One of my favourite artists of all time is the American John Singer Sargent. He’s one of the finest portrait painters of all time who trained under Carolus-Duran in Paris. One of the disciplines that Sargent practised to develop his craft was to make careful studies of the old masters whom he admired, including Velazquez and Frans Hals.
As I’ve been working on a number of portrait commissions recently, I have found it helpful to adopt the same discipline, copying several of John Singer Sargent’s oil paintings, which I have found to be a great joy and delight. Studying Sargent’s paintings in this manner has given me a deeper appreciation of his undoubted skills in handling oil paint and his confident draughtsmanship.
My oil painting copy of Sargent’s “Head of a Capri Girl” can be seen at my Studio & Gallery Christmas Exhibition Preview this weekend in Ponteland. It has been painted from observation, directly onto a tinted board with the limited palette which Sargent would have used.