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March 14, 2017

Sotheby's Asian Modern and Contemporary Auction

This is Asia Week in New York City - when museums, galleries, and auction houses focus on Asian Art.  Several years ago my friend Pat and I discovered the Asian Modern and Contemporary Auctiuon Preview at Sothebys and we look forward every year to visiting some of our now favorite artists.  One of them is B. Prabha and her two paintings this year did not disappoint us.  This was my watercolor copy of one of her oil paintings - drawn at the preview and painted at home. 

B. Prabha Fisherwoman

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I also fell in love with "The Victims" by Kattingeri Krishna Hebbar, and I wrestled with drawing it from the rectangular image onto the page in my square sketchbook.  But I wanted the experience of putting this beautiful painting into my muscle memory, and tried to convert oil into watercolor when I had time at home.

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This is my photo of the original Hebbar painting.  Hope you like it as much as we did.  Pat, Benedicte, and I were sketching in different parts of the exhibit when a Sotheby's employee stopped to talk to me while I was sketching.  I told her we came to see the auction preview each year and have favorite artists - Naguib Mahfouz, M.F. Husain, and B. Prabha among them.  She said that they were artists who didn't become abstract expressionists, and remained true to their figurative paintings.

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March 10, 2017

Marathon Wednesday March 8, 2017

During February and March I spend Wednesday afternoon at Figure Drawing in Battery Park City, with multiple 2, 5, 10, and 20 minute poses.  These are two of my drawings of Marilyn from yesterday.  They were drawn with a General Sketch and Wash pencil of soluble graphite, and then "painted" with clear water.  I was thrilled that I had two great hands to sketch, and I'm trying so hard to improve these skills.

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XXX 

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After supper at Hudson Eats in Brookfield Center, I move uptown to FIT for my Watercolor Comps Class.  Last week we used a full palette, and tried to use pale and intense colors for a vase of sunflowers- reviewing  how to control pigment and water.   This week, our challenge was to significantly increase the amount of water we used, still controlling it, while painting a copy of a commercial perfume bottle photo.  We talk lots about illustrations and commissions during the evening and I love the studio time.  Photo left, my painting on the right.

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March 7, 2017

New Museum Exhibit Openings

An Alexei Jawlensky exhibit just opened at Neue Gallery and Pat, Benedicte and I began our Art Exhibits day there.  I was only familiar with one of his portraits before seeing the exhibit, and really liked most of them.  I was less impressed with his landscapes and didn't like most of his abstract art.  This is a photo from the stairwell at the museum, since photos are not permitted.

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I really liked the portrait of The Gardener and sketched him, adding paint from an online image when I reached home. 

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After lunch we walked several blocks to the Met for the Seurat Circus Sideshow exhibit.  It was also a good exhibit, featuring many of Seurats' conte drawings (which I first saw at MoMA several years ago and love more than his paintings) and several of his circus pointillist paintings.  But it also contains works from his contemporary artists and their circus art - including Daumier.

I definitely will return to the exhibit to sketch more, but at that hour of the afternoon I just sat in front of a HUGE mural painting by Fernand Pelez and sketched a great clown.  There are 3 groups of life-size circus performers across this very large painting and the clown captured the feeling from this exhibit best for me.

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March 3, 2017

Watercolor Comps Illustration Class at FIT

The first 4 classes of my Watercolor Comps Illustration class at FIT were designed to teach, or review, painting with watercolors.  We had two classes with nude models, and several exercises using very limited palettes.  The first model was painted with only French Ultramarine Blue and Burnt Sienna, and the second model was painted, in two poses, with Alizarin Crimson and Viridian Green.  The other exercises, in the first 3 weeks, also used limited palettes and photo illustrations to copy.  This week we had a demo using liquid Frisket and then were each given a color copy of a painting by Eli Rosenthal to try to reproduce.   We expanded to a full palette of our choice in an effort to maximize the lightest lights and darkest darks - beginning with an underpainting in some areas - and using varying amounts of water to soften edges.

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