Painting Almeida Júnior’s Saudade in Miniature Part I

The painting was first sketched out, then I chose to put the darkest wash in to establish a sense of value right away.

Saudade, according to Wikipedia, “is a deep emotional state of nostalgic or profound melancholic longing for an absent something or someone that one cares for and/or loves.” It’s recalling feelings or memories of people, places, and experiences once enjoyed and cherished, and remembering that those people or times are gone, causing us to be both happy and sad at the same time, thus giving a feeling of Saudade. I don’t know about you, but I certainly have experienced Saudade at times, longing for times past and family members and friends that are no longer here. Even just today, I expressed to Wes how I wish we could travel back in time and spend Memorial Day tomorrow, at my late grandparent’s house, swimming in their beautiful pool all afternoon long, and enjoy eating BBQ and homemade ice cream all together at their house that evening. If we stop to think about it, we probably experience Saudade quite often, especially in somewhat uncertain times such as those we’re currently living.

Next I carefully painted light color alongside pencil lines which I chose to erase afterward, making sure they don’t show in the final painting. Then I started painting other darker sections of the painting.

When recently commissioned to paint Almeida Junior’s Saudade“, I was thrilled to say the least! I immediately fell in love with the beautiful painting, the lighting, mood and atmosphere, and the story it tells the viewer. Without a single word spoken, the painting itself speaks volumes, making the story clear. I have painted several other miniature commissions after old master’s paintings, and have enjoyed every one of them. It’s a delightful challenge trying to match perfectly the colors and values used in the masterwork.

The lighter areas were painted in with the first washes, and other darker areas, such as her hair and folds in the fabric were painted. New progress will be shared on next week’s post.

Artist José Ferraz de Almeida Júnior was born in Brazil on May 8, 1850, and murdered at age 49 on November 13, 1899. Jose was commonly known as Almeida Júnior and was one of the first Brazilian artists to paint in the realistic tradition of artists Jean-François Millet and Gustave Courbet. He began his career as an artist and painted a few small religious works when he was a bell ringer at “Our Lady of Candelaria” church. While there, Junior had so impressed the head priest, that he held a fundraiser so Junior could take formal art lessons in Rio de Janeiro. Junior would go on to paint numerous paintings, including portraits of notable people, in his somewhat short life, even being Knighted in the Order of the Rose at one point. “Dia do Artista Plástico”, or “Artists Day” in Brazil, is even celebrated on his birthday May 8th, after he was hailed their “national painter”.

~  See our miniature paintings in person this week  ~

Brookgreen Gardens,                                                                                                           Murrells Inlet, SC  Extended through the end of May

~ Currently Online Only, or By Appointment ~

Making Their Mark: American Women Artists (ONLINE ONLY)
May 23 – August 23, 2020: Booth Western Art Museum, Cartersville, GA

The Art of the Miniature XVIII
May 3 – June 14, 2020: Snow Goose Gallery, Bethlehem, PA

29th Annual International Miniature Art Show
May 2 – 30, 2020: Seaside Art Gallery, Nags Head, NC

15th Masterpieces in Miniature (ONLINE: Public Draw Date May 28th).                   May 2 – 30, 2020: Picture This Gallery, Alberta, Canada 

Want to enjoy your own special miniature painting?

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Until Next Time . . . 

~ Rachelle


2 thoughts on “Painting Almeida Júnior’s Saudade in Miniature Part I

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