Under the Influence – of Matisse

For Inspiration, you never can go wrong with the Masters.

Anytime my classes need a bit of visual ‘help’  I always like to mention “Go To The Masters!”

They have decades of experience just waiting for us to learn from.


painting the nude, cobalt teal blue pg50, impressionist watercolor nude, figure after Matisse, creative life drawing, debiriley.com
After Matisse, in watercolors


Matisse Like Impressionist Nude


To be under the influence of one of The Masters means you’ve chosen for yourself a world famous teacher.

You’re in a classroom of pure excellence.



My reference material

Whilst in a life drawing class I’d made some rapid studies of the model for later use. These I redrew several times at home, looking for a suitable design.

I had the idea of using charcoal to accent watercolors as well as popping in CTB cobalt teal blue for a Splash of color.

Also…. the idea of being  influenced by the style and approach of Matisse, with his colorful nudes and curved figures.


I’ve titled this, “After Matisse”  even though I wasn’t actually looking at one of his works at the time.

I was remembering how Matisse works. His lines, colors, his feeling he puts into the painting.


I Deliberately – was being influenced by the Matisse style.



The Masters

There are many, many other great Masters to learn from.

To be influenced by. Rothko,  John Singer Sargent, Edward Seago,  Clarice Beckett,  JW Turner,  Monet, Pissarro, Corot, Seurat, Picasso…..


The Masters teach us, show us the relevance of conveying emotion in the painting.


While we learn, while we are being influenced, we also are gaining skills and confidence.

We’re learning the Masters’ secrets and then weaving them, into our own unique approach. As it should be!





  1. Lovely work, Debi! I’m very fond of Matisse! My main influences for now, as I wrestle with skin tones and such like are people like John Singer Sargent, Mary Cassatt and Anders Zorn (Skin tones from his oh so limited pallete, talk about major ‘aha’ moment!)

    Liked by 1 person

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