cubistic nude pastel drawing

Romy Schneider (2013)

Actress and Celebrity

A cubistic prestudy for an oil painting, depicting moviestar and celebrity Romy Schneider. Shorty after her Sissi days she turned into a great actress who could take on every dramatic role she was offered. The fact that she would play in mainly European movies, keeping her away from Hollywood blockbuster roles, adds her to my favorites.

New Kind of Paper

At Goedman Art Supplies I discovered a kind of pastel paper new to me: velours paper. It eats up a lot of pigment but I could lay strokes like nothing before. They looked like oil paint brush strokes. It was fun for a while until I came to struggle with fixation. Al those pigments loosely captured by fibres needed heavy fixation as well and regular fixative for dry pastel just did not do. I turned to a heavy use of acrylic spray varnish and it seemed to work, only to discover years later colors were subject to a process of yellowing and became faint. That was before the magic fixative HC10 by Sennelier was invented and entered the market. I didnot use the velours paper anymore though.

Cubistic prestudy

I found several nude pictures of Romy Schneider and I found this one to be great. Still don’t know whether it is her on this reference picture but she looks like her. In the beginning of 2013 I still was discovering cubism and this drawing was a continuation of a drawing such as ‘Cubistic Nude 02 (prestudy) (2013)’. I also did a portrait of her in my Sans Titre series: Sans Titre – 06-05-14.

I kept her face recognizable whereas I abstracted her chest and abs. The idea was to abstract things into bigger plains the more away from her face but for some reason it did not work with regards to the folds in the blankets. They looked ice floes initially. The color scheme also is abstract: only variations of red, green and blue. Also a bit purple. I included the word ‘prestudy’ in the title but at the time of (re)writing this story in 2020 I have no intentions to make another one yet. Still like this piece though.


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Pastel drawing on Hahnemühle velours paper (50 x 70 x 0.1 cm)

Artist: Corné Akkers