Portrait Artist Chris Saper takes First Merit Award in the Annual Portrait Society of America's "Members Only" Competition: Still Life Category

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Sunflowers, pears, and an antique white pitcher are the elements portrait painter Chris Saper employed to craft a visual melody that dances atop a golden ribbon

Golden Ribbon oil 12 x 24

Sometimes it is a challenge just to determine the composition of the still life elements before my flowers wilt!

Each year, the Portrait Society of America holds an online "Members Only" competition, where portraitists have the chance to compete not only for the genre or portrait art, but in still life and experimental arenas as well. Virtually every still life painter would agree that it can take much longer to set up a powerfully designed arrangement than it does to paint it - that no amount of skillful drawing, color or brushwork can rescue a poor design.
The arrangement of the pictorial elements and the way they are lit is entirely under the control of the still life painter, at least until the flowers droop or the fruit withers.

Artists working in every genre are challenged with the same compositional issues: conveying a focal point, and moving the viewer's eye to enjoy it.

Portrait artists, though have a special challenge - in most cases,' the portraits concept begins with a center of interest,and the artist arranges color, values, shapes or pictorial elements around it.

Over the past 22 years, Saper has delivered nearly 400 commissioned portraits to clients nationwide. She has authored several books, most recently "Classic Portrait Painting in Oils: Keys to Mastering Diverse Skin Tones", filmed 4 DVDs, and is an active speaker, instructor and demonstrator.

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