Turn On the Glittering Light of Impressionism
The Artist's Magazine - October, 1989
Match the Mixtures - Study the dress in the demonstration of Eleanor and see if you can locate all 11 colors shown beside the sketch. This will give you some idea of how colorfully Benson saw a subject and what great prismatic lengths he took to express his point of view. How easy it could have been to have simply mixed black, white and a touch of alizarin crimson, dismiss any thoughts of sophisticated color changes, and concentrate solely on rendering the tonal forms of the dress. Here you can also see his procedure of sketching the subject with a brush directly onto warm-toned canvas, then laying in swatches of opaque paint. He then indicated the large planes of color and worked in detail. Note how all color and tonal changes melt into a single, unified illusion of reality.