Figurative Paintings Mastercopies

Painting the soldier’s helmet – Week 6

Today was dedicated to painting the soldier’s helmet.

My initial plan for copying this painting by Caravaggio–just so you know–didn’t include the soldier. I had planned on painting the woman and Peter. But when I stood in front of the painting with a blank canvas, I decided to copy the entire painting.

What I didn’t realize at the time was the effort that I had to put into painting the helmet. Unlike other items in the painting, the helmet includes insane depth to it. I am convinced that the painting wouldn’t look complete–I am only referring to visually aspect of the painting here–without the helmet.

Close up image of the helmet

To develop the deep colors of the helmet, I had to work up to it using layers of paint, which I had built up over the course of several weeks. Caravaggio executed the details of helmet with the bare minimum essential brush strokes and colors.

After about 3 hours of continuous painting, I was satisfied with the outcome. Like it or not, I will have to move onto completing the painting after today’s session.

Figurative Paintings


So much has happened in the month of October. After 3 weeks, I have completed the following portrait of Vincenzo. Yay.

On the last day of the live pose, I decided to paint a small portrait and threw down whole lot of yellow ochre. The main image of this post was the final product.

Oil on Canvas, 30 inches x 20 inches
Figurative Paintings Mastercopies

The Met: Gallery 601 – Week 5

Today turned out to be hands and fabric day. I think it could have easily been a day to work on the soldier, but that will have to wait. 

I rushed to get to the Met, and I began painting shortly after 12 pm. To my surprise, I was able to get little closer to the painting than the other days, which was very nice.

Because there are so many visitors coming and going I have been setting up my Easel pretty far away from the original painting. It’s really hard to get at all the little details, but I decided that will paint what I can see. Besides, when really necessary, I can walk up to the painting and see what I need to see.

Mastercopy – The Denial of Saint Peter – This image was taken after session #5

Reworking the hands took some time because the positions of them are slightly different the original. I also made some modification to Peter’s cloth to compensate for all the little changes that I have introduced.

I also realized that the lights in the gallery 601 are changing constantly. I noticed this when the entire room lit up. While the change was shocking, I was able to see much better. Some colors will need to be adjusted once again…

Figurative Paintings Mastercopies

Mastercopy: Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio – Week 4

Today marks the 4 of 8 sessions of copying Caravaggio’s painting. It’s an important day because today is the day to prepare the painting for following 4 sessions. If any major change or decision needs to be made, today is the day.

Step 1 – I began the painting session by adding another layer of paint on the background, adding a good quantity of paint over the initial thin paint layer.

Step 2 – Position of all five hands were repositioned. This was one of the major decision that I had to make today. I liked the size of all the heads, but all five hands had to be adjusted very slightly so they all look good.

Step 3 – The majority of today’s session at the Metropolitan Museum of Art was spent on Peter’s head, and painting his wardrobe. I know I have to dedicate at least one session just on Peter, so this would be a preparation step for another day. I am hoping I would be able to get to him on week 7.

Cropped Image – Portrait of Saint Peter

Step 4 – The remaining time today was spent on the woman’s face, focusing on colors under shaded areas. I might be able to get at this by glazing, but I decided stick to the direct painting method for now. Some likeness from the original was lost today, but I ran out of time.

Cropped Image – Portrait of the woman

In conclusion, all major tasks for today was completed as planned.

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