End of a Session


Andy, 18x24, by Jeffrey Smith

My Thursday night portrait class has come to an end for another session.  I’ll be taking the summer off to paint plein air, and will return in the fall. The end of a class brings up many emotions. I’m proud of the hard work that my students put in. I’m happy for the results that …
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Portrait Class at The Atelier Minneapolis


Jill | oil on panel | Jeffrey Smith

The fall term of my portrait class at The Atelier has come to an end — It was a great session!  I felt truly blessed to have the chance to work with such a wonderful group of people! I was also fortunate enough to spend the final night of the class working on the portrait sketch you …
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My Father the Model.


For anyone that has seen my work before, the man in the above oil sketch may look familiar… it’s my Dad.  The new session of my Thursday night portrait class is up and running.  The only problem that we ran into, was a previous commitment from our usual model for Thursday, September 25th.  That left …
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Back to School


After a great summer break, my weekly portrait class has begun again at The Atelier in Minneapolis.  After our first night, last night, I think this is going to be a really great group to work with. I’m lucky as a teacher to have several returning student.  It’s always nice to think that people take …
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About Face


So you’ve covered the canvas.  The portrait is done, right? Not quite.  After the lay-in is complete,  it’s time to step back and looks at the painting.  The best question that you can ask yourself at the start of each studio session is, “What is the goal of this painting?”  In this case, the goal is to produce …
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The Lay-in


So the canvas is ready.  You put out your paint. Now what? How and where do you begin?  It’s time for the lay-in, or block in. It’s the term used for the first round of paint to go on the canvas I try simplify the image as best I can to start with.  No amount …
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Charcoal Compostion Study, the design takes shape.


After the design has been decided upon, a full size charcoal, or cartoon,  is produced.  This gives me a chance to really workout the composition on the actual scale and size that the final painting will be completed on.  The figure seen in the portrait are drawn at an approximate life size.  After the cartoon …
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The Gouache Study


  This is one of several studies that I completed for a recent portrait commission.  It was painted on white watercolor paper with a  limited pallet of gouache paint. What the heck is gouache? Gouache is similar to watercolor; both are water soluble in a gum arabic based. Gouache is different in that it is …
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