Saturday, October 1, 2011

Sketching the Live Model in Oil

As you know I work from the live model at least once a week when our figure drawing group meets in my studio.  Most of the time I work with pastel (Nupastels are my favorite) or watercolor.  Lately I have been using my oil paints more and more to work from the live model.

A couple of weeks ago I painted this 11" x 14" panel in oil, about 80 minutes of painting time.

One of two paintings I did that evening, the other was a study in watercolor.  I especially like the stool she is sitting on - I didn't fully paint all four legs, a couple are only implied, but work very well.

This past Wednesday we had another wonderful model, and I chose to create two more oil sketches from the longer poses (about 50 minutes to work on each) These are 6" x 12" textured panels.

I like the horizontal pose, the way she fits into the space, her pressure on her elbow, the subtle indication of the knee under her leg.
I only did a little work on it the next day, filling in the rest of her leg.  When I do work on these paintings the following day, I have to find that balance between defining shapes and keeping the loose, immediate quality of working right from the live model.

I also worked on the vertical pose, filling in the background the emphasize the sheer white drapery.

I was tempted to "fix" her hand - define the shape and the fingers, but restrained myself!  It would have eliminated the "abreviation" I used the night before - the quick stroke of dark skin tone on the back of her hand and the quick dab of yellow to show the light on her fingertips.  Sometimes less is best!

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