John Fernandes and the art of figurative painting 

See the painting video of master artist John Fernandes do a figurative painting demo in less than one hour flat. John Fernandes was an accomplished artist, a true master painter and a legend. More than 10 years after he is gone, the legend lives on. In this painting demo, John has created a figurative painting of a model who is a young girl in a sitting posture. Indiaart Gallery had invited John Fernandes to do this live painting demonstration for a keen and eager audience who thronged the venue to get a glimpse of this magician painter at work.

Painting video by John Fernandes

John with the completed painting after the painting demonstration presented by Indiaart Gallery
Huge crowd watches the painting session presented by Indiaart Gallery


A graduate from Karnataka University with Psychology and philosophy as major subjects. Studied Art (Drawing and Painting) at ‘Chitra Mandir’, Belgaum for 9 years under the guidance of eminent artist and teacher Shri. K. B. Kulkarni. Worked in Mumbai as an illustrator with a leading Advertising Agency for 9 years. Worked as a full time freelance artist for more than 25 years. His journey as an artist started from a small town in Belgaum, Karnataka when he was brought to Shri. K. B. Kulkarni’s art classes by his elder brother. John’s inborn talent made him a quick student, needing only subtle suggestions from his teacher.

Paintings by John Fernandes

Basket with apples, still life painting by master painter John Fernandes

John has painted figures, landscapes, still life and anything that he found interesting in all mediums – watercolours, oils, pastels, acrylics… John Fernandes had several solo and group shows to his credit. Many rate John to be one of the finest realistic painters in India.

Reflection, Oil on Board , 15 x 19 inches

His grasp of line, form and colour tones was something exceptional. He learnt drawing from nature, from memory and from live models, using the medium of pencils, charcoal, crayons, water colours and oils with equal ease. John’s paintings encapsulate with great skill, the sensual female form, rendered with a rare delicacy and sensitivity. His figurative paintings leave one enthralled by the provocative and yet sensually innocent look of his women.

In my world, painting by John Fernandes, Watercolour on Paper , 31 x 20 inches


Twins, Painting by John Fernandes, Oil Pastel , 27 x 21 inches

Besides figurative studies he also paints landscapes and still life with equal compositional and total skill. John’s confidence is such, that he does not use line to define form. He paints masses and forms emerge very interestingly.

Chapel Wall, Painting by John Fernandes, Watercolour on Paper, 10 x 14 inches

Pencil drawings are his forte, a love which he said – “He has inherited from his Sir K. B. Kulkarni”. Be it water colours or oils, John’s disciplined and confident handling of his subjects, leave a definite stamp, which says, “This is John!”

Reclining, Pencil on Paper, 15 x 24 inches

See John’s paintings

John Fernandes invests art with an honest eye and raises the mind through the painted image, creating “timeless – art”, that is a joy to behold.

Painting videos of other artists

Portrait painting demo by Vasudeo Kamath : Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

Portrait painting demo by Suhas Bahulkar : Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

Watercolour painting demo by Chitra Vaidya : Part 1 | Part 2

Blog posts on artists

Anuradha Kabra

Ambika Wahi

Chitra Vaidya

Manisha Patil

Prakash Bal Joshi