Thomas Gainsborough at Tate Britain

Edward Richerd Gardiner c.1760-8

Oil paint on canvas


I liked this painting because it was very detailed and seemed like an old piece. Many of old paintings are skilful. On the painting, the skin of the boy was like real, and the shadow was exquisite. His other works were mostly used pastels and looked like oil paintings. It was very impressive and made me want to draw with pastels.

In his oil portraints, Gainsborough's experience with pastel was arguably expressed in the 'hatching manner' and 'odd scratches and marks' which Reynolds designated as a 'novelty and peculiarity' of his rival's style. Gainsborough's experiments included his unusual application of colour. As here, his use of unmixed poaint, to be blended by the eye at the appropriate distance, echoes the recommended application of pastel pigments. Gainsborough's nephew is depicted in the same 'van Dyck' costume - then fashionable for portrait sitters - that the artist used for his painting of Janathan Buttall, Known as the 'Blue Boy' (Huntington Library, California). This may have been a colour trail for Buttall's portrait.

His works there fascinated me because they were so skilful and lovely colours. 

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