The epic tale of the University of Wisconsin LaCrosse Printmaking Program. The Printmaking program is directed by Joel Elgin and features the odd collection of the many PrintFools who enroll, print and exist from semester to semester in the Shop of Tears.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Lucien Freud - portraits

Lucien Freud - Bella (1987)
etching, edition of 50

Click the title post Litho and Intaglio Fools. We begin the Spring Renaissance
of Drawing with a trip to New York to learn from Lucien Freud. They don't get much better...

38 comments:

Keriann said...

Freud seems like an interesting guy. I am intrigued with how he uses both painting and printmaking to get acquainted with his subjects I like the idea of looking at the subject in a different way. When I am working on a plate compared to a watercolor/drawing I look at the subject in similar light, but somehow it is still different. I also love how he said "With etching there is an element of danger and mystery. You don't know how it's going to come out. What's black is white. What's left is right."

I found freuds images very gestural and full of expression. I really enjoyed his images of plants. There were only a few, but I enjoyed there use of space on the picture plane.

Sarahhigley said...

I really admire this artist. Looking at some of those portraits, I was amazed. One of my faults as an artist is that I cannot create an accurate image without a photo, and it amazes me how Freud can create such life like images while looking at a figure in person. I also like that he paints and etches people that he knows in places that he is familiar with. It really does make his work like a diary.

Allison Bauer said...

Hey Ogre! You didn't think I'd forget about the blog just because I am across the pond, did you? Well I just thought i'd stop in and say hi to everyone. I went to the BRitish mseum yesterday and saw some great prints that they have there. And in the Japan series I saw the original Big Wave print by Hokusai!

ellen said...

some very cool work, but not anything that i'm especially interested in. i liked his florals and plants the most, but am not such a huge fan of some of the portratis.

zoe said...

I really like the etching portraits, i like how realistically unpretty they are and how kind of raw they are.. just black and white and no lies.
I also really enjoy looking at these because I am always drawing faces... sometimes i get extemely frustrated because i can never think of anything else to draw but seeing these makes what i habitually do feel less dumb.

katelyn said...

Looking at these is inspiring and intimidating at the same time. I know I am going to be doing a lot of drawing in litho this semester, and that is not a safe area for me.

Josie said...

Wow. Since I'm just a baby with very little experience in printmaking this is intimidating. So far I'm pretty amazed about how printmaking works. Hopefully, I can attempt to do something somewhat awesome.
I'm not good at the human figure, but I like it and I like what has been done with these.

Kaitlynn said...

Well, this is pretty much a perfect example of something i'm working towards...i normally stick to black and white simple line work...but i'm trying to get that 'etching' feel now...with the cross hatching and whatnot. he has a lot of depth in his images...even with them being simple...that's what i need...depth...i loved his etchings of womyn...they are beautiful.

Jaime said...

I thought that it was interested that he was the grandson of Sigmund Freud since I am a psy major. The pictures were very interesting but some of the portraits looked better in the small version before I clicked on them because when they got larger they seem to be very messy looking. I was most impressed with the portraits that seemed the most realistic.

Nels said...

Well, where do you start, or end for that matter, with this guy? He is truly inspirational. I appreciate his willingness to show the more disturbing side of life, rather than merely the beautiful or comfortable. The use of plants in his early etchings contrast with the simple form of the plant against the complex emotions of the person. His use of line to create form and volume is well worth studying.

Even his later etchings did not slip into portraying the way we like to view ourselves, but always left that vague feeling that we always feel underneath what is going on in our daily lives. (Oops! Did I reveal too much about myself?)

Cara said...

I really like his paintings and his subjects, someone already said it, but they are so raw. His etchings are really inspiring...bring on the figure drawing!

Michelle said...

I really liked the prints by Freud. His style and honesty of the body and face reminds me of a painter named Alice Neel who I also admire. I also seem to be attracted to portraits because they are so closed in and detailed, yet very simple at the same time.

Amy Waala said...

I think one of my favorites was "Garden in Winter" though his portraits (and everything else) were very impressive. I appreciate his portrait style. Sometimes we get so stuck on forcing our work to look "pretty" but screw that!! I wanna draw what's real and raw and I'll have fun messing up while I'm at it.

ps. I agree with Kaitlynn. Crosshatching and such is an interest of mine. I think it always has been but I never got the hang of it.

Liv Radke said...

I agree with Jamie, I found it interesting that Lucien is Freud's grandson. I wonder what Freud would have said about Lucien's fascination with nudes and people. I bet it was some kind of pent up early childhood frustration. Interesting indeed. Aside from all of that, I loved his cross hatching and was amazed by how he was able to control darkness of his values by how closely he made his marks. Also the detail he put into the face just added the emotion of his work.

Lisa Ulik said...

http://www.geocities.com/pantherprousa/freud_slideshow/freud-slides.htm
Lucien mastered the human form. I am always intoxicated by his work. I think the technical differences between his prints and paintings is really interesting. Some of this nude paintings are so rich... luscious... heightens my senses to the point of making me slightly uncomfortable. ...that is what its all about. Hope the link above works and you are all well.

Anonymous said...

I really like is awkward subjects that aren't idealized. He really is fantastic in is drawing. The images are remarkable. I really like how he opens so much of the copper plate on the asphaltum.The lines that create dimension and style.

Allison Bayer said...

Freud is amazing in the sense that he can paint and etch in very similar styles. Though looking through his work, I like his more expressionist portraiture, the gestural lines suggest so much emotion and really contribute to the print.

Bec★ said...

hey M/W gang,

check out http://printfeverfotos.blogspot.com/2009/02/valentines-day-2009.html
for a class list so you can make valentine's day cards for next week <3

willison said...

i definitely like his second body of work more. i find his prints interesting, with a charcoal feel that i like.

willison said...

i definitely like his second body of work more. i find his prints interesting, with a charcoal feel that i like.

mao said...

Beautiful lines in these etching. I like how simple and yet complex the etchings are, he is an amazing drawer. Despite being somewhat disturbing as Nels said, I though the naked etching are impressive.

Wow...Valentine is just around the corner!

carly said...

Freud is weird, and i like weird. i wanna know why he left the art world for 34 years? i wonder what brought him back and if it had any influence on his etches. they are full of soft passion, i feel tension and satisfaction. beautiful lines.

Kaitlynn said...

i just wanted to share with everyone that i stabbed myself in the face with my needle. no blood...so no fainting....just a sweet little pin prick...good lord....

Jen said...

I really like Freud's prints, especially his portraits; they are so gestural (which I am attracted to.) His portraits inspire me to go out and draw the human figure.

Zach Morin said...

I'm pretty drawn to his black and white etchings. To me, they are incredibly reminiscent of black and white portrait photography. He utilizes the etchings in a way photography is used in that he's documenting his subjects, not simply "etching" them. I love the expression of his lines. Even though I've certainly seen portraits with more accuracy than his, it somehow doesn't matter. He's clearly isn't going for the finest detail. His use of gestural lines and organic forms is certainly inpsiring. With this, hes expunged all extrenuous information. Thus, through cross hatching and raw lines, he creates an intense emotion that compensates if not blows other portraits with more "accuracy" and "realism" out of the water.

Kirky B said...

I'm really interested in Freud's work. His portraits are really interesting and I particularity like how he uses both painting and printmaking to express his image artistically.

Erica said...

wow lucien's paintings and printmaking are very detailed and gestural. he transformed expressions so well on his pieces

Kirky B said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kirky B said...

Today I realized one of the major reasons I love the print shop and the people that live in it. Even without BPJ in class, those left in the studio continued to interact and push out prints. Whether it was simply to pass the time before a next class or because some have yet to leave intaglio behind, I'm not sure, but it makes me really excited to see what comes out of the shop this semester.

Amber said...

oh man, exciting stuff. can't wait to take his influence and see the pretty portraits of all of us! what a fun little project to get us into the semester of steeped in drawing.

britt luecke said...

i love Freud's work...it is really interesting and i love how he uses both painting and printmaking to portray his image. i also think its cool how his works are free and have a lot of expression!

Mark K said...

I really how he does his prints. It kind of reminds me of different impressionist paintings. I also thought it was interesting that he treats his plates more "like a canvas" and how he stands them up on an easel.

Mallory_Heesch said...

When I first started reading about Freud's etchings, I assumed he printed the plates once they were etched. I was really surprised to learn that he had them sent out for proofs! Not only that, but I find it fascinating that he "treated the plate like a canvas"-->setting it on an easle and slowly working on it over the course of a week. It's such a foreign concept to me to "work slow" in the shop, because once I get an idea and get excited about it, I want to fully etch the image on the copper ASAP.

Jillian said...

I might have problems because that website was driving me batty. I managed to look at some of his artwork though.

I like his unique way of approaching texture. It is different in his prints and his paintings, but still reflects his personal style. It was interesting to see how he studied different subjects through different mediums. I especially liked the portraits of Pluto, the dog. They have the same level of character and affection as his human subjects. Moreso that with a person, it really appears that he cared a lot about the dog. I think it is easier to depict humans in an emotional way without needing a real connection. It's a little harder to do so for furry ones.

Oh, and I noticed something completely irrelevant.

Caitlin said...

i like the emotion that is shown in his work. he's got a unique style that makes some of his portraits quite haunting.

Bethany said...

Freud's work is pretty cool, although some of the portraits are kinda creepy. The way he paints, prints and draws is very expressive. Can't wait to start this drawing extravaganza.

Erica said...

Lucien Freud is crazy awesome! His style varies so much and he uses a range of techniques from the more gestural and expressive to the realistic landscape. I think that he is an example of an accomplished rounded artist in the way that he can apply his artistic view to more than one style.

TonY said...

i'm amazed to see that this is very much like any pencil drawing.