Portrait (Oils)

portrait life study in oils by irish artist john white

This was done extremely quickly, and even though it doesn’t flatter me in the slightest, it’s one of my favourites.

I’ve always liked self-portrait studies by great artists, such as Lucien Freud and Rembrandt—of course. Of Freud’s self-studies, the ones that I enjoy the most are his very rapid ones. This was painted in oils on textured oil/acrylic paper.

self portrait in oils
Above: Rapid self-portrait study. Oils on Oil/Acrylic Paper, 12″ x 18″

Life studies from the human figure are—in my view—absolutely the most challenging of all. And the most challenging part of that, for me, is getting those skin hues & tones balanced and right. That’s the real challenge.

The lesser challenge then, is rendering the forms, and then achieving a good composition. But in these types of studies, which are academic/learning exercises, composition is a lesser issue.

Artist: John White
Media: Oil paint, Canvas