Wednesday, April 26, 2017


--Greg Manchess

This is a quick portrait study of one of the characters from my novel, Above The Timberline.

I suppose this old bear, Grim, has been with me for most of my painting life. It showed up in art school when I found that painting the yellow-white fur of polar bears offered me great insight into painting with white pigment. In different types of light and in different temperatures, white can become the most fascinating of colors.

So perhaps the discovery of the subtle use of white became characterized in something animated that lived in all forms of light. An anthropomorphized color. This time, in a polar bear.

The bears of my story, though, do not talk and certainly do not wear armor. They are dangerous and wild, and yet, a little more than one would expect.

Painting this little portrait was an exercise in capturing character with quick pigment.


  1. Beautiful as always, Greg. It's great to see how your brush goes through every degree of the clock, as you recreate the light bouncing on the form.

  2. The right couple of brushstrokes and you've created a distinctive character. I can read all sorts of suggestions into that scar. An old brawler, comes out on top though he can be blind-sided, he even has some affinity with the artist's eye. Squinting to judge values, one-eyed to check proportions.

    Makes me wonder about a black character whose fur or skin also reflects temp and light distinctively. Dang, you could probably go all Hendrix and do the whole color wheel as characters for some kind of visual story...

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  4. captivating. Love the picture and interesting post. Keep up posted with more good stuff friend. Much appreciation.


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