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Old 01-30-2019, 11:55 AM
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AnthonyCL AnthonyCL is offline
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What was the underpainting for the Mona Lisa?

Does anyone know what Leonardo used for the Mona Lisa's underpainting?

A verdaccio, or a grisaille, or something else?

I'm going to try painting it to test out my abilities (and patience!)

Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-02-2019, 10:44 AM
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WFMartin WFMartin is offline
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Re: What was the underpainting for the Mona Lisa?

It is claimed that Leonardo carried the Mona Lisa around with him for years, working on it from time to time, and never having considered it to be finished.

I'm not sure even HE would have remembered the exact way he began his underpainting, but I wish you the best of luck in your quest for that information. Many of us would like to know that, I'm sure.

My guess: a rather Raw Umber sort of "rough-in".
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Old 02-04-2019, 02:03 PM
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KolinskyRed KolinskyRed is offline
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Re: What was the underpainting for the Mona Lisa?

Hi Anthony and Bill,

Here's an interesting article on reconstructing the Mona Lisa:


I think the meat of it starts at paragraph 19.

In short: Shadowed part ~ Umber, then halftones/lit parts of face Lead White/ Vermilion 100:1 mixing ratio.


Last edited by KolinskyRed : 02-04-2019 at 02:53 PM.
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