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Exploring Classical Techniques through Portraiture as a Combination of Image and Object

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Name: Maya McDonald
Major: Studio Art
Advisor: Marina Mangubi

This collection of works, through the application of classical painting techniques, explores portraiture as a combination of image, object and environment. Many of the classical painting techniques used were inspired by those of Raphael, Vermeer, and Murillo who created great contrast between light and dark through several glazes of intense colors. With these intensions and concepts in mind, amore personal and emotional body of work was possible. Each painting focuses on one individual with the inclusion of unique attributes referencing their personalities and traits. This study creates a relationship between the figure and a physical manifestation of their unseen qualities. For example, the piece of my Uncle Eric features a Rubik’s cube to represent his ability to solve complex problems. In the three paintings of Milo, the birds, and the absence of a bird in the third piece, represent the ever changing world around him as well as his own growth through life. The paintings in this collection all include elements of symbolism that represents the individual similarly to the works of Eric and Milo. Each portrait is seen as more than just an image, more than just a reflection, more than just a remembrance, but a passageway coming from personal experiences with each of these individuals.

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Posted in Comments Enabled, Independent Study, Symposium 2022.


One response to “Exploring Classical Techniques through Portraiture as a Combination of Image and Object”

  1. Tracy Cosgriff says:

    A fabulous senior project, Maya! I love the way you’ve integrated the techniques of the early modern masters to animate your subjects visually and psychologically. Congratulations!