Saturday, January 1, 2011

NORA KASTEN Artist oil Painting "Louise Toresco"

"Louise Toresco"
© Nora Kasten
Oil painting on gallery wrapped canvas  (24"x24"x 2")  Signed 1/1/2011

"My dear  . . . and GOOD friend, Louise, gave me two days of her time and energy so I could paint her portrait from life as I had asked.  She is a beautiful lady and never complained once about posing under the hot light.  After the first day's painting after Louise left the studio I did a Sargent and scraped down the whole canvas (20"x16"), leaving a ghost image of the day's work.

The second day, yesterday, New Year's Eve, when Louise arrive I was so enthused and excited about finishing her portrait sketch.  Something told me to take a photo of her in her position without the overhead light on before getting started.  Well, two hours later I had to bite my tongue, send my ego to the back of the room and tell my good friend that I had failed.  Oh, my how I hated to declare that  but Louise being the gracious lady that she is said "oh that's ok, Nora, but I'm afraid it's because of me".  All you artists out there can chuckle about that because we all know that the problem, fault or whatever is NORA and not the beautiful sitter.

I sent Louise home to get ready for her New Year's Eve date, ate a tuna salad sandwich, took a nap and then remembered the photo in the camera.  After printing I tacked the photo up on my easel and began painting.  Louise is smiling in my photo but she sure isn't in my painting.  I could get discouraged but am refusing to do that.  Tomorrow is another day and I'm still invited to Louise's house for dinner this evening.  Am I fortunate or what?"

Below is the sketch of Louise at the point where I stopped and admitted defeat.


Susan Roux said...

Such an ambitious undertaking after being away from your paints for so long! I think you did quite well and you're being awfully hard on yourself.

You go girl!

billspaintingmn said...

Happy New Years Nora! I can feel the energy in the painting! I can relate to the agony of the story!
I can regognize the beauty of your post!

Gilberto said...

And so she is going from good to better!. I like very much the impressionistic presence of that work, ease to figure the personality you so well mention in your post , the look of that model and the general temperament of the paint makes this happening a perfect first step for the year to come.

Kathy Cousart said...

I think you did a beautiful job and that you are too hard on yourself. She looks very sweet and patient:)

shirley fachilla said...

The shadows are so full of beautiful color. A lovely painting.
Perhaps you learned things while painting from life that then infused and enhanced your second attempt.

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