Saturday, January 05, 2008

Thumbnail Sketches

If any one is seriously interested in Art History then, to my mind, a really important skill to master is that of creating "thumbnail" sketches. This doesn't mean that it is not important to get good quality images wherever possible. There are many sources available online. (One excellent one is Olga's Gallery. For a full colour version of William Turner's, "Rain, Steam and Speed - The Great Western Railway", see However, a thumbnail sketch is not merely a reminder of the painting, it also helps you to analyse it and understand its composition. For it to be successful, you have to think about what you are doing, about what it is really important to show, yet it is also fast to do!

In order to improve your understanding of a piece of art work, it can also be useful to make a large, detailed study of it (as in my study of the horse cave painting). But sometimes this is unnecessary, even a waste of time, when (in some cases) a much simpler thumbnail sketch would give you all the insight you need and would get across whatever point that you wish to make!

1 comment:

Lena said...

Greetings Thomas!Thank you very much!It is very pleasant to speak with the cultural person. I have very much understood your refined praise! To me it is very pleasant! I see , that the theory of color is interesting to you. It too is very interesting to me. and to my friend too. We spoke today about it.Good bye!! Elena.