The great Russian masters from the Ilya Repin Institute from St. Petersburg taught me classical painting skills in 2008. First the bones, then muscle and the rest. Then flesh which sets on bones, muscles and all. And. Then in some cases can be lots of hair.
If I paint a Spaniel, that has same body proportions as another one, it becomes in the painting to look like a different dog if the hair goes wrong. A dogs persona – along its whole lotta´character – is its fur.
But boy do they move about. Taking a still sitting portrait photo (to be my painters scetch later) requires plenty of goodies prizing and cuddles bribary to the jumpy best pal at that moment. The more dogs get happy, the more they run about. So I need to be really clever if I want to paint one.
People are easier. You just say, “please sit for portrait”. And most do.
Still, very few people can do that too for two weeks in a row. At the Ilya Repin school, the model for painting lessons sat 8 hours a day. Even for an hourly pay, I admired them all.
Most women wanted to paint the young handsome guy which was one option. There was a bit of an easels crowd at his side as he resembled David by Michelangelo. I chose the older lady with crutches down at the other side. Most clients are not Adonis. To be honest, I love a wrinkly face. It is like a deep, interesting map of a life lived. Actually, I like every face I paint as they mirror that I can do what I love, which is to paint them.
The pritty boy with the angelic face had such smooth features, that the teacher had to show how to add in shadow if be a normal case face. But the 20- year old was truly beautiful from any esthetic angle.
But, oh, the dog portrait model! Some say its eyes do follow from the wall where the ready painting is been set up. Nice feedback as then I was able to put life into the painting.
Dogs are family members. Big ones. Small ones. Loud ones, quiet ones. I painted once a black Schnautzer. It was interesting as its twinkly eyes rose from the black, blue, lilac and brown surface. Black is seldom black. It has tints of all kinds of dark from the Spectrum ranges.
My favourite has been this little Chihuahua called Bruno. Every time I went near with my camera, he quietly closed his eyes, but kept his cool. Whilst a human palm was firmly holding his teeny posture straight, he wanted to be aware of a possible flash.
I wish to some day start a real life painting of a stylish race horse. That would need time. The animal is so graceful, that every small gesture of how it uses movement, has discretion along might.
#dogpainting #dogandart #dogart #chihuahua #thespaniel #greatstallions