Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Shaped by Impressionism and Post-Impressionism

It was spring of my high school sophomore year and I completed my first impressionist painting in egg tempera. The piece hung in the front hall of the school. Next thing I know the drama teacher told me she had to have it. I let her. Around that time she had become an administrator. Soon the piece was framed and was proudly displayed in her office.

My source material was a black and white photograph of big oak tree and shadows cast on the grass underneath. So, I had to invent colors for the image. Shortly after that I had a request from someone in the front office to paint another impressionist painting. In the next two years I painted several more impressionist landscapes. Between my junior and senior year, I traveled with five other students and my French teacher to France. The last five days of our five-week trip were spent in Paris. Naturally I enjoyed seeing the impressionist paintings at the Galerie Nationale du Jeu de Paume. The museum is now dedicated to photography. Also while in Paris I also saw some Vasarely paintings. His works are in the abstract geometric direction – usually with cirlcles.

Here are three pieces that I painted during this period. Although these images were from my head, they show the influence of impressionism and later post-impressionism on my work. Previously I had painted more in the Monet tradition, but now I was headed in the Seurat direction. By now my brushstrokes were more like dot dabs of paint. Although I loved Vasareley’s work, his influence on my work didn’t come until much later.

acrylic on canvas pad, 12" x 16"

acrylic on canvas pad, 12" x 16"

acrylic on canvas pad, 16" x 20"


  1. These really work well with the dot technique... what a nice feel to the painting!

  2. I'm glad you enjoyed seeing them. Thank your for the feedback.

    Once in a while I like to look at my earlier works. Sometimes I find pieces I forgot existed.

  3. great work, lovely art pieces. are you a fan of chuck close at all?htt

  4. In 1998 I saw a Chuck Close retrospective show in Chicago. The show included his photo-realistic work through his photo-abstract work. I was fascinated by his process and by his method of warping what was in each of his squares. So, yes, I do like his work.

    I’m not sure I’d like to have my face painted that big with all that detail, however.