Oil stick on paper. Last year I began to experiment with oil sticks by recreating paintings of Chaim Soutine. The exercise starts with quick sketches on a Post-It note that I later use to recreate the painting. I have no intention to duplicate the work, instead I loosely sketch attempting to capture a feeling or essence of the work. As the sketch
has no color I generate a new work with my own color schemes, some of which are similar to the original work and others parts departing entirely. Through the exercise I focus on working quickly while learning from a great artist.
I am now reading of the life and works of Amedeo Modigliani, an Italian painter of the early 1900’s residing in Paris for much of his artistic life. I admire his use of color and form, often flattening or slightly obscuring the images. The result focuses on color, light, line and emotion without limiting the work to depth of detail.
This oil stick sketch was based on Modigliani’s 1917 oil painting of Elana Povolozky, which now resides at the Phllips Collection in Washington, DC. Of interest to me was Modigliani’s use of light blue for shadows and with lines to express form (her face and jacket). Although the collar is tilted in an unrealistic way, the direction increases movement with a diagonal as compared to a more realistic horizontal line.