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Old 05-13-2018, 02:06 AM
Mona95 Mona95 is offline
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Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

I am mesmerized by the way Bouguereau handled skin tones and want to learn his glazing techniques. His skin tones are so natural and realistic. How did he achieve such smoothness and luminosity in his paintings?
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Old 05-13-2018, 08:42 AM
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Like in most old master's paintings, smoothness and luminosity come from tonal values very precisely adjusted.
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Old 05-14-2018, 05:38 AM
highwaykind highwaykind is offline
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Check out Cesar Santos on YouTube - he comes really really close to Bouguereau (and has several copies after him in his sketchbook videos).


I'm pretty sure I read that Bouguereau didn't glaze but painted alla prima? Santos paints in stages, a bit similar to the Flemish method.


Still clueless myself as to how to paint like Bouguereau, but that's the ultimate goal here too!
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Old 05-14-2018, 05:27 PM
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

It is not a big deal, you just need to time to build the forms and blend the paint while it is still wet. Check from time to time the Artist Magazine, there you will see that painting like that it is possible, if you are lucky, you can also find tutorials.

https://www.artistsnetwork.com/store...nting-with-oil
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Old 05-15-2018, 12:48 PM
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Quote:
Originally Posted by highwaykind
I'm pretty sure I read that Bouguereau didn't glaze but painted alla prima?
He did not work alla prima in his 'finished works'. From what I've seen, he used at least three layers. A rather dull (colorwise) underpainting, a colored, (semi-)opaque overpainting and a finishing layer of glazes, highlights and details.

Quote:
Originally Posted by french.painter
Like in most old master's paintings, smoothness and luminosity come from tonal values very precisely adjusted.
I agree. The 'secret' is getting all the subtleties right.
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Old 05-25-2018, 11:16 PM
JCannon JCannon is online now
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

A lot of people don't know that Bouguereau was a knife painter. Apparently, the lower layers were accomplished via brush, brought to a degree of finish, and then were refined with a palette knife. He was able to use that tool to attain transitions that were almost airbrush-like.

Here is a description of his technique:

https://www.artrenewal.org/Article/T...uereau-at-work

I've seen only two Bouguereaus "in the paint," and I must confess that I never would have thought that a knife was employed at any point.
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Old 05-26-2018, 05:59 AM
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Quote:
Originally Posted by JCannon
Bouguereau was a knife painter.
I don't think the information in the article justifies calling Bougeureau a knife painter. I'd say he used a knife to 'cut' away thick paint and ridges, to make a smoother surface and to increase transparancy. I do this too, sometimes, and the best time to do this is when the paint is starting to solidify - just like the article mentions.

Last edited by 0chre : 05-26-2018 at 06:01 AM.
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Old 05-27-2018, 03:50 PM
SeanInDublin SeanInDublin is offline
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

I recently found some interesting threads in the Wet Canvas archives which mention Bouguereau.

I was searching for information on the "velatura" technique.

Just one example

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=345599

There are a few more if you search

Best wishes
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Old 05-28-2018, 12:45 AM
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanInDublin
I recently found some interesting threads in the Wet Canvas archives which mention Bouguereau.

I was searching for information on the "velatura" technique.

Just one example

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=345599

There are a few more if you search

Best wishes

Velatura or Veladura is "Glazing", but translated from the Spanish Language.
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Old 05-28-2018, 07:23 AM
highwaykind highwaykind is offline
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Quote:
Originally Posted by 0chre
He did not work alla prima in his 'finished works'. From what I've seen, he used at least three layers. A rather dull (colorwise) underpainting, a colored, (semi-)opaque overpainting and a finishing layer of glazes, highlights and details.




Thanks for the info! Makes me slightly more hopeful that I can one day come close (because no way I can do this all in 1 go). Do you have a source for this? I'd love to see his underpaintings!
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Old 05-28-2018, 05:35 PM
SeanInDublin SeanInDublin is offline
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Quote:
Originally Posted by Humbaba
Velatura or Veladura is "Glazing", but translated from the Spanish Language.
"Trenta, quaranta velature!" was apparently something Titian said.

The Wet Canvas archives have a number of differing opinions on whether it is a distinct technique or not.

It is certainly a useful one.
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Old 05-30-2018, 04:20 AM
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Quote:
Originally Posted by highwaykind
Thanks for the info! Makes me slightly more hopeful that I can one day come close (because no way I can do this all in 1 go). Do you have a source for this? I'd love to see his underpaintings!
In the images below you can clearly see his underpainting in many places and also some overpainting. If you study high-res images of his finshed works, you can see this kind of underpainting there as well. Bouguereau left some of his underpainting visible, especially in the shadows and half-tones.

In the third image you can see how he used a lighter scumble over darker tone in his underpainting to create a cooler half-tone. He was very effective in using optical effects caused by the interplay of layers.





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Old 05-31-2018, 04:56 AM
highwaykind highwaykind is offline
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Thank you !!
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Old 05-31-2018, 01:31 PM
Mona95 Mona95 is offline
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

Thank you everyone so much for your replies. It helped me a lot.

I have been trying to copy one of Bouguereau's paintings and this is the result. The colors are a bit distorted due to lighting. It took me around 5 months to paint this. What improvements can I make?
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Old 06-02-2018, 10:28 PM
SeanInDublin SeanInDublin is offline
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Re: Need help painting flesh tones like William Adolphe Bouguereau

You seem to be doing well


I suspect the only way to master a technique is long years of practice.


Did you find this thread?



http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=501953


Best wishes
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