Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Adventures of copying Lady with a Parasol by Claude Monet - National Gallery of Art

When I select a painting to copy at the National Gallery of Art I always try to stretch myself.  I began this piece by Monet because I love it AND because the palette is so far out of my comfort zone.  Monet is said to have disliked browns!!!  I LOVE browns, ochres, umbers and all earth tones.  As I did my research about this piece I shuddered when I laid out this palette of colors.  They are:  Lead White, Cadmium yellow light, Cadmium Yellow, Viridian Green, Emerald Green, French Ultramarine, Cobalt Blue, Alizarin Crimson, Vermillion and Ivory Black.  I decided to only use those colors for this piece.  So, along with the challenge of copying this piece I am also mixing colors I am not too familiar with using colors I am not used to using.  It has given me the impetus to revisit making my own color charts as Richard Schmid suggests in his book "Alla Prima II"  Making color charts has been on my "to do" list for some time and this exercise has opened my eyes to the value of that task.  


Here is a picture of my painting and the original in the background.  As usual there was quite a bit of traffic through the gallery.  Many, many kind comments and well wishes from many, many different countries in many, many different languages.  One of the things I like best about living in the area is the diversity.  


  1. This is coming along beautifully, Maria. I can't wait to see the next post... love it!!!

  2. Maria, as always I'm completely enthused over your latest copy project! I love this choice, it will be such fun to watch it's progress. The sister to this painting, "Woman With a Parasol" with the model, Monet's stepdaughter Germaine Hoschede' facing the other direction, is on the cover of one of my first art books, "The Lost World of the Impressionists". There's a b&w, grainy photo of both of the parasol paintings hanging side by side in his dressing room. It's so great that you can stand before it now,every day during this project. The National Gallery has to be a wondrous place!

  3. I so agree with Scott - I love this painting and will love "watching" you paint it!


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