View Full Version : Flemish technique - WIP Silk and silver

Jan Matěják
02-15-2010, 03:59 PM
:) This is my last copy of Alexeis Antonov painting.I just finish Dead layer...next layer will be followed after proper drying: Enjoy photos Jan Matěják. :)

02-17-2010, 12:06 AM
nicely done especially the tone. but the shape of that silverware is a bit imperfect i think...

Raiz de David
02-17-2010, 08:12 AM
It is awesome, I like it specially the relfections in pot.

02-18-2010, 11:49 PM
Very nice work,Jan.

I do feel you got the sequence pics the wrong way round though. :)

03-14-2010, 01:04 AM
I want to see the finished picture! This is stunning! :)

03-14-2010, 11:35 AM
It's looking very good Jan - will you please describe the specifics of the Flemish technique you're following? There are different schools of thought on this, I'd be interested to know what the next stages will be...

03-14-2010, 09:27 PM
He's following the techniques of Alexi Antonov,who's the best I've seen up to now for the 7 Layer Flemish technique.

04-06-2010, 04:52 AM
Greetings Jan,

your picture looks very well!

But, please let me say something. Ist is only an idea of mine and you should not understand this as any kind of critic. It try to say it as good as my english allows it ...

As i started to look for advices to paint with oil, especially like the old masters i have found A. Antonov too. I was amazed by his technique and so glad that i know now some of the secrets. I watched some of his movies and after a while i startet to paint my firs pictures (after him). But as more i have watched his films as more i was getting a bit annoyed.
He said some words i cant understand or tolerate. Some stuff like ..."this is how the old masters paint and you must not be critical to this advices" .. or his teasing against modern painters and so on.

Later i found some books from Max Doerner and Kurt Wehlte. If you are interested in painting then you should not miss these books. They are both restaurators from germany and telling not only how to apply the colour. They tell all the technical stuff you need. And i guess, thats the most annoying part of A. Antonovs films. He is teaching the technique from the old masters but nothing about the technical part. For example he isnt telling anything about the effect of the grounds, which is really important. He said that a traditional imprimature should be made with oil. But that seems to be totally wrong. Doerner and Wehlte are restaurators as i said, they examined the pictures til the ground and they found that nearly all older pictures are underpaintet with tempera. One reaso for this is, that tempera dries faster. But a more important reason is the oil. They say that oil is a "necessary evil" part in oilpainting. Try to reduce the use of oil to a minimum.

But A. Antonov uses the oil so much. For example to rubb a thin film of oil under ech layer before you beginn to paint, the oil in the medium and also the bought oilcolours, which also have in the most cases a too much of oil.

Normally, the ground sucks in some of your oil. After you have used to much oil it cant be sucked down in the ground anymore. The result is, that the oil is building a film over your colour. Antonov try to remove this circumstance with the onion. But this will help only for a moment.

Doerner is telling also about the applying of colour. So they also talk about the grey underpainting and how to paint further. Antonov applies the colour over the grey underpainting too thick. He doesent tells about that a glaze of paint sometimes was applied just with a finger or a cloth.

I guess i can tell you a half book but my english is not good enough for all what i want to say.

But let me tell you one more thing. Remember that some of the pictures we look at today are more than 500 years old. And the reason for this is also that all these pictures are build up in a technical perfect way. And that is also, and maybe the most secret of the old masters. Sure they used the colour in a perfect way. But they also used their materials in this way. In modern times, there is Antonov right, painters thought that all this technical stuff disable the work and you can see in Doerners book how he tells from pefrect looking pictures that become black or the colour felt of because they used wrong materials. But just using a grey underpainting is not a technical advatage. It also prevent a effect that old masters used often. Doerner describes it as coloured grey. For example you make a imprimature and the you just light up every part of your picture where light is with white but you will leave you shadowareas nearly brown. Then the white ground will shine through your picture. When you apply your colour now then just very thin in shadows so that the white ground will shine through it. As you can read in the books of both autors they tell that in some pictures of Rembrandt you can see in the shadows the brushlines of the imprimature.

here is an example ..


But as i said, you can, if you want, think about what i have said. I just thought that you might be interessted in it.



04-07-2010, 07:22 AM
So beautiful! Thank you!

04-07-2010, 07:44 AM
This is a very good work Jan!! :thumbsup:

04-08-2010, 02:59 AM

What an excellent post with important information, I will definately look up the books.

yes, oil is a necessary evil in oil painting.
The old masters knew this and that's why their works has lasted for centuries. An important aspect of oil painting that many doesn't know today. Of course, we also want our works to last for centuries. :)

A teacher of mine told me that that after oil painters began to forget the negative effects of oil, theres's a significant degradation of quality in the paintings. For example. they darkened much quicker. The skys in some paintings became almost black. And this had happened only after 20-30 years.

The funny thing is that my teacher got his art education from a restaurator. He also taught the method with egg tempera in the underpainting.

04-17-2010, 12:47 AM
here is another variation of this type of underpainting - somewhere between where you are and this Antonov fellow. He doesn't seem to be hung up on the number '7' either. Nice demo. Check it out:


Jan; I do hope that you don't get stuck only doing copies of Alexi Antonov paintings. There is value to doing copies but try doing your own set up. Nice to try something from life - just to see the difference. Excellent work though - gotta hand it to you with pleasure!

Jan Matěják
08-15-2010, 01:28 PM
some progress

Jan Matěják
11-06-2010, 06:01 PM
Finished piece : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8O6Oh1e_oQ

11-07-2010, 10:19 AM
The finished product is beautiful and I love your step by step approach.

The only thing I am not crazy about are the highlights of the sheet in the finished piece, they don't seem to match the previous step... may be its the lower left-hand side.

11-10-2010, 04:42 PM
This is beautiful!
Daneil 66 that info is very helpful!

02-05-2011, 12:00 AM
Thanks for sharing each step, that is a wonderful example!
I like Antonov, including his opinions :)

Jan Matěják
02-05-2011, 07:27 AM
U R Welcome :-)

Thanks for sharing each step, that is a wonderful example!
I like Antonov, including his opinions :)