Monday, July 02, 2007

Finally, a New Post!

I can't believe that my last post was on June 12th and it is now July 2nd! MUCH has happened since then and I have been very busy. I have had several diagnostic tests and have found that I have a very significant tear in my right rotator cuff and must have surgery. And yes, that is my painting arm. My son has been staying with us for the past several weeks and is probably staying on a semi-permanent basis. His three teen-age kids were also with us for a week during this time. My sister arrived while all of them were still here and Tom was out of town for 2 weeks! I have a new employee at the frame shop/gallery and my talented student, Alexandria, is with me three days a week. I have just completed my portrait of Jonathan (photo below) and am now working on the next. And then last week, my wonderful daughter, Kerry, who wears an artificial right leg, fell and broke her left ankle! Need I say more?

Now back to Art Matters! Below is the completed painting of Jonathan, the early stages of which I have posted before. His mother and sister love it and the father will be surprised! Click on images to view a larger version.

Copyright Pat Aube Gray, Oil on Linen, 32 x 48

Next I want to do a little bragging about Alexandria, who will be a senior in high school come September. When she first came to me last year, her drawings were very typical of almost any sixteen year old. Her interest was in drawing faces, but those she had previously produced were flat and cartoonish, lacking form and antomical accuracy. After only one three hour lecture, with little thumbnail demos in explanation of form and values, dimension and structure, etc., Alexandria's true ability was immediately apparent. She was instantly able to grasp the concepts and apply them to her work. In a rush to paint, her first painting was actually a portrait and she did a very good job. Then on to a still life from a setup, which is now framed and hanging in her parents' home - it was that good! We are now back to the basics, using the atelier concept of drawing first, painting later, as drawing is the foundation for all two-dimensional art. In addition to drawing from life, I have Alexandria copying from Charles Bargue plates, the same as those used in French Academies during the mid nineteenth century.
When you see the photo below, I think you will agree that she is making great progress!

Graphite on Toned Paper, highlighted with white charcoal, 18 x 24

I have a couple of small paintings completed and will most likely post them tomorrow. Until then, have a great evening and remember that Art Matters!