Friday, June 14, 2013

Beatrice Townsend at the National Gallery of Art

I am back at the National Gallery of Art painting Beatrice Townsend by John Singer Sargent.   This is the result of my first day's work.  I still have a lot to do but I am pleased with my progress so far.  I really haven't touched the face but everything else has been at least blocked in and some things shaded a bit.  I remember thinking I could not wait to get to that red sash...that beautiful red sash.  I grabbed a glob of alizarin crimson and stroked the canvas....AACK!!!  The sash is NOT alizarin crimson red.  It is much more terra cotta/orange red.  The lessons I learn when I *think* I know what I am doing!!!  So with the correct color mixed I painted the sash.  Happy happy me.  

I start out at home sketching the piece and getting a feel for where everything is.  It is all about relationships.  Once I was pretty comfortable with the sketch I headed to the gallery.

When at the National Gallery of art I set up my easel and began sketching on the canvas.  I brought a blank white canvas.  My first two tries were not successful...but undaunted I persevered and managed to get everything in the right place...or pretty close!

My loving husband of 39 years (our anniversary is the 15th!!!) stopped by to see how I was doing and took some actions shots!

I did get quite a few questions from visitors this time...a lot of people asking about the process of applying to become a copyist.  I always try to be helpful and pleasant.  As I packed up to leave a groups of teenage girls stopped by and asked if they could take a picture of me with my painting...there exact words were "you are awesome"!!!  So I left the gallery with a huge smile on my face that will take days to fade.  


  1. You ARE awesome! When do you go back?

  2. You really got a lot done on your first day with Sargent. I'm excited to see the finished piece, because YES you ARE awesome!!

    And happy anniversary a day early! Here's to 39 more!

  3. Excellent work, Maria!!! and of course, Happy Anniversary!!!

  4. Look at you go girl ....
    You are making it look easy. Can't wait to see it progress.
    Nice shot of your sketchbook too.
    Happy anniversary Maria.

  5. Love it! Awesome... from teenagers... quite a compliment! And even Bruce came by. How wonderful! I can't wait to see the finished product.

  6. You must feel Sargent's presence in the room as your private tutor. What a splendid experience.


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