The figure in Braids, by Andrew Wyeth (Sayre A World of Art, fig 342, pg.255) expresses a photographic sense. Although the artist used egg tempera on canvas, your eyes are tricked into believing that you are looking at a picture taken directly from a Polaroid camera. The slow drying process of the egg tempera allowed Wyeth to work meticulously on his painting. His detail in the painting is evident of the range and dimension you can achieve from using tempera paints. Wyeth’s skill with the tempera gives the women in the painting a relaxed posed look. I love how Wyeth painted the background black. It allows the viewer to revert all attention to the woman in the center. I can see the texture of her sweater, the aged look because of the wrinkles around her mouth and the light airy free flowing movement of her hair. The woman is so lifelike; I feel as though I have seen her someone before. The uses of Acrylic paints give the artist more range in color and provide longevity for their work. Judith Baca’s
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Acrylic paint, Paints, Andrew Wyeth, Tempera, Los Angeles area