Thursday, 28 August 2014

17th Century Animal Painters


During the 17th and 18th century provincial painters were often commissioned to paint a landowner's prize animal. The style tended to be on the naive side and animal painters were low down in the list of genre artists. They were also prone to exaggeration to enhance the animals perceived qualities.

Anyway for a bit of fun a few years back I did the one above in "that" style. I am not sure where the actual painting is now.

I was asked the other day at the Exhibition I had in Aberglasney what I thought of artists using projectors. (Some artists project an image onto the painting surface and then trace/paint it).

Artists have used many varied means of achieving their aims over the years. The most obvious comparison to a projector is the camera obscura ( a pin hole which projects an image onto a screen or wall). Now this was used by many artists including, Joshua Reynolds, Canaletto and probably Vermeer. Others have used a glass screen to trace out their outlines. Photographs are now commonly used for reference purposes by pretty well all painters.

As for me I don't have a projector and have never used one but I think that each artist chooses the best method that works for them. Whether using a projector or not a great deal of skill is required to produce a good painting. A projector or camera obscura .. are just other tools for an artist to use. The means to the end are not an issue in my opinion.

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