Paint, canvas, brushes, and clocks!

Posted: September 26, 2014 in The Store

davinch-3Sometimes we create art smoothly and quickly. We are amazed at how things just seemed to flow. But there are those times when we struggle with the art we are creating. Benches filled with brushes, paints everywhere, easel at attention, and the canvas is waiting. And waiting, and waiting. Well, keep in mind that you’re in good company.

Leonardo, a mysterious gal, and supper.

davinch-2Leonardo da Vinci painted the Mona Lisa over the course of 7 years.  Did you get that?  Seven years!  Records indicate that he invested 4 years in just getting the work portrait started.  Can’t you hear the canvas calling his name?  For an unknown reason he stopped painting Ms. Mona at the four year mark.  I couldn’t uncover the reason for that but when he started up again, he spent an additional 3 years to finish it, reportedly just prior to his death in 1519.  All in all he spent 7 years painting the mysterious woman with that provocative semi-smile.  Interesting, when you consider that Michael Angelo painted the entire Sistine chapel in just over four years from July 1508 to October 1512.

Of course, one of the most widely-recognized works of art is Da Vinci’s “The Last Supper.”  It has become the subject of intellectual and theological controversy, while at the same time, serving as inspiration to artists worldwide.  According to art historian Helen Gardner the scope and depth of his interests were without precedent and “his mind and personality seem superhuman, the man himself mysterious and remote.”

The Last Supper has gone through davinch-4several major restorations in last 500 years.  Within sixty years of it being painted, the figures in the were faded so as to make them unrecognizable.  The first restoration began in 1726. The entire painting was varnished to protect it.  This solution did not prevent the painting from further deterioration.  In 1978 a new restoration effort began.  The room in which the painting resides was sealed and modified into a climate-controlled area.  The painting was permanently stabilized, using scientific methods.  The restoration of the painting was completed in 1999, which was 21 years after the project began.  So even after his death long periods of time followed his works.

davinch-1Moral of the story: There are no short cuts to creating. Every day: draw, sketch, paint, and observe.  Keep at it.  Keep working.  Be sure to add time to your array of painting tools.

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What Is Plein Air Painting?

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It was said that these windows, these portals through space and time, presented cities imagined by a brilliant architect whose designs evoke both flood and flight, whose life’s work spans centuries that pass in decades. His is a world where thought manifests as pure form and color, destined to remain unconstructed in ours, though no less real.  (Life Without Buildings).

“Is drawing dead?” The man asked a packed house in Yale School of Architecture’s Rudolph Hall. The room next door for over flow, where his voice could be heard through connecting speakers, was full as well. The audience, silent, some with smug smiles and studied expressions, looked at the man and contemplated. Read the rest of this entry »

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