Figure Start: Edges

I’ve noticed that edges are beginning to play a bigger role in my paintings.

I’m getting to a point where I dislike hard edges or sharp edges. I’m not sure if there is a difference. It seems to me that if you make all edges soft except for a few near or at the focus of your painting everything looks better. I guess because this is how we view the world. Nothing is ever in sharp focus all the time except what you are looking directly at.

In this figure start, I have hard edges all over the place and I think it is making the whole painting look flat. The difficult thing about this is trying to soften light objects against a dark background.

On the other hand, I don’t like overly soft paintings. Many artists today push the concept of edges to a point where it is obviously a fabrication. Of course, in some instances, it gives the subject a sort of glow but if not very carefully done it just looks contrived.

For my next figure start, I have to do two things. Pick a pose that is difficult and showing the face and head clearly. Then when I’m painting it try to keep all the edges soft.

Figure Start: Edges, setup

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