Vincent Van Gogh

Vincent Van Gogh was born in 1853 and was a Dutch Post Impressionist Painter. Van Gogh is arguably one of the most famous painters, both for his art work and his tormented existence. In his earlier life, Van Gogh sought out work in religion and teaching but as time drew on, he took the teachings of christianity quite literally renouncing all worldly possessions, he was later dismissed by the church for his erratic behaviour. Van Gogh still longed to serve humanity thought, so in the 1880’s Van Gogh turned to art and creating as a way of serving human kind. Van Gogh suffered with managing his mental health throughout his life, famously cutting off a piece of his ear and later committing suicide by shooting himself. Van Gogh’s work produced in his quite short career, only really became popular after his death, and he sadly lived in poverty for much of his life, he now commonly represents the typical idea of the “tortured artist”.

Still Life with Lemons on a Plate, 1887, Vincent Van Gogh

Looking at Van Gogh’s still life work I chose the above “Still Life with Lemons on a Plate”, this example beautifully illustrates Van Gogh’s use of bold colour, and short energetic brush marks. For example you can see the lime green hatch markings on the lemons, and the vibrant purples and blues surrounding the shadows of the plate.

So I didn’t have any lemons to hand but I thought the vibrancy of the yellow bananas still translated well in what I wanted to achieve. In line with the colours that Van Gogh used in his “Still Life with Lemons” I reimagined my photograph using a dark brown background, and turquoise/jade surface. Comparing the painting to the photograph now I can see that I have failed to capture the shadow behind the fruit bowl in the corner of the wall and behind the bananas, so the painting lacks a little depth. I think reimagining the colour though does make the overall image appear more striking. I attempted to use the same hatch makings in the style of Van Gogh to indicate the shadow on the surface and on the bananas and apple, which I think is quite effective.

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