Life drawing. On Melancholia.

On Melancholia.
Acrylic, pencil and oil paint on prepared paper. 91 x 72cm. November – January 2021.

Another painting that took a long time, with a fair bit of thought involved. Again, the work was halted and not particularly ‘finished’. It started out from a great thirty minute pose, which immediately made me think of the Albrecht Dürer etching called Melancholia. It’s a riff on this work, rather than a copy.
I’m still not sure about the nudity, which is strange for me. She was very nearly clothed but it might have looked contrived. Nudes were used as symbols in the past, though I don’t want the painting to be too ‘sexy’, At least she is covering herself a bit with knowledge, even if the book is closed.
There is obviously a lot of colour and object echoing. Some fun balancing of objects in the pictures composition. An odd, dislocated atmosphere pervades. As near as I have got to Giorgio de Chirico. Books are becoming a theme as is a bright colour against coloured greys. Working the skin over in oil paint really helps bring the painting to life.
Looking at it now, the shadows still need some work…

Details of the work. The head has a little bit of a photograph of Mary from Michelangelo Buonarroti’s Pietà. I’ve been using black and white photographs in a big old art book of his sculpture as reference for a while now, when my drawing hasn’t enough information in it for me to work from.

The first life study, the other paintings on the night. A space of sketches. The painting without frame. The fantastical Albrecht Dürer etching and another sketch by a renaissance artist.

About Trevor Mill

This is my work. Art & Design. The fruits of my labour. Commissions / projects welcome.
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