Sunday, September 12, 2010

Monalisa Revisited - Oil painting

Being a landscape painter, I have always had an aversion for portrait painting for some reason. To help me overcome that and appreciate portraits more, I did this painting as part of my art enrichment class. Not that I am not a fan of Italian renaissance paintings, I never really cared for Da Vinci or Monalisa until my mentor picked it for me to paint.

Here is my version of Monalisa - done on a 16 X 20 Canvas, with water mixable oil.

More than Mona Lisa what drew me to the painting was the rocky, dream-like background that gave an illusion of surreal atmosphere. The challenging part for me in this whole painting is her hands - the play with the lights & shadows and just the suggestion of nails. And then there was the struggle to get her to do that faint smile and not make her look so serious.

Here is the close up of her face.

Though this hasn't convinced me to take up portraits, the main take away for me from this whole experience is to appreciate the expression & feeling that the artist is trying to convey. Needless to say I did a whole lot of appreciating when I went to the "Birth of Impressionism" exhibition @ Deyoung Museum here in SFO last week. I spent quite a lot of time looking & studying the portraits which is a big deal for me :-).

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