I learn a lot from copying the masters - it gives me an insight into what their processes might have been, it allows me to see color through their eyes and I almost always have one or two "Ah ha!" moments - and those moments make it very worth the time and effort.
This is a 16 x12 copy of the self portrait that Gauguin did to exchange with Van Gogh when they lived in the Yellow House and painted together in Arles for a short time. The use of color in this portrait is astounding . Here is a link where you can see the original http://www.artcyclopedia.com/Gauguin-LesMiserables.html.
I also recently copied Edgar Degas portrait of his brother in law Albert Melida. I did this one from a photo reproduction in a book - the original is in Paris, I believe in the Musee d'Orsey. The color in this portrait also fascinated me.
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