Luminous Portraits: Impastos and Glazes

With Master Artist

Gustavo Ramos

3 Days | Fri. Aug. 26 - Sun. 28, 2022 | 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Course Description

What is it that gives a masterful oil painting its jewel-like quality, mysterious luster and lasting freshness? The extensive properties of oil paint have enabled the creation of iconic portraits that prove difficult to decipher. In this 3-day workshop, Ramos will walk students through his award-winning portrait method from the ground up.

Working from the live model, the artist will demonstrate his unique way of dissecting visual information into a rich and dynamic likeness. Students will have hands-on experience with Ramos’ sensitive color palette and particular brush-handling to lay thick impastos and translucent shadows. One-on-one instruction will be given to internalize the principles of light, structure, shape design, tonal abstraction and broken color. Lively class discussions and rigorous focused time on the easel will equip the beginner or advanced student with a newfound arsenal to create luminous professional portraits in a way that only oil painting at its highest level can achieve.

What You'll Learn

Optimizing the qualities of opaque and translucent paint to enhance the illusion of space.

How to apply rich impastos while maintaining delicacy of color and form.

Interpreting the “broken color” of the flesh with a logical yet intuitive approach.

A mentality of building layers even when painting Alla Prima.

Dependable methods of checking proportions and capturing an accurate likeness.

In-depth critiques to help each artist meet individual goals.

Kline Academy Visiting Instructor Gustavo Ramos


Gustavo Ramos

GUSTAVO RAMOS (b. 1993) is a Brazilian-born artist who moved to Phoenix at the age of 15 and taught himself to communicate through careful observation and the language of painting. During his difficult adolescent years, when Ramos spoke little English, he relied on reading such non-verbal cues as facial expressions and body language. This experience would ultimately inform his future career as a realist portraitist. “Equipped with a heightened sensitivity to the subtleties of facial and other physical gesticulations because of that time in my life, I became motivated to depict the figure in pencil,” he explains. “Today, those formative years aid me in my practice as a way to explore emotion through oil paint and depict figures as agents in their own stories.”
The 26-year-old artist has made a career of painting people’s stories through portraiture that explores a range of emotions. Primarily self-taught, Ramos has relied on studying and copying Old Masters. A significant influence has been Rembrandt. “He created the sense of real people who had real experiences,” says Ramos. “I too hope to create works of timeless beauty and project authentic human experiences through my paintings.”
-Allison Malafronte, Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine, October 2020