Sunday, October 12, 2014

Aurora - the process

Aurora is 'dawn' in Italian. In the Dawn tomb of Lorenzo di Medici at the Medici Chapel is a sculpture piece by Michelangelo. Click here for a link to see the full-sized reclining figure. 

Recently, I completed a 13-week study on the bust of Dawn. Why did it take 13 weeks and not 13 hours?  Simply because oil paint is built on layers and the method of achieving a highly finished piece of work demands this kind of attention.  Here are the main steps to the process in case you might like to try this out someday! 

So I begin with a 50cm x 70cm campitura of a value #3. 

The most important step is the foundation and this is the drawing phase. I spend a lot of time on this section to make sure all the shapes are in place. A little shadow is added to help me see those shapes better.

 The next phase is the dead colouring phase where basic colours are laid down.

 Here is where I begin to do a general gradation of colours to bring out the big form of the volumes. This is where values and ideas like fall of light come to play.

The 1st painting stage breaks down the general big form modelling into smaller fragments.

Finally, the 2nd painting focuses on the even smaller sub-forms and brings this piece to a high-quality finish.

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