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"Figures in acrylic" by Marcus Finch

There was an excellent turn out to see Marcus demonstrate, bolstered by 14 guests. This may be a record number for recent years.

Marcus introduced himself, providing a brief history of his career. Most recently he has been teaching in the West Sussex area. He then anounced that he was going to paint not one but two pictures in the two hours available.

Marcus urged us not to spend a lot of money on materials. Plastic lids as palettes and reasonable brushes from Seawhites were to be used for this demonstration.

He stressed that he would not be striving for photo-realism. Rather he would emulate the style of Jack Vettriano, whose work he admired. For his first painting Marcus created a dark vibrant background by applying the paint with circular motions of the brush. He then put this to one side to dry.

For the second painting Marcus used a reference photograph of a couple dancing the tango. He stressed the importance of placing the reference parralel to your work. He also demonstrated how to check that the rectangles of the reference and the work are of the same relative dimensions. He then took a great deal of time showing how to draw out the subject using angles, measurement and shapes to produce an accurate repesentation.

After the break Marchus painted over his pencil lines in red, creating a strong outline of the image. He then laid in the darks starting with a dark mix of french untramarine and burnt umber. He then overpainted this purple with gradually lighter mixes to achieve skin tones and other details. All the time he was careful to leave the red outline visible.

Finally Marcus added an imaginary background. By eliminating the white he hoped to make the highlights of the painting more pronounced. The finished painting was completed with rather less than 20 minutes of the available time remaining.

Marcus then returned to the background prepared at the beginning. Using a refence of two flamenco dancers, and no preparatory drawing he proceeded with another painting. White was applied with a square brush to capture the highlights. Mid tones were added in brown, and then the darks. Finally a bright red was used to capture the skirt in movement. In a little under 8 minutes the painting was completed.

Our thanks go to Marcus for a thoroughly entertaining and informative afternoon. A great way to finish our demonstration programme for 2018.

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