Spring Portrait Workshop at Cecil Studios

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Spring portrait workshop in action.

Spring portrait workshop in action.

I recently finished running the Spring Oil Portrait short course for Charles Cecil Studios in Florence, Italy.  Trying to teach life-size oil portraiture properly within in two weeks is nearly impossible.  But this group did well and I am very proud of their results.

For those who want to know more below is brief explanation of what happens.

Vinicio, oil on linen, 40cm x 55cm

Vinicio, oil on linen, 40cm x 55cm.  One of the strengths of the of the course is that I work alongside the students, not just a brief demonstration.  Here is an example of one of the paintings that I did during a July course.

The short courses are essentially condensed versions of the regular training that occurs at Cecil Studios.  The basic didactic philosophy is to provide a historically valid training that addresses the major principals, methods and materials utilized by great artists from the past.  Projects are developed using the sight-size approach as it was originally intended: life-size portraiture.  Working exclusively under natural light, the student begins with drawing in charcoal from the model.  Over the first 3 days, two portrait drawings are created (morning and afternoon) for the transfer to canvas.  The remaining sessions are dedicated to painting with a limited palette and olio-resinous medium.  In addition to the discussion of the practical stages of picture making a museum visit to Palazzo Pitti and a lecture explore the evolution of Renaissance and Baroque portraiture, focusing on the Florentines, Titian, Rubens and Van Dyck.

James Jones, oil on linen, 50cm x 60cm.  A recent head I did during the portrait course I taught this summer in Florence

James Jones, oil on linen, 50cm x 60cm. A recent head I did during the portrait course I taught this summer in Florence

A portrait study of Anais that I started during the spring course and hope to finish off later.

A portrait study of Anais that I started during the spring course and hope to finish off later.

 

 

Sunrise on the Pasquino group in the Loggia dei Lanzi

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Here is a link to a series of photos of one of my favorite sculptures in Florence. The series follows the morning light breaking over the ‘Pasquino’ group. One of the many benefits of living in Florence is the intimacy that I have been able to develop with these masterworks. My time spent in the Loggia dei Lanzi was my anatomy training under the auspices of humanistic rhythm and proportion.  These qualities that I am trying to incorporate into my own work are found in abundance here.

http://matthewjamescollins.tumblr.com/post/77360072326/sunrise-upon-the-pasquino-group-in-the-loggia-dei

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