Artist Wayne Thiebaud Still Life

Wayne Thiebaud Still Life Painting of a man at a bakery

I was lucky enough to study under Wayne Theibaud when he spent a semester at the University of Minnesota. Thiebaud is an American painter whose most famous works are of cakes, pastries, toys and lipsticks. His last name is pronounced “Tee-bo.” He is associated with the Pop art movement because of his interest in objects of mass culture, however, his works, executed during the fifties and sixties, slightly predate the works of the classic pop artists. He did a wonderful shoe poster for Daytons in the 1980’s. Thiebaud uses heavy pigment and exaggerated colors to depict his subjects, and the well-defined shadows characteristic of advertisements are almost always included in his work. We use his “Cupcakes” painting from 1963 to learn about repeating images, shadows and color.

Materials: Heavyweight paper, sketching pencil and pastels or colored pencils.

Step #1: Draw guidelines down the middle and across the center of your paper. Use the center guideline as the back edge of the table. Draw three slightly curved lines evenly spaced across your paper as shown below. Add the sides of the cupcake.

Step #2: Draw the tops of the cupcakes and add the ribbing of the cupcake base.

Step #3: Draw the repeating shadows that connect the cupcakes.

Step #4: Decorate your cupcakes and add your own details. Have fun, be creative.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *