Friday, March 24, 2017

Eyes, Nose, and Mouth Exercise


    • To demonstrate understanding of the structure for each feature: eyes, nose, & mouth;
    • To practice using black & white charcoal to render a drawing, using brown paper as the middle value

When drawing my mouth, it felt fairly straightforward, and I like how it turned out. The creases in my lips, and the darker corners as well as the darker middle part (where my lips part) contributed to the successful feeling for my mouth. I think I captured the shape of my lips accurately. One thing I need to keep in mind while drawing my full self portrait, is drawing my feautures exactly and porportionatly, not how I WANT them to look. Drawing my eye felt successfull as well, though I think the corner looks a little too sharp. The parts I really like about my eye is the light in the pupil as well as the highlight around my iris. I think it will take a lot of looking closly in my full portrait to accurately capture my eye shape and not just an eye shape. My nose I think was the least succesful, though I do like the way my nostrils look in the sketch. I need to work on keeping it large and accurately depicting the width of the bridge.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Intro to Portraiture

Old Man with a Black Hat and Gorget, 1631, Rembrandt Van Rijn

Born on July 15th, 1606, Rijn's modest family did everything in there means to provide him with an exceptional education. Leaving school to study art, Rijn became highly respected at the young age of 22. He moved to Amsterdam in 1631, which brought him many wealthy patrons to commission his art work. Although Rijn's professional carreer was highly successful, his personal like was marked with tragedy; his wife and children all passes away, and his beloved house was a financial burden. While his life continues to be filled with misfortune, such as him declaring bankruptcy, his artisic skills only continues to flourish as he painted "The Jewish Bride" and "The Syndics of the Cloth Guild" 

Americans who Tell the Truth, 2003, Robert Shetterly

Shetterly was born in 1946, in Ohio. He graduating from Harvard and after made the move to Maine in 1970. Shetterly illustrated many books, and was active in Civil Rights and the anti-Vietnam War movement. His paintings leaned twards narrative and sureal, though more recently his series of portaits have been gaining him attention. Shettetly has been able to use his artwork and attention to educate people all over the country that democracy cannot function and serve its purpose if politicians do not tell the truth. 

Linda Nochlin and Daisy, 1973, Alice Neel

Born in Pennsylvania, Neel was the fouth of five children. After graduating highschool she took night classes at the school of industrial art. Enrolling in a fine arts school for women, Neel became honored for her portraits. In 1924 she met a cuban artist, and continued to improve her art education. After she married the cuban artist, Neel traveled with him; Picking up different art techniques where they went. She gave birth to a daughter in 1926, who died not long after and is buried in Pennsylvania. Living mainly in New York, Neel continued to travel a lot her whole life. Diagnosed with cancer, Neel died on October 13th, with her family by her side, in New York. 

Madame X, 1884, John Singer Sargent

Sargent was born in Florence in 1856. Studying in Italy and France, he caused scandel and complaints, for his paintings were seemingly provocatively errotic. Moving to England, he established himself as the countries leading painter; his works were hung in famous museums like the Museum of Fine Arts. While he tried to keep his personal life and relationships private, he seemed to be involved in constant scandel regarding women. His moves around the world were mostly caused by heavy commisions being offered, as well as trying to keep scandel about his former paintings at ease. Sargents painting, "Group with Parasols" sold for 23.5 million dollars in 1905. 

The mood of Linda Nochlin and Daisy, 1973, by Alice Neel, is a bit scattered. The mother and daughter seems fairly happy, or at least content, yet it is clear that they are not particularly affluent given their clothes. Though there are some cool colors, the painting feels warm and comforting, I think the fact that it is based in a home and on a couch adds to that. The different colors of the clothing and the pattern of the couch add to the "scattered" feeling I mentioned before. The wrinkes of clothes and skin are very obvious, making everything seem a little messy-not sharp or crisp in any way. The daughters face seems a bit impatient, however content and childlike. The mother looks content as well, however the creases in her face and her boney fingers make her look like she has been distraught or worried at times. 

The mood of Madame X, 1884, by John Singer Sargent, is opposite in really every way to the painting described above. I think first it's important to note that this was painting in the 1800's, so the amount of shoulders and chest shown was extremely scandelous. "Madame X" appears aloof, yet upright, confident and mysterious. The  painting is fairly dark in color for they are dull and her skin sharply contrasts with the black of her dress. Her features are all very prominent and beautiful. I cannot quite tell what she is holding, for it look as if she is grabbing a handful of her dress-adding to the provacative feel of the portrait. Some words I think best describe the mood of this painting are: Mysterious, sharp, provacative, moody, dark, confident, aloof and strong. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Art Movement, Realism

      Recognized as the first modern art movement, realism rejects traditional forms of art and social class. The movement began in France in the 1840's, and replaced the dramatic, heroic and idealistic images with everyday events. This really showed art and life merging. With the idea that sometimes "ugly" pictures can be artwork, realism is marked as the beginning of modern art. The "Academy" had a tight hold on art before realism, so in the movement, artsits decided thay could forge their own path in their artwork. Along with being a social movement against the monarch and the bourgeosie, realist painters did not need for their work to be mounted by the official Academy of Art, for they could create independently.

Gustave Courbet. The Stone Breakers. 1849.

    I am particularly drawn to Jeff Legg's work. The modern day work seems to range a lot more in content than the work of masters many years ago. Jeff Legg in particular has a fairly surreal way of painting- putting objects together such as a skull, roses, and scale that don't relate but seem to have a deeper metaphor. I think one of the greatest differences I see straight away is that what is being painted or drawn is just more modern. For example, the "masters" painted work scenes in their day and meetings of important men in their time; now, however, it looks like artists are just creating art about what they want. I prefer the modern day paintings because I enjoy the content of them more. I'm pretty intrigued by this painting for it feels like it could have many different meanings.                                                                  

Jeff Legg. Retribution. 2015

Friday, February 3, 2017

Goals for this Semester

My goals for this semester are to work off of and improve my skills from Art Fundamentals. I feel confident in my ability to work with perspective and still life drawings, but I want to improve my self portrait/portrait skills.  I would love to learn more about how art can influence different parts of the world and how one can use art to bring awarness to an issue. I would also like to refine my painting skills. I feel as though I don't know many different painting techniques. Overall, my goals are to produce high quality work and get experience with new techniques and materials.