Marvin Mattelson lays down his palette and uses his words

Take a Look at Yourself

January 14, 2014
Self Portrait by Renee Finkelstein

Are you the portrait artist you aspire to be?

Bo Diddley sang: Before you accuse me, take a look at yourself. I think this applies perfectly with regards to our goal of achieving artistic fulfillment. Everyone has very real and legitimate excuses. The truth is, in life, you can either have reasons or results! So before you accuse your circumstances, take a good look at yourself.

I get a lot of inquiries from people asking for advice and hints about how to paint better portraits, often stating that painting is the most important thing in their lives. They ask me, "What colors do you use; what mediums do you mix in with your paints; is there a book you can recommend?" It's obvious they're hoping to find a spark or a breadcrumb that will magically convert them into the portrait artist they see in their minds eye.

Detail of Self Portrait by Renee Finkelstein

I recently received an email, from my student Renee Finkelstein. In it was an image of her latest painting, the beautiful self portrait I've posted here.

Renee signed up for my continuing education course, Realistic Figure and Portrait Painting at The School of Visual Arts a year ago. She followed up that class by attending my annual SVA summer workshop. You may recall that I documented her incredible progress in a blog post entitled You Can Get There From Here.

Before taking Marvin's classes, I was looking at a journey of several years to develop myself as an artist. Several years, that is, if I had unlimited funds, time and patience to research approaches and palettes to see what worked through a great ordeal of trial and error. Taking Marvin's class allowed me to skip that whole process. He generously offers students the bounty of his years of hard work and research, shows you all that he has found, and allows you to take it from there. Marvin once believed he would never be able to paint for his life. Having come so far, he truly believes that anyone can do it. That is what makes an exceptional teacher. There are other classes that are cheaper, but if you actually want to learn how to paint a portrait, take Marvin Mattelson's class. - Renee Finkelstein

Marvin Mattelson is now conducting his classes and workshops online in Full HD 1080p through his Fine Art Portrait Academy. For further information, or to register for an upcoming offering, please follow this link to his teaching page.

Until next time…

Previous Wordpress blog Comments

Phillip Singer says

January 14, 2014

I needed a little inspiration this morning. Thanks for sharing this beautiful portrait.

Zuzanna says

January 14, 2014

Thiis is fantastic, thanks for sharing Marvin!

Pat Joyce says

January 20, 2014

Zuzanna’s growth is amazing but studying with you, Marvin, produces immense growth for every student at every level. ZUZANNA IS EXCEPTIONAL FOR SURE!

Marvin Mattelson says

January 20, 2014

Renee’s progress.

Patty Joyce says

February 1, 2014

Oops, Renee, I deeply apologize . I hope you see this post because your painting IS amazing! I am going to blame this on the flu I had when I posted!!

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