Sunday, April 5, 2009

Roses and Apples
18 x 16 Oil on Linen

I met someone at a party and introduced myself as an artist. "Oh I would love to have your life" he said, "just wake up each morning and paint exactly what I see in front of me." We were standing near a kitchen counter with a toaster oven, a small vase with a flower and a napkin holder on it. "Well" I replied "if you paint exactly what you see you'll be painting a mask of what is there." He looked confused. "You are only seeing the front of everything" I continued. "To paint a convincing illusion of what you are seeing you need to also paint what you cannot see. You must be able to convince the viewer that the vase not only has the front that can see but also a back side that you cannot see, and that there is space between the vase and the wall. You can't see weight and yet the flower must look lighter than the toaster oven. Then of course you have to think about what it is that you want to express." "Oh" he said deflatedly "that's a lot harder than I thought it would be, but at least you get to do what you want and then sell it for a lot of money." "Oh yes" I said not wanting to deflate him again "Rubens did quite well for himself." I didn't mention that Van Gogh only sold one painting, or that Rembrandt had to sell everything that he had, or that Hals died in the poorhouse.....

4 comments:

Walter Lynn Mosley said...

Very lovely painting!!

Eulalia (Lali) said...

Gorgeous glass vase...nice textural contrasts.

Dale Sherman Blodget said...

I recognize that cloth. Beautiful painting, Tom. Loved the story of the shoulda-been-an-artist, too. But you're usually more positive! I recommend Omega 3etc. And call that guy to sign up for your summer workshop. :)

Dale Sherman Blodget said...

Tom, I'm giving you the Passion for Painting Blog Award. It may take too much time, but the procedure is to pass it on to 5-7 others and then list 7 things that you love.