Tag Archives: The Artist’s Daughter

The Artist’s Daughter – Classical Realism

"The Artist's Daughter" ©2012 Janice Tanton. Oil on linen panel. 14"x18"

“The Artist’s Daughter” ©2012 Janice Tanton. Oil on linen panel. 14″x18″

I’m pleased to present the finished work, “The Artist’s Daughter”. Featured in earlier posts, and the subject of a process video (see links below), this has been an important work for me – not only because my model and muse is my daughter Grace, but because it was my first concentrated effort in creating a figurative work in a classical style.

The Artist's Daughter: ©2012 Janice Tanton. Graphite on paper. 18x14.

The Artist’s Daughter: ©2012 Janice Tanton. Graphite on paper. 18×14.


This piece will be included as one from my private collection in the upcoming solo exhibition, “Ordinary Alchemy” at Bluerock Gallery, opening August 4th, 2012.  Stay tuned to this blog for further information and your exclusive invitation!

Here are the earlier posts for this work, featuring video progressions if you are interested in the process and development:

The Initial Sketch

Video – The Artist’s Daughter – DAY ONE

The Artist’s Daughter – DAY TWO

The Artist’s Daughter – DAY THREE



Third Session – The Artist’s Daughter

Work In Progress - The Artist's Daughter :: ©2012 Janice Tanton. Oil on linen panel. 18"x14"

Work In Progress - The Artist's Daughter :: ©2012 Janice Tanton. Oil on linen panel. 18"x14"

It’s been a few days…okay…weeks….. since I was able to work on this piece. Here’s where I’m at for the third session of this piece. I go hot and cold on it. There are parts right now that I just love, and parts that I really hate. Not having the best camera is also playing a bit of havoc with the reproduction quality here.

I’m looking forward to spending another day with it, working through some of the colour temperature on the shadows and highlights. Here, it looks a wee bit too orange and more saturated all over than the actual work is at this point. All in all, I’m not completely thrilled…but not discouraged either!

For those of you that missed the first two sessions, here’s the time-lapse video on the work in progress:

For information on the process, here are some earlier links on the blog:

The Artist’s Daughter – Day One

The Artist’s Daughter – Day Two

Holding Your Breath – Knowing When To Stop

The Toughest Art Critic


Holding My Breath…Learning When To Stop Working On A Painting

I have times when I feel like I should abandon a work because I can’t quite figure out what it needs next, or how to approach it….or if it’s even worth it. Sometimes I keep going and end up totally messing things up when really what I should be doing is getting some distance and perspective on the piece.

Over the weekend, I was pretty sick. That forced “rest” meant no visiting the studio to see how “bad” things were in my mind with this work…and no chance to make a mistake out of impatience or indecision.

Not only did my body benefit from the rest, so did my mental attitude towards the work and I felt a bit more confidence in my approach to the painting this morning.

After a day’s good rest in bed, I hobbled upstairs to find “The Artist’s Daughter” not quite as poorly as I thought it at the last pass. In a couple of short hours of painting, I was able to bring it to a point today where I’m pleased and can clearly see the next few steps to get to the vision in my head for this piece.

Here’s where I’m at today and now I’m taking another rest, having learned my lesson.

"The Artist's Daughter" Work in Progress. Day 3. ©2012 Janice Tanton. Oil on linen panel. 18"x14"

"The Artist's Daughter" Work in Progress. Day 3. ©2012 Janice Tanton. Oil on linen panel. 18"x14"

To have a look at the progressions to this point, visit these related posts:

The Toughest Critic

The Artist’s Daughter – Day 1 (Video)

The Artist’s Daughter – Day 2 (Video)

The Artist’s Daughter – Work In Progress, Day 2

I started this painting earlier in the week, and have continued to work through the underpainting according to some of the methods taught by Jacob Collins and his wonderful group of teachers and students at The Grand Central Academy. You can see the work done on Day One as well as the initial sketch.

The Artist's Daughter - Work in Progress, Day 2 by Janice Tanton
The Artist’s Daughter – Work in Progress, Day 2 by Janice Tanton 14″x18″ February 10, 2012.

Light and the Changing Seasons

I find it challenging later in the day to work in my studio when the sun streams in from a large south facing window. At some point in the day, I always get visually tired. This usually happens around 2:00 in the afternoon for me. I start early in my studio, around 5 am and sometimes before the sun rises.

In the winter, the light changes dramatically in a very short period of time and from November to the end of January, it’s tough to fit in some quality lighting time in the studio.

The summer…of course…has a huge timeframe for me to work in excellent natural light. You can see how much the light changes in the second leg of this video.

I’m interested in artistic process and would love you to share your thoughts on your own process here.


I’m working with a different palette than I would normally use to execute a portrait, as well as the different technique so this is very much a learning process for me.

I use M.Graham Walnut Oils. Love their pigment concentration and I’m not allergic to them, which is a huge bonus. I don’t need lots of crazy turpentines in the studio, and the workability of the paint is to die for.

The palette is one suggested by Scott Waddell in his video and as this is sort of my own self-directed learning workshop, I thought I’d go with what Scott uses in his demos. The only thing that I have added is a cobalt blue.

Here’s the palette:

  • Titanium White
  • Ivory Black
  • Cadmium Yellow
  • Yellow Ochre
  • Burnt Sienna
  • Raw Umber
  • Cadmium Red
  • Alizarin Crimson
  • Cadmium Orange
  • Cobalt Blue

I’m finding the palette a bit of a challenge, as I have never used Ivory Black or Burnt Sienna before, and have opted for a time-consuming glazing and over-glazing technique in the past vs. a more direct use of mixed paint in this technique. I’m beginning to see how this could speed my process a bit and how I might use the glazing to really augment the depth and feel of the work once I’m in the later stages. This will take a few days to dry now, so look for another progression post perhaps next week! Here’s the video for Day One and Day Two that has brought me to this point:

 The Artist’s Daughter – Day Two, Work in Progress by Janice Tanton

Related Posts:

The Artist’s Daughter – Work In Progress, Day 1

Earlier this month, I finished a sketch of my daughter Grace. My intent is to work through this painting in a method akin to the school of academic realists currently working in New York and around the world.  I’m a big fan of Jacob Collins and his contemporaries at The Grand Central Academy and I’d love to spend some time there with guys like Scott Waddell and Graydon Parrish.

In the meantime, while I contemplate the pipe dream of a summer studying in New York with these guys, I’m going to take a crack at working through this method and approach to classical painting.

With that in mind, here’s the start of the painting of “The Artist’s Daughter” that I worked on this afternoon. After finishing the sketch, I made a transfer outline onto a 14″x18″ belgian linen board that I hand finished myself. (More on how to do that in another post, methinks!) The board has been primed and sanded, and then received a coat of raw umber a couple of weeks ago just to tone the surface. I used raw umber to start this, and I’ll post more as I go along.

Here’s the initial sketch:

The Artist's Daughter: ©2012 Janice Tanton. Graphite on paper. 18x14.

The Artist's Daughter: ©2012 Janice Tanton. Graphite on paper. 18x14.

And here’s a quick one minute video I cobbled together this afternoon from some shots of the painting as I worked. I wanted to change the image slightly and tilt her head into the painting more. Nice to try something new! These are just the first stages of the painting. I thought it would be nice to share my process on this with you.

Please follow this blog for updates on the progression of works. Share your process with me. I’m interested in how you approach a painting or a work of art in any form.

Related Posts:

The Initial Sketch

The Artist’s Daughter – Work In Progress, Day 2

The Artist’s Daughter – Day 3 – Learning When to Stop Painting