Hello everybody, i've been wanting to start doing this exercise for some weeks now but i didn't because i thought i wasn't ready, and because i usually leave things half done, hopefully i'll be diligent enough to make 20 studies or more, i really think i can imporve with this.
My first image is by John Singer Sargent, "Madame X", i chose this one because it's one of my favourite paintings, i love the profile of this woman, and i love the contrast between the dark dress and her pale skin.
I really struggled at the beggining trying to get the proportions right, first i made her too wide, then too tall... I managed to get them right by adding some crosshairs and finding guide points, like the point were the dress comes toguether at her cleavage creating a heart shape kinda, that point is right in the middle of the painting horizontally, finding that was really helpful. Later i just blocked in the biggest shapes and continued adding detail. I'm happy of how it came out altough i can see errors in the values, the background is lighter than it should be and her skin lacks some of the lightest parts, this was because i was copying from the screen of another device, the values looked different there. I'll try to find a better way to do the next study.
Also here's how i sketched out the values, sorry for the messy image
Also also, forgot to say that i'm ignoring the 1 hour limit time for now, i've read in some other threads that it doesn't matter first until you get used to it, when i can do this faster i'll try to meet the limit. It took me around 2 and half hours to do this probably, maybe 3 hours, i'm not sure.
I'm not really sure what is wrong with this one but it looks kinda weird to me, it looks wrong in general but... i don't know, i would like some critique on this one specially.
What i always loved about this painting is how subtly the pearl is painted, it consists of a highlight and a little reflective light that comes from the collar, and it stands out even more because it's surrounded by shadows, that was always pretty fascinating to me. I also like the balance of the values, there's a nice mix of very dark, very light and middle tones. I realized the rhythm that the edge of the lights have, apart from that it creates a line that moves your eye around the painting, the bandana thing helps to do that too.
I started doing this yesterday but didn't get to finish it, i finished it right now. It's morning here in my country btw xD
I like these, not sure what to say in terms of crits
Possibly the background on madame X a little too light,
The head of the girl with the pearl earring is a fraction too small and the chin should stick out a bit more.
agreed on the prior crit about the sargent. keep an eye on those values, and double check them all before uploading. the vermeer is looking great. a few accents on the head scarf where there are darks on the top and it will wrap up. keep up the good work. jm
I've been really lazy these days, i have no excuse
I chose this one because i like the contrast, and i like how nice the brush strokes are in his face, i tried to mimic that using a hard brush and more confident brush strokes, i definetly want that to reflect in my paintings.
Nice work. You are headed in the right direction. Your shapes and values are looking good. 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 at it...you are going to do well with this.
I chose this one because i wanted to challenge myself, turned out wrong, i spent too much time on it and later i kinda forgot about it, but i'm gonna upload it now, it's not finished but it think it's enough. I tryed to keep my hard edges controlled and i think it turned out nicely. I like the continuty that the arms give and even tho it has a wide range of values, it's well balanced.
Nice study. You see value and shape well. Your edges are also coming along nicely. You have his head tilted at a more upright axis than the original and I would recommend not leaving the other woman's face blank. I do not expect these studies to be polished, although you may do so until you are content. Mainly I want to be sure that your shapes, values and edges are being handled very well and your compositional knowledge is being refined. So far so good. I want you to keep pushing to do better. There are spots in this bouguerau which are stunning, and other spots which are less so, which i think is just a time frame issue, but I would like to see you being as consistent as possible throughout the pieces.
Keep it up. You are on the right track.
I'm gonna go back to this exercise but i'm gonna set a time limit on myself so i can do them more often. I chose this painting by Charles Joshua Chaplin. It was done in around 2 hours.
The tones in the background help keep the eye in the main subject and add contrast. The main focal point is the face and the secondary is the dove, i think the features of her face point towards the dove, the fact that she is looking at it, and the nose is almost an arrow pointing at it. Then the wing leads you back up to her face. The eyes, mouth, chin, cheeks and hard edge of the shadow below her face all have the same rounded shape which adds some calming repetition, it adds to the feeling of peace that this painting has. The point with more contrast seems to be her shoulder, but there's so few visual weight in it that it simply "slides" your eye through that clear surface to one of the focal points.
These are excellent so far. I think that you are mostly missing a pass on your edges, to crisp up the sharpest edges and soften down the softest edges. Watch for that at the end...once you go through that pass the image will pop. Just hit those edges and you are good to go. The most recent study is a really good improvement.
True - edges are your biggest problem right now. I know at first I wasn't even aware of the importance of good edge work - maybe you face the same problem - here's a little reading to help
Alright thanks guys for the feedback, i'm aware of my problem with edges and i'm going to check them more from now on. Since that Sargent painting is a good example of good edges, i decided to go with it. Two and a half hours for this one.
The main focal point is her eyes. There is some interesting rhythm of light accents around her face, in her earrings, the top of her ear, her eyelids and her hairband. There's economy in her clothes, all the detail is in her face.
This time i did "The anatomy lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp" by Rembrandt. Took more than 6 hours, but don't know exactly how many.
The main focal point is the Doctor in the right, while the students are facing right and are grouped, the doctor is facing left and is apart from the group, so that instantly makes him stand out. He also has more contrast, while students in the back have fewer contrast and less saturated colors, in the color version, that is.
Her face is the point with more contrast as she is surrounded by black, there's continuity with the wrinkles of the cloth and the position of the fingers.
Very nice work..and good improvement already. Your shapes were off earlier and in the most recent, that is resolved. 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