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  1. #1
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    Unhappy vonsar - Composition 1.1

    I've tried to get into art many times. This usually doesn't get any further than doing a few hours of head studies before stopping for a few months. I'm hoping by following a course I can have a bit more direction in my learning. I've already completed a few paintings as I wanted to make sure I was going to stick to it. So here goes!

    1 - Rembrandt (1 hour)

    I really liked the detail on the face compared to the very plain clothes. It draws you in.

    2 - Velasquez (1h 15mins)

    The composition on this piece is really cool. I found myself looking from each hand to the face. These are really high contrast areas with dark backgrounds. It was a lot harder to copy than the Rembrandt, I struggled a lot with the cloak.

    3 - Van Dyck (50 mins)

    I wanted to try a study out and liked the guys expression. The sparsely drawn hair compared to the detailed face really draws you in, similar to the Rembrandt. This was my first time using a new tablet and I found it quite difficult, especially trying to emulate the hair. I find myself getting lost in the details.

    4 - Van Dyck again (1h 40mins)

    Found myself sampling my own work for colours a lot more and I think it really helped to make it look more consistent. I also started to use some other brushes and broke away from the solid circle brush which helped to give it a more natural feel. I made better use of the navigator too which helped me keep track of the whole piece.

    I'm not sure whether I should be using a palette or not? I usually just wing the colours as best I can.

    Any advice/critique is extremely welcome!
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  3. #2
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    I've never tried a landscape before. It was much harder than I'd expected. The terrain is so busy it's hard to know where to start. The picture doesn't even look mildly coherent without putting in the little details.

    There is lots of repetition with the trees which I should have tried harder to put in. The mountains at the back are drawn with economy.

    Name:  bierstadt1h.jpg
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  4. #3
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    hi and welcome vonsar; hope this work out for you!
    you're off to a good start at least. you go a bit dark in the darks, but not that bad. and the landscape is already better here. I notice some oddities in the shapes of the heads. like in the 4th in the 1st post (last) the tuft of hair is in the wrong place. that breaks the dome shape of the mans head, and makes everything look odd. I think that's just a question of keeping an eye out for the underlaying shapes though.
    hope to see more!
    SKETCHBOOK - my website - facebook company page
    ooh yeah; did you know I'm a certified art-teacher? that's right. everything arty I say has been endorsed by the state of the Netherlands! (they'll be sorry soon)

  5. #4
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    excellent start on these. thanks for sharing. it is very important to really focus in on the mapping out of your shapes as accurately as you can possibly get them...both positive and negative shapes. If you put a shape in the wrong place and commit you end up having the other shapes off and require fixing, which increases painting time. By taking just a few extra minutes early on to measure out your shapes, to compare your shapes, and be sure they are placed and drawn accurately will make the rest of the painting process, working out your values and edges, much much easier.

    You should flip the images horizontally and vertically so that you see the shapes with fresh eyes. This should be part of the process and if you are already doing that, keep doing it more. The professional artists will often flip images or use a mirror to see with fresh eyes as many as three or four times a minute as they are working when things really get flowing. You can also back away...actually get up and back away...and doing this works for shapes as well as checking values and edges.

    Keep up the good work.


    jm

  6. #5
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    Thanks for the encouragement guys. I finished another piece just now:

    PIECE 6 - Degas (1h 30mins)

    Name:  degas1h30mins.jpg
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    I spent a lot longer trying to get the proportions right on this piece. Flipping the canvas certainly helped a lot. Would be nice to have rendered it a bit better but I found the medium very hard to replicate.

  7. #6
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    at this point the main challenge to resolve is surface and texture...using a more chalky brush will help a lot with the atmosphere and mood matching that you want to keep an eye on. beautiful job with your shapes and edges otherwise...but don't go too smooth on paintings that are very textural like this.

    keep it up.

    j

  8. #7
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    Hey we did the same image on the same day! I swear I had this one slated to be my next one for a while now, wasn't just copying! (Do you realize you have it backwards here?)
    "Figure drawing prepares you for painting at a high level" - Jeff Watts

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  10. #8
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    PIECE 7 - Cassatt

    First picture is after an hour. The second is 1h 30mins. There were so many mistakes I felt as if I were fighting a losing battle trying to match everything up. I need to take a lot more time in the drawing phase.
    Name:  cassatt1hmins.jpg
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    Name:  cassatt1h30mins.jpg
Views: 1115
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    Here is another Cassatt. This time 50 minutes. I think I'm worse than when I started. :p

    Name:  cassatt2-50mins.jpg
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    Last edited by vonsar; March 22nd, 2014 at 03:16 PM.

  11. #9
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    ok great to see these. Three things...which I keep sharing tonight...and they are very basic.

    a. slow down and be sure your shapes are roughed in and mapped out very very accurately. flip the images horizontally and vertically more if need be.
    b. do a pass toward the end where you double check and triple check all your values, starting with the largest shapes.
    c. make sure you are accurately rendering your edges...don't leave things too soft in areas.

    You are getting 90 percent the way there on each of the above and the goal is to hit 100 percent on each. It takes some patience but if you develop these habits from the start you will find it easy by the end. Keep up the great work. It was also interesting to see how close you came on shapes in the first one...but values were a little off...but the second one you have more accurate values but the shapes are a little off. this shows me it won't be long til you have this worked out.


    Jason

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    A work in progress. I really like Repin. This is after 1 hour but I want to spend probably another on it. I tried hard to concentrate on your advice Jason! I can see the more obvious errors too like the door and the fireplace. I think I need to watch the intro video again, I'm finding it hard to pick things out about the artworks.

    1h
    Name:  repin-1h.jpg
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    1h 30mins
    Name:  repin-1h30.jpg
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    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by vonsar; April 3rd, 2014 at 05:36 PM.

  13. #11
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    Another Repin, 55 mins this time. Now to go back and finish the previous one!

    PIECE 10

    Name:  repin55mins.jpg
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  14. #12
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    great job. Be sure that you are keeping a close eye on your edges. Note where the sharpest sharpest sharps and softest soft edges are and use them as guideposts/landmarks for the rests of the edges in the image. Edges are important to space, form, and focal areas, so getting those in there will help the piece a lot. Once you do, you will see quality improve a lot. Keep up the great work. -jm

  15. #13
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    Another Bierstadt. I didn't notice how far up the mountain the seagulls seals went until about an hour into it. Great use of repetition.

    PIECE 11 - Bierstadt (1h 30mins)

    Name:  bierstadt1h30mins.jpg
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  16. #14
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    excellent work. I think you are just a little bit dark on the bridge and biggest seal up there, but the rest is coming along super well. great study.

    jm

  17. #15
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    Oh dear.

    PIECE 12 - Cassatt. 1h 30mins.

    Name:  cassatt1h30mins.jpg
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  18. #16
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    you also got great taste! and I see great progress too. watch your sizes though; the head in the last is too low// a bit big. this messes up the overall look.
    SKETCHBOOK - my website - facebook company page
    ooh yeah; did you know I'm a certified art-teacher? that's right. everything arty I say has been endorsed by the state of the Netherlands! (they'll be sorry soon)

  19. #17
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    this most recent is a tough one as all those little shapes are so key to the composition. it would just need more time to get it to feeling completed. very nice start though. watch that hand...yours is a bit wide. keep up the great work.


    jm

  20. #18
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    It has been a long time but I'm trying to get back into this.

    Here is my latest attempt:

    Name:  sargent2final.png
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  21. #19
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    Nice work Vonsar! You were getting through these at a pretty quick pace, so good to see you back at it. Question; are you laying out your images by doing a line drawing first then adding in the tones, or are you simply putting up tonal shapes to get the composition down? Anyway, keep up the great work!
    HEIDAMONSTER
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    Howdy!

    I chose to do a dress similar to your last, but a Monet. Man did I regret it! So many folds, and shadows where the creases were and planes changed. But, I'm glad I did it. I hope you are too.

    Your work is progressing. You have the same issue I do: a bit wide/big in areas. I've found grids may be the way to go for me, it help to look at the negative space and see where mine is off.

    Hope you have a good one!

    -Jaz

  23. #21
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    The first Van Dyck looks good! I like it.

  24. #22
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    Name:  repin_final.jpg
Views: 719
Size:  71.1 KBName:  repin-orig.jpg
Views: 758
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    So bad at this. In answer to your question heidamonster I'm doing a line drawing first, then blocking in over the top. Then realising how bad my line drawing was and changing all the blocks around.

  25. #23
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    Oh dear that came out much larger than I'd hoped.

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    Name:  monet_close_enough.jpg
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  29. #27
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    Nearly nothing wrong with it. Good study.

  30. #28
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    The only difference between your study and the orignal is just the technique. The original is more painterly and able to see the brush strokes. That is all lol. You did a great study all looks great

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