When you coast through a painting you never learn as much as when you struggle as hell.

This painting was a real pain to paint as I struggled to find the right amount of colour in the whites (I tend to exagerate them a lot. Been so since my first ever cast painting at school where I saw crazy purples and greens everywhere!) and to have the face attract as much attention as the very contrasty black lines of the shirt.

My initial drawing was sloppy which is the best way to create obstacles for yourself from the get go. I also initially painted the face very quickly because I was too excited about the shirt and it was truly awful for most of the process. Which is why there are no in between shots! haha! I was sure I had one with a piece of paper covering the face midway through the process but I cannot find it on my hard drive anymore. Will post it if I do.

But truly : I could NOT look at it!

If this can teach anything it is that no matter how much your painting sucks, there is often a key to be found to reestablish a balance. In my case looking at that Sorolla painting helped a lot - it gave me the solution I needed: I ended up darkening and warming up the face somewhat to prevent it from blending in too much with the background and add variety to the painting.. I learnt a lot about the use of values/tones in a fairly monochrome painting while figuring out how to make the whole thing come together.

Sunday Apr 4 @ 09:49pm

mariasweeney asked: Just wanted to thank you for your process shots and gilding tutorial! It's very helpful, hope you'll continue!! Beautiful work, too! <3

hey! Sorry for the late reply, I need to be here more… I’ll post some more processes soon, glad you like them :) thank you

Sunday Apr 4 @ 09:14pm

gdiary asked: i love your works. do you use digital stuff too(tablet,photoshop)? and did you study in france?

Thanks! I studied at a classical atelier in Italy, where they use the 19th century French method, which -ironically- I could not learn anywhere in France.

got a second hand tablet once and thought it would be the panacea - easy colour sketches instead of messy gouache, etc… but I couldn’t get the hang of the pen. I think it was defective or something (right, maybe I actually naturally suck at digital art :P). I use photoshop to retouch my reference photos quite a lot though, to get the feel of an image before I start working on the final painting.

Art student yourself? I see from your pics you’re in Paris?

Sunday Apr 4 @ 09:12pm
First gouache sketch for patterned self portrait. There may be a rabbit&#8230; well, it will make sense in time!

First gouache sketch for patterned self portrait. There may be a rabbit… well, it will make sense in time!

Friday Jan 1 @ 05:42pm
I suddenly realise I don&#8217;t even remember what the last time was that I painted someone with their eyes open.

I suddenly realise I don’t even remember what the last time was that I painted someone with their eyes open.

Sunday Jan 1 @ 07:28pm
Rough early stage of new painting

Rough early stage of new painting

Wednesday Jan 1 @ 09:27pm
Work in progress sneak peek

Work in progress sneak peek

Sunday Dec 12 @ 08:31pm
Experimenting! Work in progress

Experimenting! Work in progress

Wednesday Dec 12 @ 11:51am
Finally got around to developping film from last year&#8217;s trip to Ireland. So excited! The main reason I didn&#8217;t do it before is because I have no scanner for medium format negatives&#8230; so I used my laptop screen as a lightroom and my digital as a scanner of sorts&#8230; fun stuff

Finally got around to developping film from last year’s trip to Ireland. So excited! The main reason I didn’t do it before is because I have no scanner for medium format negatives… so I used my laptop screen as a lightroom and my digital as a scanner of sorts… fun stuff

Monday Dec 12 @ 01:19am

Expo small is beautiful à La Forge ce week end : un paquet d’artistes de divers horizons avec pour commun dénominateur le petit format des œuvres exposées

"Small is beautiful" exhibit last week end : a good bunch of artists of very different styles with for common ground the (small) size of their art

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J’exposais de toutes petites peintures sur bois

I went for “tiny is beautiful” myself with these oils on wood

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L’expo est organisée par l’asso Le Non Lieu au cœur de l’ancienne usine Cavrois-Mahieu à Roubaix, un lieu incroyable, encore totalement imprégné de son histoire, une belle sauvegarde de patrimoine. Il y a parfois quelques courants d’air mais un bon verre de vin chaud règle généralement le problème. J’en ai d’ailleurs récupéré la recette…

The exhibit is hosted by Le Non-Lieu in a former factory in Roubaix, northern France. It’s an incredible place, still infused with all of its past industrial glory. It’s not always the hottest place but they serve delicious mulled wine so who cares?

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Mon modèle posant à côté de son tableau, vendu un peu plus tard :)

Model next to his painting, which got sold a little bit later

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C’était ma première fois (même si l’expo en est à sa cinquième édition) mais j’espère qu’il y en aura d’autres ! Un grand merci aux organisateurs.

Fifth edition of the show, first one for me - but hopefully not last! A huge thanks to the organisers. See you next year.

Thursday Dec 12 @ 12:22am
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