Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Frederic Church Art Supplies

In Frederic Church's studio at Olana is a paint box full of art stuff, but it was put together after his time (he died in 1900).

The chalk is tailor's chalk, a hard chalk used by dressmakers to mark clothing. Has anyone tried it for sketching?


Roberto Quintana said...

I’m not sure why Church had tailor's chalk in his paint box, it seems like an odd choice for easel painting.
I keep an assortment of colored chalks of all kinds and sizes in my mural painting kit in my truck, along with those big, thick charcoal stix, conte’ and some pastels, and even carpenters’ crayons. I never know exactly what kind of urban surface I’m going to be laying-out on: stucco, brick, dry-wall. The little chalk-board stix wear-down really fast so the bigger and harder the chalk, the better. The different colors are great for working on colored surfaces. And I like to use green or blue for foliage, Terra cotta for figures, etc.
Maybe Church was getting ready to go do some urban Graffiti-Art, I wonder if he had any spray-cans laying around? -RQ

My Pen Name said...

I studied with Jon De Martin who (I think, it was years ago) had a direct teacher lineage from Gerome. I won't put words in his mouth but I seem to recall that part of our supply list was white chalk (not this particular kind) It was not used for drawing, it was used for correcting paintings So if you were painting, and noticed your proportions off you'd mark it with white chalk.

We used white because when you put on the correcting brush strokes, white did not muddy/darken, distort the color as much as black.

While it was not exactly this type of chalk - might be what Church had available, or he simply found it useful for this purpose.

Stephen and Nyree said...

I appears he used chalk to mark highlights and perhaps shade in some sketches if you look at "Lumber Mill." he used toned paper, graphite, gouache, and chalk.

The use of a red, blue, and yellow chalk (primary colors) suggests he would mix them as well for his sketches.

Evelyn said...

For a modern take on this, James, you might enjoy experimenting with ArtGraf's water-soluble squares, available in earth tones and in primary colors. (See https://www.dickblick.com/products/artgraf-viarco-pigmented-tailor-chalk-and-sets/#description)

Eugene Arenhaus said...

James, you seem to have some Indian link spam in the comments on this page...