Some Bust

Posted by Mark in Mark's Sketchbook

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One day down. After a couple lectures about the oil painting process, we practiced by drawing a plaster bust. The models will arrive on Wednesday.

The method they’re teaching is very meticulous, essentially the same as the Bargue drawings I was doing a while back, but one thing that surprised me is that we’re doing all our drawing/painting about 8 feet away from the easel! What that means is the canvas is aligned with the subject. We step back and use a piece of string to measure and plot the location of various features. We walk up to the canvas, make a mark, walk back and check to see if the mark is in the right place.

The upshot of this tedious, non-creative process is that you end up with an image that’s a perfect copy of what you’re seeing, and if the canvas is aligned with the subject, the copy is also exactly the same size as the real thing. It’s kind of like a reverse-engineered photo. And if you get this part right, most of the hard work involved in getting a likeness is done.

So, we’ll have 3 days with the model to get this part done, plotting points and delineating highlights and shadows. Then next week, painting begins.

One comment

  1. Chicky

    Wow where are the models arriving from? Very interesting!