There is an unfortunate lack of anatomical mastery in art education in the USA. I am collateral damage of the post modern era where concept and expression took precedent over academic style teaching methods. For that reason, I am constantly struggling to perform that which, at this point in my career, should be second nature. I can not stress enough how critical it is for the artist to continously sharpen their ability to draw and paint the human body, especially the hands and face. That is why so many self-portraits exist of the great masters; understanding the one face you never see, save in reflection, is the best way to master the structure of the face. Here are two charcoal head studies of Vikki & Jerry. Ideally, one head study per week is the way to go.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
For this piece I decided to replicate the pose of Rodin's sculpture "The Thinker." Using historical art as a springboard for one's work is a perfectly acceptable way to master certain techniques. In fact, there is ample precedent in which artists borrow style, image and composition from other artists. This is because all visual arts, just like music and language, are governed by rules of grammar and vocabulary, how the artist composes the final sentence and paragraph is what makes the work unique.