Magical night in medieval Spain

If you ever travel through Spain do not forget to visit the Poblet Monastery, a Cistercian Monastery, founded in 1151, located at the feet of the Prades Mountains, in the comarca of Conca de Barbera, in Catalonia.

The Poblet Monastry, an hour before the concert in the courtyard.

The Poblet Monastery, an hour before the concert in the courtyard.

Jordi Savall & Hespèrion XXI,

Jordi Savall & Hespèrion XXI, Les Mil i Una Nits de Músiques.

Friends invited us for a concert by Jordi Savall and his orchestra. In the cool summer night we enjoyed the magic of this medieval music. It was the highlight of our short summer break.

Short impression of the concert.

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    Portrait in 6 steps

    I made a 6 step demonstration of one of my latest commissions.

    Have fun.

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      Off to England

      This weekend I was off to England and not much time was left to write on my blog.

      Portrait drawing

      The boy made me a fantastic portrait! I love it.

      I was out for a portrait commission of a family of two little children with their parents. Saturday and sunday I was the family´s guest. Without preconceived idea I arrived at their home. I knew the mother wanted an outdoor setting. Initially, it was raining so the plans seemed to fall through, but Sunday afternoon the sun came out. The last hour of my visit I had the opportunity to do a good outdoor session. My job for a commission especially with young children is to win the everyone´s trust as quick as possible. Also of those two most sweetest, and very lively children. During the sittings they will have to do what I say. Always that´s a big challenge. And the parents sometimes are stressed if everything will turn out successful. So I did my best to reassure everybody. The photo session turned out well, I have some lovely pictures of a lovely family. Soon I can start making the sketches.

      Fin Art Commissions

      In the gallery with Rosie.

      On my return trip I also paid a visit to Fine Art Commissions, my excellent gallery in London.

      Now back home and get to work!

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        The dull season?

        Not much news. I’m off to London this weekend for an extensive portrait commission. The assignment is via my gallery Fine Art Commissions in London. Monday I’m back and I’ll show you some pictures.

        London

        I will be careful, crossing the streets.

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          What painting medium and when?

          Although I use little medium it constitutes a very fundamental part of my painting.

          What medium do I use? I always get that question and I’ll explain. It’s important to know that my technique is based on the “allaprima” technique. ‘Allaprima’ means that the painting will be painted ‘wet-into-wet’. With this technique the colours are mixed not only on the palette but also on the painting itself, and the paint can continue to be thinned with the same solvent or medium, or the paint can be used pure. And remember I work in one-day parts so every part must be finished in one single day, before the paint is dry.

          Painting medium

          Painting medium on top of the dry underpainting. I apply the mixture with a brush and wipe it off with a cloth.

          ◊ Before I start, I rub the canvas with a medium. That can be a normal drying standard medium. Sometimes I use a mixture of 50% alquid medium + 50% stand oil, that gives a more oily appearance. Why do I start this way? I always say “the canvas is hungry and must be fed and satisfied.” In this way the linen sucks less, and the brush strokes are received more easy.  I don´t use it too thick, I apply the mixture with a brush and wipe it off with a cloth.

          ◊ When I start painting I use hardly any medium. My paint is of good composition. I mostly use Rembrandt/ Talens and for me it has the ideal ratio of pigment-oil. Some brands are stiffer and others more liquid.

          ◊ Once the canvas is covered with paint, and I want to continue adding details, I use the mixture of 50% alquid medium + 50% stand oil.

          See also this.

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