Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Frederic Church's Area-by-Area Process

This plein-air oil study by Frederic Church was left unfinished, which gives us a glimpse into his process.

Bavarian Landscape; Frederic Edwin Church (American, 1826–1900)
USA; brush and oil, pencil on academy board.; 27.3 x 30 cm (10 3/4 x 11 13/16 in.)

Church first outlined big areas of the scene in pencil over a sealed and toned paper surface. He then covered them in oil paint from the top to the bottom. 

This area-by-area method of painting is sometimes called "window shading" because it's like pulling down a window shade.


Jim Douglas said...

I'm always surprised artists work in this fashion. In my opinion, leaving areas paintless, rather than working the entire image up together, makes it more difficult to judge the colors and values. Wouldn't you agree? What might the corresponding advantage be to accepting this difficulty?

Mitch M. said...

It seems that working top to bottom is similar to working back to foreground but are there differences that suggest one way is better than the other?

Mitch M. said...
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