Part of the process of learning to paint is to look at the masters and how they went about their craft. In conversation with my mentor Jack Stephenson, we often say “What would Sargent do?” The answer is always there, if you look closely. Though its one thing understanding how they did it and another achieving anything to the levels they did.
I feel that I have progressed as a painter by doing transcriptions. I find it incredibly focusing in looking at a painting. To stop and really look at a great painting, look at the tone, composition and even economy of brush stroke. Historically the galleries of old were full of students of the arts reproducing as part of their learning process. Partly down to the lack of large format colour books and the internet back in the day.
People use the word “copying” about this part of my folio. Thats fine I see it as learning and will be a better painter for it.