Thursday, August 05, 2010

Transfixed by the Masters

I remember it vividly, that moment when for the first time I was truly transfixed by a painting.

I was fascinated by the light on the train and how the brush strokes and seemingly ambigous scene there was so much to see.
It's not the first painting I remember, but it is the first to really grab me.
What about you?

Copying the Masters

Cropped version of The Fortune Teller by Georges de La Tour
Original on the left, copied version on the right I did in 2000

One of the things that I found very beneficial in  helping develop my painting and drawing skills was to follow the old tradition of copying masters. It really sharpens the eye to colours, layers, brush strokes, etc and that is where the value is.
I just couldn't get the subtlety of the skin tones, but I really enjoyed trying.

"You have to copy and recopy the masters," Degas insisted, "and it's only after having proved oneself as a good copyist that you can reasonably try to do a still life of a radish."

I've never painted a radish,maybe I should!


deb said...

O it was turner for me too, I could still spend my entire LIFE in the turner gallery at the Tate, his work is so emotional for me, after that it would be the great colour field painters especially Rothko and Clifford Still

JafaBrit's Art said...

Hiay Deb,
I wasn't keen on clifford Still's work until I spent time in a room full of them and they had the same effects as a room full of Rothko's. Photographs in books and mags really don't do the justice.