Copy Famous Paintings – Milton Avery

milton-avery-large-seated-woman-in-blue

What is It?

Painting Seated Woman in Blue“, by Milton AveryDate not known.

How was this painting done?

Milton Avery has creatively used simplification in his drawing of the furniture and model. The artist has combined his drawing with magical sparks of colour to create a jigsaw of shapes.  These shapes create a patchwork of colour showing the influence of American Abstraction.  The artist has been bold.  He has taken risks and the result is a poetic and powerful representation of domesticity.

Why Should We Care?

Milton Avery is a great example of a person who created art despite many setbacks.  Whilst working at night in a factory from the age of 15 and having the sole responsibility of his nine female relatives, he painted during the day.  He attended weekend art classes at the Art Students League and there, after many years without recognition, was discovered by a wealthy art financier. Avery created his own style and stayed with it even though his work was considered too abstract until much later in his life.

Where can I find more paintings like it?

Similarities to Avery’s colourful abstractions of everyday life can be seen inWoman on a Terrace“,  1907 by Henri Matisse.

French Fauvism and German Expressionism influenced the style of Avery’s early work.   Similarities to his bold and creative use of drawing and color can be seen inMarzella“, 1909-10 by German artist, Ludwig Kirchner

Meditate, relax and enjoy

There can be no mistakes in making this painting.  Everything ends up as it should be.  Take the luxury of “time out” to recreate this fabulous painting in acrylics yourself, here’s how:

You will need

  • a small canvas, 30cm x 40cm is a good size
  • tubes of primary acrylic colours, blue, red and yellow plus white
  • a dark watercolour crayon
  • soft nylon paint brushes, (small, medium and a little larger)
  • water in an old container
  • a rag or disposable cloth
  • two or three hours

Tips on the Process

  • prime the canvas first, otherwise, just a wash and dry with a towel
  • print the photo you want to work from, measure and cut into quarters to make your drawing in a grid
  • turn the original photo upside down to make the drawing
  • use a dark coloured water colour crayon for your drawing
  • correct drawing right-side up from the original
  • erase crayon easily with a damp cloth
  • it is okay for the watercolour crayon mark to bleed into the painting
  • everything is easily painted over with acrylics
  • paint in the background first
  • The painting will not look great at the initial blocking in stage, stay with it for a pleasant surprise
  • try not to use paint directly from the tube; experiment with how to mix colours
  • acrylics dry darker than the mixed colour

The Drawing Process

Turn your photo upside down and draw the space around the drawing first.  This is just a framework to place the figure on the page and you can easily correct right-side up with the dampened cloth as I have done below.

Otherwise, you may use my drawing below.  I suggest you ask your copy shop to print the PDF below onto a canvas and proceed to make your own unique painting.  Otherwise, you can print the copy on to good quality paper, paint the picture and frame it.  It’s your painting after all!

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Photo from https://www.reproduction-gallery.com/oil-painting/1341213288/seated-woman-in-blue-by-milton-avery/ accessed 11/11/2016

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Copy Famous Paintings – Pablo Picasso

picasso-the-dream

What is It?

“Le Rêve” (The Dream), Oil painting, 1932 by Pablo Picasso

How was this painting done?

In this painting, Picasso creates a distorted depiction, with very simplified outlines and contrasting colors resembling early Fauvism. Picasso takes the human form of his young mistress and translates it into colours and shapes.  He uses intense colours like the sun,  bright red lipstick and soft colours of the body to depict her sensuality.  The model’s face shows emotions of peace and tranquility.  The artist uses  a darker harlequin pattern in the background.  Some say this could be a metaphor for Picasso’s belief in himself as a trickster or harlequin.

Why Should We Care?

Pablo Picasso and his friend Georges Braque invented Cubism and a new way of seeing by painting the subject from multiple viewpoints.  .

Picasso painted what he wanted, he broke away from tradition by being himself and showing his emotions. Without Pablo Picasso and his controversial artworks, Modern Art and the world would not be what they are today.  How we see art has completely changed, thanks to the genius of Picasso.

Where can I find more paintings like it?

Similarities in subject matter and use of bright colours can be found in the early abstractions of Matisse such as in his 1905 painting titled,  Bonheur de Vivre, or the “Joy of Life.and “Portrait of Lydia Delectorskaya“, 1947.

Picasso’s early work “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, 1907 shows the influence of African art and a subsequent distortion of the face.

Meditate, relax and enjoy

There can be no mistakes in making this painting.  Everything ends up as it should be.  Take the luxury of “time out” to recreate this fabulous painting in acrylics yourself, here’s how:

You will need

  • a small canvas, 30cm x 40cm is a good size
  • tubes of primary acrylic colours, blue, red and yellow plus white
  • a dark watercolour crayon
  • soft nylon paint brushes, (small, medium and a little larger)
  • water in an old container
  • a rag or disposable cloth
  • two or three hours

Tips on the Process

  • prime the canvas first, otherwise, just a wash and dry with a towel
  • print the photo you want to work from, measure and cut into quarters to make your drawing in a grid
  • turn the original photo upside down to make the drawing
  • use a dark coloured water colour crayon for your drawing
  • correct drawing right-side up from the original
  • erase crayon easily with a damp cloth
  • it is okay for the watercolour crayon mark to bleed into the painting
  • everything is easily painted over with acrylics
  • paint in the background first
  • The painting will not look great at the initial blocking in stage, stay with it for a pleasant surprise
  • try not to use paint directly from the tube; experiment with how to mix colours
  • acrylics dry darker than the mixed colour

The Drawing Process

Turn your photo upside down and draw the space around the drawing first.  This is just a framework to place the figure on the page and you can easily correct right-side up with the dampened cloth as I have done below.

Otherwise, you may use my drawing below.  I suggest you ask your copy shop to print the PDF below onto a canvas and proceed to make your own unique painting.  Otherwise, you can print the copy on to good quality paper, paint the picture and frame it.  It’s your painting after all!

0711-2016-0041011-2016-004

Image from http://www.pablopicasso.org/the-dream.jsp accessed 09/11/2016

Copy Famous Paintings – Pablo Picasso

BBC_picasso

What is it?

Painting Child with a Dove, 1901 by Spanish artist, Pablo Picasso

How was it done?

Picasso painted this picture quickly with a few strong lines and bright spots of colour.  The forms are rendered in simple sweeping lines, there are three tones, light, mid and dark with greenish tones dominating.  The colours are subdued and controlled by swoops of line.  The picture is thickly painted with superfluous details left out.

This painting was done at the commencement of Picasso’s blue period when he painted in blue and green monochromatic colours only.

Why should we care?

The painting gives us an insight into the personality of Picasso at 21 when the portrait was done.  It shows his thoughtfulness and poetic sympathy with the subject.  At the time, Picasso was facing difficult years without a studio and he struggled to survive and sell his paintings. This was reflected in Picasso’s paintings of poverty and instability done around this time.  In the blue period, he often painted the desolation of social outsiders, prisoners, beggars, circus folk and despairing people.

Where can I find more paintings like this?

Picasso was influenced by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and this can be seen in the portrait of Monsieur Boileau done in 1893.  Edgar Degas was another influence and his 1895 portrait of the Seated Woman reflects this.

Meditate, relax and enjoy

There can be no mistakes in making this painting.  Everything ends up as it should be.  Take the luxury of “time out” to recreate this fabulous painting in acrylics yourself, here’s how:

You will need

  • a small canvas, 30cm x 40cm is a good size
  • tubes of primary acrylic colours, blue, red and yellow plus white
  • a dark watercolour crayon
  • soft nylon paint brushes, (small, medium and a little larger)
  • water in an old container
  • a rag or disposable cloth
  • an hour or two

Tips on the Process

  • prime the canvas first, otherwise, just a wash and dry with a towel
  • print the photo you want to work from, measure and cut into quarters to make your drawing in a grid
  • turn the original photo upside down to make the drawing
  • use a dark coloured water colour crayon for your drawing
  • correct drawing right-side up from the original
  • erase crayon easily with a damp cloth
  • it is okay for the watercolour crayon mark to bleed into the painting
  • everything is easily painted over with acrylics
  • paint in the background first
  • try not to use paint directly from the tube; experiment with how to mix colours
  • create a perfect skin tone by blending warm yellow, warm red, a dot of cool blue and lots of white, experiment first
  • layering colours on top of others using the scumbling technique creates magic
  • acrylics dry darker than the mixed colour

The Drawing Process

Turn your photo upside down and draw the space around the drawing first.  This is just a framework to place the figure on the page and you can easily correct right-side up with the dampened cloth as I have done below.

Otherwise, you may use my drawing below.  I suggest you ask your copy shop to print the PDF below onto a canvas and proceed to make your own unique painting.  Otherwise, you can print the copy on to good quality paper, paint the picture and frame it.  It’s your painting after all!

2908 2016 004

picasso-girl-w-dove

Image from http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-22123607 accessed 18/08/2016

What is a Photo Transfer?

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The subtle lovely image above looks just like a drawing!  It is in fact, a photo transfer.  Here I will show you how in this easy exercise which takes about 15 minutes.   You will need to prepare first by making a colour photocopy image to work from (I did mine at the local library.)  Photos of relatives, babies and children work really well with this process and with a frame around they look fantastic for a bedroom or wherever.

You will need:

  • A coloured photocopy of a subject you like.
  • A small bottle of Acetone (available from the hardware store)
  • Good quality artists paper (I used cartridge paper)
  • Clean rags
  • Rubber gloves
  • a 6B pencil or similar
  • an artists’ board or firm piece of cardboard to work on.  (I used a resin plate I had for mono printing.)

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As I was working on  a childhood theme at the time, I decided to use this colourful romper suit to work from.  My mother had made one of these suits for me from an Enid Gilchrist pattern book when I was a child.  Working on this created wonderful memories of play, freedom, adventure, sunshine, climbing, playing, freedom and fun.

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Firstly, I cut the cartridge paper to fit the photocopy (in this case A4)  and placed the romper suit image on the board face up.   Make sure the board is clean of dust and debris.  Next I placed a white piece of cartridge paper on top of the play suit image.

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Next I wet a clean rag with the acetone and rubbed it over the top piece of cartridge paper where the image would have been underneath. I could see the shape of the image underneath as I was doing this

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Next I went over the top page with a 6b graphite pencil held horizontally so as not to tear  it.  I pressed firmly and carefully at this stage making sure to cover the entire area where the image would be.  The wet top page dries off quickly so there should be no problems at this stage.

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Next I peeled the acetone soaked top page off to reveal a beautiful shimmering image of the romper suit complete with subtle shadows.

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I then decided to take the work further by cutting around the original image with Photoshop to isolate the play suit (below right.)

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The image on the left was what I came up with.  I preferred the first attempt myself although if you are a “neat freak” this process may appeal to you. Voila!  This was so easy I am going to do some photo transfers of children and give them as gifts for Christmas.

For more on Enid Gilchrist diy patterns and rompersuits see http://odetoenid.blogspot.com.au/2011/10/romper-stomper.html

How to Make an Easy Abstract Painting Using String and Oil Crayons

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In this exercise, you will learn how to make a beautiful abstract painting using the string exercise as a starter, see my post “Be Random – Make and Easy String Painting

In the above post you will see where to stop the process and continue here with this exercise.

Allow 2 hours for this exercise. Find a quiet place, set time aside for yourself, just relax and enjoy the process.  To be unconcerned about the outcome will bring out your best work.

You will need:

  • good quality watercolour paper, at least 180gsm
  • a box of oil crayons (childrens’ quality is okay)
  • an inexpensive set of watercolour tubes, (you can make all the colours you need with red, yellow, blue, black and white)
  • rags for spills
  • a container for water
  • a palette, (I used an old kitchen plate)
  • a large brush (I used a new household paint brush)
  • string
  • acrylic paints, (red, yellow, blue, black.)
  • a board and tape if you have them, this is helpful but optional only
  • scissors
  • 0612 015

This is similar to what you will start off with. I actually pressed the string a second time with this one using a lot more paint on the second application.  I did not pull the string through as with the first pressing,  I just laid the string down, pressed it and lifted the paper off. Make sure to allow the string pressings to thoroughly dry before proceeding.  This should take from 15 to 30 minutes depending on the weather.

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Proceed to colour in the shapes using oil pastels. Try to choose either red, green and yellow, OR blue, yellow and green.   See if you can isolate some shapes (in this case I imagined  fruit, cut oranges or similar.)  If you can see shapes, colour them in and in some places go over the original colour with another to make it interesting.  In the background follow the lines made by the string using parallel strokes every which way and that.  Try to leave lots of white space if you can.  This is called “repetition with variation”,  a very powerful tool when making art.

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Continue to colour in the work and you will notice it start to look interesting.  Make sure you leave lots of white spaces for the surprise step that comes next!

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Next, absolutely flood the paper with a watery watercolour paint mix (see image below.) To make a watery wash see below * Remember it is not wise use paint out of the tube directly, always make sure there very small amounts of the other primaries e.g. red, yellow and blue to make a beautiful tertiary colour.  It seems best to  choose your wash colour as the opposite of the main colour you used in the isolated shapes. For example, if you have used mainly yellow in the isolated shapes, the opposite is purple, mainly orange, the opposite is blue, mainly red, the opposite is green and vice versa.

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Here is the finished work!  See how the oil pastel marks have resisted the water colour to make a lovely abstract painting.  In the right frame with a colourful matt board this work could possibly look fantastic! :

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This image shows how to use horizontal strokes to flood the paper using a large brush.  Make sure to always put the wash down and leave it!  It is best to let the paint run in its own way.  Then magic happens!

* To make a watery wash blend about 1/2 cup of water with small amounts of pigment. You may need to use a small flat plastic bowl for this.   Always test on a piece of paper first to check the colour.

How did you go?  Did you have fun and enjoy the process?  Inbox me your work if you like at christine@zenschool.com.au  I would love to see it!