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PORTRAITS: Painting the Beautiful Women

Portrait painting, using bright and subdued colours.

The artists of bygone centuries are becoming a substantially forgotten class. However some of them would never be eliminated from our memory. Ingress is one of them. Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres (1780 –1867) was a French Neoclassical painter. His paintings suggest that he had tilted his work towards romanticism movement of painting. For a period he depended on the income received from miscellaneous pencil drawings he did for the tourists. La Grande Odalisque is one of his memorable paintings that he did on commission.

The French artist Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres had acquired his style of painting and drawing from the early stage of his career. He painted the dresses of his models with equal grace as he painted the spotless skin of the women. During the passage of his artistic journey, his style of functioning rarely changed. He had from the beginning of his art career proved her artistic prowess in executing the suavity of outline and extraordinary control of the parallel that would help modeling the forms. Ingres believed that the drawing is the probity of the art, the honesty of the art depicted. So he applied his beliefs in his paintings, too. Thus his paintings reflected the presence of proper drawing and also witness the firmness of the outline underneath the art-piece.

In this portrait Ingress had displayed most of the characteristics his paintings were known to be possessing. After Ingres completed many illustrious portraits of the people of royal families and other people, he got the commission for painting this portrait of an extraordinary beautiful lady. The lady was twenty-eight-year-old princesse de Broglie (1825–1860). It was given to the artist’s understanding that the princess was shy in postures and deeply religious.


In this portrait the lady is unquestionably beautiful beyond description. But the artist has poured his painting skills and intuitions in making the portrait so beautiful. Apart from natural beauty of the model princess—the lady sitting for portrait—the use of blue colour catches the viewers’ eyes. Bright colours, blue and yellow used as dominant colours, with a subdued and smooth background, narrate how the painter had mastered his skill for creating a chiaroscuro. This has created a sense of volume in the figure.

Portrait of the Princess Albert de Broglie Oil on canvas Size121.2 × 90.7 cm Metropolitan Museum of Art Manhattan, New York, USA

PORTRAITS OF BEAUTIFUL WOMEN

PORTRAIT PAINTINGS : Beauty Moving From Palette to Canvas

Pierre-Auguste Renoir - Girl Braiding Her Hair (Suzanne Valadon)
In his late years of life Renoir had cultivated interest in classic art with the brush of an impressionist. He concentrated on ensuring that how the sunlight affects flesh tones. Renoir was very much affected by the beautiful models who worked for him. Here a lady painter herself had posed as a model for the painting.

Suzanne Valadon was a French painter. Here she had modeled for Renoir's painting Girl Braiding Her Hair
Pierre Auguste Renoir (1841 – 1919) was a master in the impressionist style that celebrated beauty from whatever elements he might come across. He had painted several beautiful portraits adoring the charm of the models sitting before him. His paintings and portraits are notable for their vibrant light and saturated colour, focusing on people in candid composition, and fusing the details of a scene through freely brushed touches of colour.

Many artists have painted their own faces, self-portraits. The self-portrait is one of the favourite subects, and to an extent fundamental to the history of Western art. From the time of master painter Jan Van Eyck, and through the exotic explorations of Rembrandt, or the self-depictions of Edvard Munch to the giant pixellated compositions of Chuck Close, the subject of portrait painting has varied; enormously enriching itself in respect of purpose and style. Here the master artist had painted his self portrait. (Images courtesy By Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841–1919) Description French painter Date of birth/death 25 February 1841(1841-02-25) 3 December 1919(1919-12-03) Location of birth/death Limoges Cagnes-sur-Mer Work location Paris (painting by Renoir) [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons)

PENCIL DRAWING: Jane Morris, Pre-Raphaelite Muse

Learn Drawing Portraits of beautiful women, Pencil drawings of women, Drawings of women with a flower.
The Roseleaf -- portrait of Jane Morris by Rossetti

Dante Gabriel Rossetti is the artist who had drawn this pencil drawing. He was an English poet and a painter of nineteenth century.

The lady who had sat as a model for many of Rossetti’s paintings is Jane Morris. In pre- Raphaelite movement the painters chose their near relatives as models for their painters, especially the female models. The female models were generally sisters, lovers or wives of the painters or their friends’. Jane Morris was believed to be Rossetti’s lover and she had married his close friend William Morris. This portrait drawing and such many drawings are done before the painters took brushes and pallets in hands. Here Rossetti has shown the play of emotion as the strong force for the aesthetic experience.

A preparatory pencil drawing is a must for proceeding to a portrait, either in water colour or oil. The above drawing is the example of the preparatory drawing by the master portrait painter Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Here the artist had, before proceeding to canvass, done the drawing in and black pencil. Rossettiis the artist who had drawn above pencil drawing. Rossetti’s was famous for his poetry, too.

Jane Morris was Muse for the group of artists which were known as Pre-Raphaelite group in London. Jane Burden (Morris) was an artist herself. She painted, too. But her fame came from her being model for the great painters of the group. William Morris, a well-known artist of the time had married with her. She was his muse. But she was the Muse to her husband’s close friend, a great artist, Gabriel Rossetti.
Jane Morris (The Blue Silk Dress)
From the Letters written by Rossetti to Jane Morris, it is known that Jane Morris had made the blue dress herself. And she was deeply and artistically, too, involved in the choice of the dress and the pose itself. The unbelievable fame received by this painting had led the duo of Rossetti and Jane Morris to think about a wide series of subject pictures that followed this one. Rossetti was known for his imaginative and realistic paintings; he was equally known for his intimate relationships with the women he loved and worked with. The talks of close relationship between Jane and Rossetti had always clouded the artistic sky of London.
Rossetti painted several paintings, keeping Jane as model. His most famous painting is titled as ‘Proserpina’ or ‘Proserpine,’, a Goddess of Fertility. Here in this painting, titled as ‘Jane Morris' (The Blue Silk Dress), Jane had modelled for Rossetti. [Image Courtesy Dante Gabriel Rossetti [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons Wikimedia Commons , Dante Gabriel Rossetti [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons]

WATERCOLOUR PAINTING : PORTRAIT PAINTINGS

PORTRAIT IN WATER COLOUR : While painting a portrait of a person, the artist must learn the structure of the face first.
John Smart: Watercolour on Ivory Portrait Miniature (1782)

While painting a portrait of a person, the artist must learn the structure of the face first. Then comes the idea about the structure and defining of the anatomy. There after the painter can use his or her knowledge starting with the simple drawings of the form to the finalization of the portrait. Here the preparatory pencil drawings would help artist to make the painting a mistake proof and well-proportioned one. However the complicated the face and the figure to be painted may be, the artist should take time to learn the exact anatomy.

A well-painted portrait would show the inner qualities of the person whose portrait is done, as the aim of the artists cannot be limited to painting the contours of the face and other limbs of the subject or the model. (Image Courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

While doing the portrait, the adept handling of watercolours is quite essential, too, as there are very few chances of correcting any mistake done while painting. These colours also need special care on the part of the artists and the owner of the paintings.

TIPs FOR PORTRAIT ARTISTS: Allow your model for a rest after one hour. The constant sitting would make him or her bored and the expressions on face would change considerably.

When an artist decides to make portrait in pencil or watercolours, the prime factor he would think about how the light would fall on the face and other visible part of the person being portrayed. The light, the sunlight, can be bolstering or pale; the light can be intense or diffuse; it would affect the outcome of the final picture accordingly. The watercolorist sets his or her palette and watercolours following the pattern of the light.

Portrait painting in watercolour is an art supported by intuition. It is the art an artist should cultivate. It is also a technique that can be learnt. Portrait painting in water colours can be very challenging assignment. It is complicated, as the water colouring would not allow artist to rectify any error.

Be Ready in Advance

Before starting a watercolour portrait, one should consider several factors. It should be decided in advance which colours are to be used. The tonal values of colours also should be thought about. In case of oil colours, you have an option of repainting on a layer that you want to hide. In watercolours such facilities are not available.

In addition to this there are other aspects like technique for painting hair and giving the effect of lighting are major factors to keep in mind. Here are some and useful tips to help you paint a portrait.

How to Start

Generally the painter starts his or her work of portraying from eyes of the person to be portrayed. Painting the eyes is the factor that can make or break the whole portrait, as the eyes should resemble near to perfection with the real appearance. While painting both of the eyes, an artist tries to get the relationship between all the features accurate. It would be better to start with colouring the corners of eyes, keeping in mind the distance to the bridge of nose from the eyes. It is like letting the eyes and nose having a live dialog.

Know the Facial Features Well

Keen attention on the face is a necessary aspect in portraying. Artist can take help of photographs. But the person to be portrayed should give several personal sittings. It would make the artist familiar with the facial features of the person being portrayed. In case of water colour, this task would become tricky, as the artist have to complete the portrait within a given time.

TIPs FOR PORTRAIT ARTISTS: Avoid placing the head too high or too low on canvas, as it would make the person taller or smaller in height. Keep the sides lighter, giving full highlight to the portrait.

Moreover artist should avoid concentrating exclusively on one factor for long. While drawing with pencil or painting with your brush, you should constantly moving between the various features you can see on the face. Paint the hair in visible mass. It can be dark or light coloured. While painting hair, do remember adding details for a few strands but not the entirety of the hair. The paint texture can be added by glazing, as this is possible when you are doing it in watercolour. The glazing of a transparent colour would add liveliness to the portrait. (Image Courtesy Photobucket)

(Other Images Courtesy By Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres (1780–1867) Description French painter Date of birth/death 29 August 1780(1780-08-29) 14 January 1867(1867-01-14) Location of birth/death Montauban Fran├žais : Montauban Paris Paris Work location Paris, Rome Deutsch: Florenz Fran├žais : Paris, Rome, Florence (Art Renewal Center Museum, image 9441.) [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons)
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