Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Tuesday Nights At The Lipking Studio

Life Study, three hours
By Johanna Spinks
Oil on linen, 12 x 16

Most Tuesday nights I head over to Jeremy Lipking's engaging studio to paint. I have done this for the last two years. He is an inspiration and a true young master at the top of his game.

Lipking paints it all very well from figure to landscape. Plus, he is a generous teacher to everyone in the room. One of the main lessons for the room last night was to work your dark mass shapes first before moving toward the light. Amen. Place your eyewear in the sketch toward the end of your painting. Make sure the eyes are 'pushed back' behind those frames, painted down in value a bit. Treat the under-eye area with kid gloves. Gently. Softly.

I will never paint like Lipking. No-one can. Many try but they are not as good.

That's not the idea. I believe in surrounding myself with greatness, hence showing up the last two years.

Check out Lipking's work here You can also join his ongoing class in Agoura Hills, C.A, by signing  up directly from his website. Look out also for his solo show at the Arcadia Gallery in New York, opening this December 12th. More information here

Above is my three hour study from last night. The room was packed and I was standing near the back. I needed the model's glasses. But I like wot I got. I love a gal in glasses.

Below, a taste of the evening Lipking style!

Close-up of Lipking's sketch. Copyright Jeremy Lipking

Last night at The Lipking Studio - some great work going on.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Thursday, October 17, 2013

How To Paint Posthumous Portraits

Posthumous Portrait Commission
Morning All:

Shipping out of the studio this week is a 22 x 24 posthumous portrait for a client in The South, pictured here.

During my portrait painting career so far I have been honored many times to do this type of sensitive commission work and I consider it an honor each time. I don't take the task lightly.

I also feel the art of posthumous portraits  reflect how important modern day portraiture remains.  A life captured on canvas, reflected on, through an artist's searching eye, captures something  that the camera doesn't. This type of work is also very meaningful for the grieving family and can help in their time of sadness.

Sometimes these portraits are displayed at the memorials. Imagine 300 people judging if you have a likeness!

So how does one approach this delicate painting task? Here a a few thoughts I have:

*Get the best photo reference possible of the sitter, at different ages and stages of his life.  You don't want to paint them in their final days.

*Talk to the family, if you can, for any insights into the deceased sitter. Stories and memories. Character traits.  Do your homework. Know who you are painting so you can put some of that into the painting.

*Find out if there was a favorite tie or a favorite something or other you can add in that isn't in the photos. These little touches can be very special for the family.

*Deliver the portrait in a very timely manner. A grieving family doesn't need to be kept waiting too long.

*Expect the unveiling to be very emotional. Leave your clients alone in the room for a few minutes with the portrait before seeking comments or approval.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Moulin Rouged,

Busy time in the study meeting portrait Holiday deadlines...basically I am painting every day right up until December 23rd. A posthumous portrait of a doctor for a southern hospital, a three child trip tych,  a 15 figure beach scene for a repeat client's nursery, and an engagement beach scene for a lovely couple in Australia.

I do allow myself a little fun though. Do you? Hope you like this new corset. It will be in my Holiday Corset Calendar Collection! Watch this space.

Moulin Rouged
Oil on Linen
Free Shipping!corset-art/ca5b

Saturday, October 5, 2013