12 and 13 January 2013: dear London, on working in the studio … days 6 and 7

Saturday and Sunday were used for research …

Day 6 Saturday 12 January

Cass Art, near the NPG, has reinvented itself since I was last there and I bought some Letraset ‘Promarker’ pens, a couple more sketchbooks and some brushes – I like the new shop sign which reads:

(not my picture)

The National Gallery revealed some surprises. I started in the Espresso Bar on the ground floor to have a(nother) good look at the Auerbach felt-tip drawings from the paintings in the gallery.

This one is his take on the lovely red painting ‘Combing the Hair’ by Degas:

Auerbach felt tip drawing in NG from Degas' 'Combing the Hair'

Auerbach felt tip drawing in NG from Degas’ ‘Combing the Hair’

Looking at the original ‘Combing the Hair’ by Degas it has an almost Chagall-like quality today as the girl whose hair is being combed is floating across the painting. Reading the plaque next to the painting, I find out that it was owned by Matisse! Standing in front of it, I make a note: dare to be simple, draw in black pint with a large brush, infill with Cadmium Red (thick and thin) and use his black line as colour, tone and shadow as well .. amazing.

Degas’ Princess Pauline (see last post from 11 January for my research just the day before on her!) is in the same gallery so I have a good look, very Richter-esque.

Helene Rouart, standing behind her father’s chair is here – a real back to the beginning moment, as I transposed her when I was an RA student. He has painted clear blue and orange lines on her arm this time.

Van Gogh’s ‘Farms near Auvers’, 1890, also has coloured marks.

Cezanne found painting his ‘Bathers’ hard, there is much overpainting in evidence, wet on dry – this took a while.

I did a little sketch of his ‘Avenue at Chantilly’ , 1888, using my amazing new pens.

How does Velazquez use so little paint?

I had a go at a study of Rembrandt’s ‘Self-portrait aged 63’:

Day 6 Sketchbook page National Gallery, from Rembrandt

Day 6 Sketchbook page National Gallery, from Rembrandt

Day 7 Sunday 13 January

I visited the beautiful Columbia Road Flower Market and a nearby book market, but ended up in Battersea Park looking at trees, yet another return to art school subject matter:

Day 7 tree drawing, Battersea Park

Day 7 tree drawing, Battersea Park

This couple were having Hackney fish and chips for supper (so was I):

Fish and chips in Hackney

Fish and chips in Hackney

 

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