More about Beauty

The Subversive Power of Beauty . This is our next read–so read it!!






Bernini is an important figure. His work has remarkable vigor and vitality, in no small part to the compositional nature of his gesture. This work translated into the pillars which you see below and can see in person if you go to the Vatican.

During this period there were many painters who took to the dramatic use of gesture.  Peter Paul Rubens was one, the Tiepolo family another and the Italian Mannerists such as Pontormo.




Peter Paul Rubens

The Flagellation of Christst-james-the-greater-conquering-the-moors-1750.jpg!Large-1










Saint James the Great Conquering the Moors














Jacopo Pontormo












There have been many expressions of this use of gesture throughout history. I will add a couple of contemporary examples below in the next couple of days/

Beth Cavener 

Beth Cavener


The Figure in Blocks

This project is meant to push you in the opposite direction of photography. Photographs capture massive amounts of information. Drawing from the figure, in this way, is about simplifying to identify only the most essential parts of the pose.

The challenge is to identify the relationship between the pelvis, rib cage and head. These three will define the essential movement of the body.

The limbs are the supporting cast in the play. Once you have established the relationships between the three forms you can enhance the qualities of the pose with the limbs. They can give context, weight and drama to the pose.e9780114b8c94e16cd762364b4a3dbe7



Project 2–Research an Artist

This is a recap of what is due for the research an artist project.

  1. One page statement. This should include three paragraphs.   8 points
    • The artists basic biographical information. This should include the art movement they are identified with and the primary historical context in which they worked.
    • Describe what attracted you to their work and quickly discuss the visual language they use/used. This is about gesture, line, value, materials, content, composition, etc.
    • Finally, briefly describe the process of uncovering the visual language you adopted from  your artist and how you incorporated it into your project.
  2. The body of sketches and drawings which are the byproduct of your preparation.  8 points
  3. The finished piece or pieces. 14 point

I apologize, I posted this later than I intended. Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions.


Trompe L’Oeil

Using chosen still objects, create a self portrait, or the portrait of an inspirational character (from the Bible, novel, movie…?), with out using an image of the person.

This project is to focus on two things:

  1. Well observed objects with a focus on color observation
  2. Creating visual depth within the shallow space.

Remember to include a color card or high chroma piece of paper to create a color in the cast shadows and reflected light area of at least one of your objects.

Draw the objects at roughly life size. The drawing should be 8×11.5 – 12×16 -ish but no larger. The composition does not have to be rectangular.

Here are a list of some of the visual tools that can used to create depth.

  • Perspective (Objects & Shadows)
  • Shadow Edges
  • Overlapping Shapes
  • High Chroma vs. Lower Chroma
  • Higher Contrast Forward, Lower Contrast Behind (value of the objects)
  • High Contrast, Low Contrast (Objects against the background.
  • Hard Edges vs. Soft Edges
  • Density of Visual Information

Media- Use Color Pencils, though you can use a normal pencil to sketch out the composition.

Artists to look at.

Guy Diehl

Scott Fraser

Russell Harris

Greg Mort

Mikel Glass

Will Wilson

Still life with Matisse, 2015, Guy Diehl, Acrylic on canvas, 22 x 30