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In this work, we see a portrait of the famous Russian painter Ivan Nikolaevich Kramskoy. There are always many questions, as one artist allowed another artist to paint his portrait. But Repin and Kramskoy were linked by long friendships, so in this work we see, literally, a piece of Repin’s soul, his feelings for man.
The picture shows Kramskoy in a sitting pose. He is already a middle-aged man, looking about 40-50 years old. The skin on the hands is already aged, there is gray hair, and the beard is completely white. It seems as if the person being portrayed is not posing at home, where he could put on comfortable clothes and impressively sit on the couch. Before us is a man in a strict, fairly formal suit. He is wearing a dark, brown-black coat, or an elongated jacket. White cuffs peek out from under the coat. The trousers on the artist are also dark, almost black. Such meager colors when drawing clothes are fully compensated by the bright face of the posing.
The artist's face is very tense. He is focused, looking from the picture directly at us. His look is rather strict, perhaps displeased. Ilya Repin was not just a friend of Kramskoy. Initially, he considered him his teacher, a patron in art. Probably, for this reason, we see such a strict facial expression in Kramskoy.
The background of the canvas is the wall of the room. The artist skillfully performed a stretch of light from dark to light. It seems that in one part of the picture the background is grayish, in the other - turquoise. But a simple stretch would look unfinished at work, so the artist draws the background with sharp, sweeping strokes.
The picture is made in dark colors. The brightest spots at work are the white shirt and the face of Ivan Nikolaevich Kramskoy. Thus, Repin emphasizes the importance of emotions, the inner world of the portrayed. At the same time, it completely removes the emphasis from the environment.
Composition By Picture First Snow