Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Painting Obama

-By Greg Manchess

A painting demo should do a few things at once. It should be informative, it should drive toward a finish, and it should be lively without trying to entertain.

That said, I end up feeling that we’ve come through it together and that’s kind of entertaining.

Entertainment is not the order of business though. I enjoy giving the viewer inside information about my personal approach as it usually breaks down into general painting concepts that most anyone can use. When that happens, the questions get better because they get more global.

All the specific questions are easy and quick to answer, such as what size brushes do I use, what’s my palette like, and what kind of paint do I work with. But as we go along, the questions fall more into emotional and philosophic queries.

And that gets fun.

Recent demo for my SmArtSchool class of Richard Schiff as Toby, from West Wing

This Saturday, I’m doing a live painting demonstration right here on Muddy Colors. I’ll start with projecting my reference onto the canvas and you’ll see how I sketch the image to be painted. Then I’ll seal the drawing and begin painting.

My subject will be President Barack Obama. Yes, Barack Obama will be sitting in my studio while fourteen choppers hover outside and Secret Service agents surround the building.

Er, uh, no. I lied. But wouldn’t that be sweet? I know, right?!

John Lennon, from a Boskone demo

I have adored watching The First Family these past eight years, and I thought this demonstration painting would be a fitting farewell to a historic presidency.

If you can stop by at 3pm EST, Dan, our contributors, and I would love to get a chance to have you there, and take some questions. Or compliments.

I’m counting on the compliments.

That’s if no cats jump on my painting or something else goes awry.

Just sayin’.

If you're a Patreon supporter of ours, we hope to see you there!
If you're not a supporter yet, but want to check out the demo, a donation of $5 or more will get you access to the event. Just click here:

New admissions will be cut off at 2pm EST the day of the event.
All Patrons will receive a link shortly before the event.

David Bowie, from another SmArtSchool class


  1. Will this be recorded to watch later in case people cannot make it live? I will try my best to be here live. Beautiful portraits, as always, Mr. Manchess. Can. Not. Wait.

    1. Yes, it will be recorded. The download will be available to all $10 patrons (or higher) about a week after the event.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Philip...his name is David Grove. Brilliant painter. I knew him quite well.

  4. Amazing painting of Richard Schiff as one of my favourite characters in my favourite show =D
    Also i'm really looking forward to the demo!


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