Georgia O’Keefe

Georgia O’Keefe was born in 1887 and is arguably one of the most significant artists of the 20th century. O’Keefe was an American artist and is widely known for her depictions of flowers, abstracts and landscapes, however O’Keefe also painted still life such as the example below, “Peach and Glass”. There is a real intensity to the peach depicted against the white glass, and neutral background, it’s almost as if it is glowing and you can see the vibrant flesh that lay under the deep red skin.

Georgia O’Keeffe – Peach and Glass (1927)

In response to O’Keefe’s work I decided to tackle my own still life “Apple and Glass”, alas I had no peaches but I think the apple worked well and I really liked the speckled colours of reds, orange yellow and greens. Instead of using paint I decided I would attempt to use coloured pencils, which I have found quite difficult in the past in relation to creating colour and tone. My response does not depict O’Keefe’s dramatic and powerful use of colour due to the nature of using the pencils and lack of vibrancy in the items themselves, however I have made an attempt to mirror the composition of O’Keefe’s “Peach and Glass”.

Thinking about the composition and comparing the two, my response has more empty space surrounding the objects, whereas O’Keefe’s “Peach and Glass” feels much closer and more intimate, with the small dish holding the peach only just completely in the frame, it feels as though you can just reach in to pick it up, whereas there is definitely more distance in my depiction and looking more carefully at the composition the plate is slightly off, I haven’t quite depicted the correct structure and angle of the plate so it appears as if it is sort of floating in the drawing.

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