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Roger Burnett Art Blog

Capturing colour

by rogerburnett , April 21, 2014—12:00 AM

Topics: Caribbean, Passion Love, life, maquette, models, mythology, nude, painting, poetry, sculpture

As a painter I have spent a lifetime trying to capture colour. In particular, I have endeavored to define the colours that are to be found in the skin tones of my models.

My struggles with paint are equaled with my struggles in verse. If you dip back into the archives of my diary pages to August 11th 2011, you will find my poem "The Colour Black". I wrote the poem in homage to Denise, my wife and model. It contains the verse:

From the dark areola of her breast,

Brown madder and yellow ochre merge.

While sienna reds and blues subdued

In deep purple shadows converge.

More recently, a poem dedicated to Jessica, my current model, begins:

In mellow tones my muse awakes,

With subtle shades of amber glow...

As a sculptor, I have tried patinating bronze to suggest the rich skin tones of my models but with limited success. The sheen of the clay comes closer. Sculptors from earlier times, referring to work in progress, had a saying that: clay is the life, plaster the death and bronze the resurrection.

I confess to a liking for the white purity of the plaster cast but alas, it cannot portray the "dark areola" or the "amber glow". Or can it? By applying experimental washes to the cast, just as I apply washes to a sheet of virgin watercolour paper, I cry EURIKA!

Today's picture shows the result.



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