The era of Renaissance marked a new stage in the evolution of mankind. The changes that occurred in human conscience affected all spheres of life, from manufacture to art. Egg tempera that had been used as the primary painting medium before gave way to oil paints with their subtler colors, richer texture and amazing visual effects. The properties of oils allowed 15th century artists to introduce new painting techniques that you can observe in famous paintings by Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Rafael and Caravaggio. Here are the most widely known of them.
- The mystery of the Mona Lisa smile might have a technical explanation after all. Exemplified by the greatest creation of Leonardo da Vinci, this technique involved allowed the artist to achieve a very smooth blend of light and dark tones with no clear boundaries distinguishing their variations. That gave the painting a very soft, warm appearance with a higher degree of realism.
- Contrary to Sfumato, this technique involved creating very intense, pronounced contrasts between light and dark which made the painting more dramatic and plausible. The eye-striking variance of highlights and shadows added volume to the object making it look three-dimensional and therefore very lifelike. One of the first canvases featuring Chiaroscuro is Adoration of the Magi by Leonardo da Vinci. Other painters who widely used this technique were Caravaggio and Rembrandt.
- Basically, Tenebrism is very similar to Chiaroscuro, but the contrast between light and dark is enhanced to its maximum. Very often artists used only one source of light illuminating the object or the portrayed person and making them stand out against the dark, almost black background. With its scarce highlights and deep shadows, Tenebrism created a very solemn, sometimes even mysterious impression primarily associated with Caravaggio paintings.
Although these oil painting techniques appeared over five hundred years ago, they are still widely used by modern artists in their work. In the 20th and 21st century, Sfumato, Chiaroscuro and Tenebrism were reinterpreted in terms of contemporary art. You can see them on many modern canvases, including those by Leonid Afremov.
Vibrant and inspiring, his works seem to be a bright patchwork of colors woven together into familiar images of rainy cities, autumn parks and sea views. The artist’s online gallery hosts hundreds of impressionistic pictures created with a palette knife that he uses instead of a brush. Here you can find works of all genres, from traditional landscapes to contemporary cityscapes. In particular, Leonid Afremov is known for a series of celebrity portraits performed in his signature style. Fans of BB King, John Lennon, Eric Clapton, Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston will definitely appreciate these colorful canvases depicting their favorite musicians. If you any of the paintings catches your eye, you can easily buy it online at http://afremov.com/!