I have been lucky and immensely fortunate to draw at the Louvre Museum in Paris for a few years now. In doing so I have learnt some practical techniques and some aspects on how to use my time there productively. Read more
In 1720, the original workshop of La Maison du Pastel started producing its amazing pastels. By the first world war, there were more than 1000 colours for artists to choose from. By 1937, a dizzying 1650 colours were on offer, and when they were presented at the Exposition Internationale de Paris, they won the Gold Medal for excellence.
There were a small number of eighteenth century women artists that became prominent for their talent and teaching, the stylistic innovations they created, and their influence on other artists. Nowhere can this be better seen than in the life and works of the French painter Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun. Read more
Italian Renaissance artists became anatomists by necessity. They were attempting to refine a more lifelike human figure, even though opportunities to help their knowledge by direct anatomical dissection were restricted. In Vasari’s Lives of the Artists, he states that the sculptor, painter, and printmaker Antonio Pollaiuolo (1431–1498) was the “first master to skin many human bodies in order to investigate the muscles and understand the nude in a more modern way.” We can see his knowledge displayed beautifully in Pollaiuolo’s engraving Battle of Naked Men. The nude warriors are in extreme action showing their nearly flayed musculature. Read more
Last month I went to two drawing exhibitions in Paris, both in one day. What a delight. Firstly a trip to Drawing Now held in the newly restored Carreau du Temple in the Haut Marais, then in the afternoon to Salon du Dessin not far away at the old stock exchange, the Palais de la Bourse. A Temple and a Palace, both full of drawings, but there was a major difference between the two.
I am passionate about drawing the body, drawing out the human, representing the person, presenting the individual. Read more
As a reaction against the constricting teaching of the Parisienne École des Beaux Arts, the Grande Chaumière (academy of the large thatched cottage) was founded on the left bank of Paris in 1902, which at the time was the heart of forward thinking intellectual and artistic life. Read more
The human figure has been a subject in art for thousands of years, since prehistoric times. The classical Greek style is firmly rooted in analytical corporal observation, such as this inspirational late hellenistic era Laocoön and his Sons in the Vatican Museum. Read more
I like to pay attention. That is, I try and undertake all things I do with awareness, with a focus and concentration. Read more
An académie is an observational figure study drawn from a live model over many days such as that of French artist Pierre-Paul Prud’hon, who used drawings as the foundation for his work.