This small study of a skull was an attempt to work in a somewhat looser manner than I'd adopted in some of my other cast paintings. I wanted to focus more on edge control, bringing the subject out from the background. Rather than getting sucked into the detail, I tried to keep the handling broad, working with large brushes. I attempted to develop a sense of atmosphere and space.
I am fairly happy with the results, particularly some of the more intricate areas, such as the orbital cavities and the teeth, which could have become overworked to the detriment of the overall impression. The painting could have been improved by focusing on a greater luminosity in the lighter passages, but for a study I'm satisfied with it.
The 'skull' itself, is a synthetic reproduction which I purchased cheaply online from a medical supplies store. The idea was to provide me with a break from painting from casts and, at the same time, give an opportunity to study the anatomy of the human head.
Ben Laughton Smith
Aspiring artist, training in the classical tradition.