July 6, 2018

Misse and Luttine, day 6

I've been able to get to the National Gallery every other Friday on a regular basis, thanks to my wonderful friend Roxane giving me a ride! (If I have to go in by train, I tend to bug out and skip my day for the slightest reason.) Because I've been getting down there every two weeks, I'm making pretty good progress on this copy.

This morning I again tackled those #@! columns. Now that I know there are TWO columns, I looked harder at them and figured out where my copy was wrong. I worked on the columns for an hour and a half, then stopped for lunch.

After lunch, I worked on the sky and trees. I lowered the horizon a bit more. I still haven't put in those tall, spindly trees in the distance on the right. I forgot to take a picture on the easel at the end of the day, so I photographed it in the Copyists' locker room, where I didn't have room to stand back and get a straight photo of it. Oh well, you can still see my progress in this cockeyed photo. Back for more in two weeks!

(click the pictures for a larger view.)

June 22, 2018

"Misse and Luttine" day 5! The best day yet!

I had a great day today and feel like I made lots of good progress on this copy. I think the main reason was that my friend Roxane drove me again (thank you, thank you, thank you!), which saved me so much energy, from being able to sleep in a little longer, to not having to walk from the train station. Every little bit helps! I felt energetic all day, and didn't have that after lunch exhaustion that usually causes me to stop painting early in the afternoon.

All morning, I worked on the column. I felt that there was something off about it, and I wanted it to be correct, or it would always bother me. After obsessing over it for two hours, I finally stopped for a nice lunch with Roxane and Diana.

After lunch, I really got busy: I repainted the sky and clouds, mixed a warmer white for Misse's coat (I used Naples Yellow, which seemed right,) and lowered Luttine's head by bringing the sky and trees down into it and repainting her jaw lower. I made a rich black by mixing burnt umber and ultramarine blue with a little alizarin crimson, and painted all of Luttine that color, then I went back into her coat with a lighter value for the highlighted areas. (I'll repaint her again later anyway.) I also lowered the horizon a little and put some details into the landscape. I'll wait to put those few tall trees in for when the paint is dry in that area. I haven't repainted any of the ground yet.

The pictures below are from the end of the day. When I met my friends Roxane and Diana (who also came along today,) I was complaining to them that I really didn't understand that column, which was making it hard to paint it correctly. After looking at it for a while, Diana said that maybe it was actually TWO columns instead of one. I realized that she must be right! There are two columns on that stone base, one behind the other. Now that I see that, I think I'll be able to paint it so that it makes more sense. Thank you, Diana!

In two weeks, I'll work more on Misse - she is proving to be very challenging with her short white fur and wiry musculature and ribs. I'll also work on the ground, and lighten and put detail into the foliage just to the right of the column(s). I'm enjoying this copy, and these two doggies are very popular with the visitors. Looking forward to next time!