Saturday, August 28, 2010

Chunky Handling

“Chunky” or planar handling was especially popular with the classic illustrators when portraying men.

Note the squarish planes around the cheekbone and the forehead in this detail by Tom Lovell. The treatment gives the feeling of a roughly carved wood sculpture.

Also, note the alternation of edges: HARD-SOFT-HARD-SOFT as you go around the outside of the head.

9 comments:

Mary Bullock said...

Handsome dude!

Mark Harchar said...

Jim, it seems to be harder though to apply this technique to woman figures and still have them retain that soft, feminine quality? Any suggestions?

:::Julia Lundman::: said...

I love that look in those illustrations. I have tried it myself but cannot seem to mimic it very well. I bet YOU could pull it off though!
It would be cool if you could do a demo of techniques like this sometime.
-all my best,
Julia

Timothy Callister said...

Intresting observation, anyone who is intrested in this should look into Greg Manchess video tutorials.

billspaintingmn said...

Excellent post! (As always) Thanks!

tinoradman said...

Hundred years ago German painter Leo Putz used to paint employing the described method. It is enlightening to see his portraits of women done that way. Unfortunately, the best examples can not be found on net.
This one pic is small and do not show the bold and masterful brushwork on a face
http://www.froelichundkaufmann.de/out/pictures/z4/438510_3.jpg

Paul Schmid said...

Check out Robert Henri's chunky handling in this portrait of a child:

http://witheyeswideopen.wordpress.com/2008/06/21/robert-henri/

James Gurney said...

Mark, as Tino and Paul have suggested, this kind of handling can work very nicely with women and children subjects. Lovell and Loomis would have given more rounded contours and planes, however.

Timothy, yes! Greg Manchess is a great living exponent of this dynamic way of painting.

The Cincinnati painter Frank Duveneck is another master of this way of painting.

Jared Shear said...

Great post. Thank you for pointing the HARD soft HARD soft......I had never noticed that before.