Thursday, December 06, 2007
Daily Painting Practice - Fruit Bowl
I love the work of (Vermeer), in particular I enjoy the small delicate detail and the sense of quiet he creates, and his compositions are so well thought out. But there is one thing that has always bothered me about his historical record. The the lack of sketches or preliminary work or even unfinished pieces. Didn't this guy practice?...The answer is, of course he did, but I have never seen any sketches or unfinished work or preliminary paintings that shows how hard he worked at it. It drives me nuts! Because it gives the impression he just sat down and whipped out masterpiece after masterpiece.
Of course that is not what happened. I believe I have an answer to the mystery of his missing work.... Didn't he have something like 10 children? Any artist with young kids around knows that keeping a child busy, especially when we are painting, takes imagination and quick thinking. I think I know what Vermeer did with all those practice pieces.... He let his children color on them.
That's another reason to love Rembrandt's trail, because with Rembrandt you see the struggle, the practice, even the poor work you wouldn't want to show.
This fruit bowl sits on our dining room table. I have painted this (chair) and the (fruit bowl) before separately. The sunlight coming in the south window often stops me in my tracks when it lights up the room and in this case lit up the fruit. The large piece of fruit on the right is a grapefruit. I believe that is the first grapefruit I ever painted. (just a little historical reference).