"ART is a word which summarizes THE QUALITY OF COMMUNICATION. "
L. Ron Hubbard

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

What is reality, REALLY?

Every once in a while I think, as a teacher, "am I steering my students right?" With beginning students, working from "reference" materials, such as photos or even other artists paintings, there's a great emphasis on correctly duplicating what is there.

It is important that the artist have sufficient confidence in his or her ability to duplicate, whether it be a photo or a live still life or figure.

But it's not the end-all and be-all. A work of art is not a copy. Long ago I was impressed by the idea that, if you sit 5 students in the same room painting from the same still life, you're going to get 5 different still lifes.

Let's take a painting recently done by student Greg Pirio. Greg "interpreted" the scene of a fisherman (shown in the resource photo below) and in so doing, came up with a painting that is very bright and alive. Much livelier, in fact, than "reality."