Friday, May 10, 2013

Head of a Young Girl, after Greuze

I'm still working on heads and faces.

I found a book with some great photos of drawings by the French painter Jean-Baptiste Greuze (1725 - 1805). He painted genre scenes that are coming back into favor, though they tend to  sentimentality.

However, his drawings are another matter entirely. There is no better way to appreciate his skill than to attempt a master copy of one of his drawings. I hope to do several in the coming weeks. This Head of a Young Girl is deceptive in its simplicity. It is balanced as finely as a suspension bridge.

Here is the copy in process.

You can see that I failed to capture the subtle head tilt. I noted the error and continued, knowing that even an imperfect copy could teach me much. How did he get that expression of guileless innocence, just a bit serious, a bit sweet? I'm still wondering, but in the process I gathered some clues.

Here is the final copy. Conte pencil on paper.

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