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Old Sunday 15th July 2007, 21:35   #1
dryslwyn
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Loose birds

Can anyone do a good job painting loose birds? Or do you think it is necessary to first study anatomy and feather detail etc before you can be successful? Take an extreme example - Lars Johnson sometimes paints in the most exquisit loose manner perfectly capturing the essence of the subject. Is this because he studied bird form as an illustrator when he was younger?
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Old Sunday 15th July 2007, 23:30   #2
timwootton
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dryslwyn View Post
Can anyone do a good job painting loose birds? Or do you think it is necessary to first study anatomy and feather detail etc before you can be successful? Take an extreme example - Lars Johnson sometimes paints in the most exquisit loose manner perfectly capturing the essence of the subject. Is this because he studied bird form as an illustrator when he was younger?
Hi Wendy - we've all seen the flying 'm's which pass for gulls of a type, but I'm never convinced about 'loose' birds, as you so eloquently describe them, unless they're really actually very well observed loose birds.
The point about Lars Jonsson is well made, but there really is only one Lars Jonsson, and he could probably do an exquisit painting with an old toothbrush.
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Old Monday 16th July 2007, 10:55   #3
Mouldy
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I think this is another one where everyone will have a different take on it, personally I've built up a knowledge of bird form from my years of watching, so know what looks right and what doesn't. To cliche, sometimes a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing, Lars Jonsson follows the philosophy of 'paint what you see not what you know', a good example being a painting of sleeping avocets where reflected light rendered part of their legs invisible to the eye so he didn't paint them in even though he knew they were there.
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Old Monday 16th July 2007, 14:08   #4
dryslwyn
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Yes I suppose it all boils down to observation no matter what the subject but some knowledge must help - especially in the field when a knowledge of say what a herons beak looks like would be useful when you make a start and then he's gone for the day! This is one reason I finish so little when I am out and I also find it so difficult to remember what I have just seen a few seconds ago. Not doing enough is probably the answer to that.
But as frustrating as it is its always fun
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