There are some great work in here and people seem to learn a lot, so I thought I would try it out.
Here's my first study, Black Bashi-Bazouk by Jean-Léon Gérôme. I spent one hour on it.
About Gérômes painting:
First I just thought this portrait seemed interesting but I didn't know really why. Now that I've been watching closer and trying to take in Jasons video, I'll try and say something. I like the continuty into nice curved shapes. The curved hat continues into the mans cheek. The details hanging down from the hat in curves. The hat also creates an interesting S-shape together with his profiled face. The rifle in the back creates a curve with the arm towards the right bottom corner. In fact a lot of movement seems to be going down to the bottom corner, but Gérôme balances that out with a pair of (what I think is) pistols that protrude behind his arm. Emphasis seems to me (judging from the level of detail) to be almost as much on his costume as on the warrior himself but the contrast of the heavily shaded face towards the background keeps focus on the portrayed.