A recent addition to the collection at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. and the subject of my latest copy is “Green Wheat Fields, Auvers” by Vincent van Gogh. It took approximately 35 hours to complete the copy. The major challenge was trying to duplicate the many swirls of paint with very thick impasto. Some visitors compare this particular painting to van Gogh’s “The Starry Night” which hangs at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. It is seen as a daytime version. I tend to agree as the sky with its many thick cloud swirls are very similar. My copy is primarily painted using a palette knife, which I believe van Gogh used while creating this masterpiece. In addition, he might have used the end of a paint brush to create the many ridges that give this beautiful painting its three dimensional feel and texture. The color variation between the original and my copy is a result of the lighting variations in the gallery. The original is illuminated with a warm spotlight while the copy has no special lighting. It was lots of fun creating this copy. From comments overheard, the original and, fortunately, my copy, appear to be loved by many visitors.
Beginning Tuesday, November 18, in the Impressionist gallery #86, I have a return engagement with Auguste Renoir to copy his very popular “Oarsmen at Chatou.” This particular painting reminds me of Renoir’s famous “Luncheon of the Boating Party.” Renoir created several similar scenes in his paintings emphasizing the brilliance of sun and water, summer and youth, and strong complimentary colors such as orange with blue and green with red. The challenge will be recreating the silky texture and feathery brushstrokes that are seen in so many of Renoir’s beautiful works and are so loved. Tune in to my blog for a progress report. Better yet, come visit me each Tuesday in gallery #86.