Saturday, December 10, 2011

Madame G

Madame G reminds me of John Singer Sargent's Madame X.
She's one of my favorite models and I painted her all day recently, studying the non-linear approach to portrait painting.
In the top shot, you see her on the model stand in the background. In the foreground, you see my stage-2 effort to capture her. Stage-2 is the light and shadow shapes, plus the next dark and next light shapes. For the most part, the color on her cheeks and lids is the same value and temperature as the light.

Beneath that is a canvas that I used half of in the morning and half of in the afternoon. The morning work is the upsidedown image on the left, showing my first stage-1 effort. My purpose at this stage was to show only the shape of the light as it bathed her face and dark value shape surrounding that. Rightside-up-side is a shot of stage-3 from later that same day. The details were just beginning to reach expression: more value and color were added to the light shape, letting the contours of her face emerge. Had I continued, I would have next blocked in the light of her hair and then the background. I only hope that this beautiful woman would have become more and more beautiful on the linen, that I might return the honor of her posing. Thanks for your visit. 

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