Saturday, January 15, 2011

Paul Cézanne's Studio

There's probably some truth to the idea that the first step towards manifesting your dream is to stick a photograph of it on your fridge. Well here is mine: Paul Cézanne's studio in Aix-en-Provence. I don't just want to visit it; I want to live in it and wake up every day to every single object in this room, staring for hours out the window at Montagne Ste. Victoire.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

How to Draw the Acanthus, Part III

'How to draw the Acanthus' is a perennial topic with a rich history. I covered some points in Part I and Part II, and am presenting these drawings as a further aid to drawing the acanthus scroll and related ornament. Though most suitable to hand-carving, they have a simplistic contour and sharp contrasts of light and dark which lend themselves well to an understanding of painted trompe l'oeil and the study of simple form.  They are not as ornate as say, the drawings of LePautre, which are very elaborate and detailed, but that also means that they're less confusing to study. I personally find them to be a little heavy for trompe l'oeil or grottesca, but there are some elemental ornate forms here that are really nicely treated.

And the truth is they are closer to what one might expect to paint in a real-world job situation. As gorgeous as the drawings of LePautre are, modern taste seems to tend towards economy of ornament - if we see ornament of this nature at all any more.

All Illustrations this article: "Motifs Ornementaux: Sculptures Sur Bois" [Editions H. Vial]