Which was a bit silly when it dawned on me that this was filmed last summer and no amount of positive thoughts from me would have made any difference to the result!
However to my mind 'attitude' made a big difference to the result last night.
"Being in the Final, what it says to me is you shouldn't be so negative about your possibilities" David White
|The Final Judgement|
We also saw four artists who had genuinely been - in those cliché words much beloved of TV people - "on a journey".
If you've missed my earlier blog posts about this series (and the last series) you can find them at the bottom of this post - along with links to the websites of all the participants in the series (including the Judges and Mentors - unmissable!).
Now for the final!
The Penultimate ChallengeThe location was the Queen's House in Greenwich - which is a magnificent building and a beautiful setting for this challenge.
|Hearing that the Penultimate Challenge is a Portrait|
The presenters indicated that
- The final episode would contain two very different challenges which would show how far they had progressed during the series. (Let's not forget that the different aim of this series was a much more educational slant to the programmes and continuous mentoring throughout up until this point.)
- The ultimate aim was to identify the Finest Amateur Artist of 2017. (I'm guessing this is because Sky has already nabbed the Artist of the Year title - and this BBC series wants to emphasise its relationship with amateur artists across the country).
So the first challenge was to be a portrait - but they were not told who was going to be the subject. So much speculation with the favourite being that they were going to paint their mentors.
They had tips from the mentors
"Think about your strengths that you've got remember to keep looking, keep observing. Think about composition, could be the face, could be the whole thing, think about the background, think about colours. You're going to be on your own. Just have my voice in your head saying 'Do that, do that!'." Diana Ali
"If we can get this triangle right between the bottom of the nose and the centre of both the eyes, no matter whether it's square on face or three-quarter view, if you get that right you can kind of do anything you want with the painting. You;re going to do the best painting you've done so far - I'm 100% sure." PascalThis challenge was WAY BETTER than the penultimate challenge from last year's series which was completely unrealistic in terms of subject matter and how people respond to it. You can't make people paint subjects that don't mean anything to them - especially when the subject is the Royal Naval College!
This year, the penultimate challenge of evoking an emotional response for a painting was so much simpler when the artists were given the chance to "paint a parent"! (Well done to the parents for agreeing to sit and be painted!)
The challenge was to paint a portrait in 3.5 hours AND:
- to showcase all they have learned
- to paint a portrait which demonstrates the character of the sitter
In fact, the presenters kept commenting on how much more relaxed the session was! Nobody was stressing out in a corner........
The episode also enabled the programme-makers to give a potted summary of "the progress the artists have made so far". They're particularly interesting on reflection because in a lot of ways they're not untypical of very many other amateur artists out there who have similar issues re. skills and areas they need to improve
The summaries went something like this....