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Thread: Doug Higgins on Frank Reilly

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    "Edge planes" What does this mean? Planes that are turned more away from the viewer?

    Also thanks Doug, its wonderful you are taking the time to do this and its very appreciated.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whirly View Post
    "Edge planes" What does this mean? Planes that are turned more away from the viewer?

    Also thanks Doug, its wonderful you are taking the time to do this and its very appreciated.
    By "Edge planes" on a figure I mean that area of a form at the edge which is most likely to be influenced by the background causing it to become more neutral. By "Planes" Mr. Reilly meant the flattened portions of a rounded form. The diagram shows the planes of the head...

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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaint View Post
    Doug,

    About your painting at the beginning of this thread, could you talk about using edges as a composition tool. While the edges in your painting seem completely natural, I believe you are designing them, losing some and sharpening others for focus? I know Reilly talks about the big blur and lost and found edges. Any rules of thumb as to their effective use when painting?
    Further explanation regarding edges... yes, the edges are designed. The effect (Mr. Reilly's word) or focus, center of interest, which is that portion of the figure where the painter would like to direct the viewer's eye, is the largest, lightest area of the figure, usually the area out in the light that is closest to the light. In the case of the standing nude, it is the large light shape in the center of the figure that I was using as the effect. Sharp edges are attractive to the eye so edges near the focus may be sharper as an aid to directing the eye. The hard edge next to the shadow from her right hand is a case in point. Another attraction is value contrast which is also present here. These design elements may be subtle but they have the value of showing the artist how to paint other edges in the figure to lessen their attraction.

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  6. #34
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    Doug,

    Thanks for that info. Do you have any suggestions for people who don't have the benefit of being able to study with you or others who teach the method. What is the best way to learn from Mr Reilly's method if we are getting it from books like the ones you've published. Any thoughts on how to practice the material?

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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaint View Post
    Doug,

    Thanks for that info. Do you have any suggestions for people who don't have the benefit of being able to study with you or others who teach the method. What is the best way to learn from Mr Reilly's method if we are getting it from books like the ones you've published. Any thoughts on how to practice the material?
    If you can find a group that meets five days or nights a week (I learned to draw at night), has a model stand, lights the model 3/4 light and 1/4 shade, and is quiet or at least meets most of those criteria, then draw, draw, draw using my book as a guide.
    If this venue continues, you can post your drawings here and I'll see if I can be of assistance.
    There's no one best way to draw but as a tip, I'm currently drawing on Utrecht 14 x 17 white regular surface pads using a #48 Koh-i-Noor holder with either #2625 Koh-i-Noor composite sticks or soft graphite sticks that fit the holder. These drawing were done using the composite stick for the cast and graphite for the coat. As an aside and something you can practice without a model, the coat over the chair is meant to reveal the shape of the chair underneath which is what we do with clothing, reveal the figure underneath and if you can find plaster casts, they can be used for practice studies.

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    Excellent Doug - you're quite right about finding the right sort of group as well...not always easy!

    I have a general question...what role or depth of study of pure anatomical knowledge do you think is appropriate? How much did Mr. Reilly stress or focus on memorization and diagrams of musculature and the skeleton?

    Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    Excellent Doug - you're quite right about finding the right sort of group as well...not always easy!

    I have a general question...what role or depth of study of pure anatomical knowledge do you think is appropriate? How much did Mr. Reilly stress or focus on memorization and diagrams of musculature and the skeleton?

    Thanks!
    Mr. Reilly taught anatomy but his stress was what he called structure. Structure has to do with muscle groups as seen on the surface of the figure. Here's one anatomy example from my book. The numbers are named... masseter muscle, temporal muscles, zygomatic arch, temporal bone, mastoid process etc, etc.

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    Here's something that may be of interest. A preview of one of my landscape DVDs...


    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=05Kkf-xu1bk

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    Looks great Doug,
    would you comment on how you arrived at your palette since it is obviously not a Reilly string palette.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaint View Post
    Looks great Doug,
    would you comment on how you arrived at your palette since it is obviously not a Reilly string palette.
    After leaving art school and having learned how to paint the figure using Mr. Reilly's palette, I decided to become a landscape painter which required a greater range of color. I had learned something about landscape in his class... the general principles but began looking into the methods of painters I admired, Sarolla, Degas, Seago etc., etc., etc., which lead me to learning an open palette which I taught myself. By open palette I mean using complements to neutralize instead of mixing strings of gray. Also Mr. Reilly taught the Munsell color wheel but I chose the simpler three primary color wheel because it is easier to visualize in my mind.

    Last edited by dhiggins; December 6th, 2012 at 11:20 PM.
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    Here's another DVD preview - painting of an outdoor landscape which describes the thought process...

    src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/l9hHB1o4p1Y"

    Well that source code worked well enough elsewhere but not here for some reason. To view this preview please go to my website and find the Utube DVD previews where indicated... www.dhfa.net

    Last edited by dhiggins; December 6th, 2012 at 11:23 PM.
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    Here you go.

    yt /yt <---the last 11 letters/numbers of the youtube vid go between.

    Include brackets [] []

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    Quote Originally Posted by dhiggins View Post
    Here's something that may be of interest. A preview of one of my landscape DVDs...
    in the first video at 5:22 you mention adding red to the stone for reflected light and then say "but in doing this, holding the local". local is its local value (not hue/chroma), right? (im quite sure you mean value, but since i got the opportunity to ask, i want to be entirely sure )

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    Thank you so much for your help with the preview.
    Best, Doug

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    Quote Originally Posted by sone_one View Post
    in the first video at 5:22 you mention adding red to the stone for reflected light and then say "but in doing this, holding the local". local is its local value (not hue/chroma), right? (im quite sure you mean value, but since i got the opportunity to ask, i want to be entirely sure )
    There are a number of ideas going on here. Yes, holding the local includes color and chroma as well as value but also how did the rock get to be green in the first place? Bear with me while I get into the weeds on this. There was a scientist named Eugene Chevreul who influenced the Impressionists whom I studied. Getting to the point, a red local will have a complement in the shadow, green, and the one will strengthen the other visually. Regarding the rock in the preview, that was a judgement call. It wasn't looking like a red rock enough so I added some red in the shadow (leaving some green) so that the rock held the local to my eye. Chevreul was post Reilly so I generally play it down as I came across him well into my landscape studies and years after Reilly. Here's a figure that may show what I mean about complements in a more obvious way...

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    thank you alot for the explanation! didnt want to ask first, because i felt stupid... so glad i did anyway.

    this is going to be the best thread ever

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    Thank you for the best thread comment but please, please there are no stupid questions and I'll try not to supply any stupid answers.

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    With a great deal of practice a Reilly student was able to mentally visualize the six line or figure abstraction in any position. In the following case, 3/4 view, I had a general idea of the figure before the initial drawing, due to the memorized abstraction, and was able to invent relationships that were present in this drawing/painting of the Winged Victory plaster cast. The understanding of the abstraction of the figure underneath the clothing enabled me to stress the shape of body parts as they neared the surface. After many drawings of nude figures the shape of the deltoid or shoulder muscle group or the calf for instance is well known and can be stressed as well as the general look of the rest of the figure. With these things in mind, the result is not just the copying of externals, frequently misstated, but a revealed understanding of the human figure...

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    Just wanted to say, thanks for taking the time to share all this, Doug. It's all extremely interesting and informative!

    -Sid

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    My latest project. I bacame aware of a Russian artist named Fedor Zakharov and greatly admire his work so I decided to try and figure out his approach. The following are a paintings of his and a few of mine using my ideas of his approach (The rail yard and the black ship in dry dock are mine)..



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