By Elizabeth Ripley

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They were fascinated by the ladies in high, powdered wigs and pointed shoes who stepped from their carriages every afternoon. Never before had they seen so many Tom had to their beautiful, well-dressed ladies. to paint more quickly now. Using broader brush he captured the effect of shimmering silk and rippling lace. Only the face and hands were smoothly finished. Thicknesse took credit for his friend's success. In exchange for favors, he asked Tom to paint his portrait. "The first sitting ... is all that has ever been," wrote Thicknesse some time later.

A portrait with a Tom knew his favorite in Scotland dog was most that his realistic por- did not appeal to those who admired Sir Joshua Reynolds' formal style. Reynolds, five years older than Tom, was painter to King George and president of the Royal Academy in Lontraits don. His courtly manner attracted clients, and his portraits of well-known people wearing Greek and Roman costumes appealed to many sitters. Tom knew he could never imitate Reynolds' polished manner, nor did he want to paint glorified portraits of his sitters.

49%"x58 COLLECTION GEORGE HOWARD Castle Howard, York Tom couldn't stop talking about the "EIDOPHUSIKON" invented by Garrick's stage designer, Philippe Jacques de Loutherbourg. This clever Frenchman had painted scenes on and lighted them by candles from behind. Every evening Tom hurried over to see the moving pictures. To the accompaniment of a tinkling harpsichord, shimmering moonlight played on water, flickering firelight shone from a cottage door, and then in loud burst of music a thunderstorm burst over the Bay of Naples.

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Gainsborough - A Biography by Elizabeth Ripley


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