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Self Oil Painting Portrait
Self Oil Painting Portrait
Have you ever wondered why there are oil painting self portraits of artists? And why almost every ordinary person wants to have his/ her own portrait? Well, this article will help you understand it a little better..
First, what exactly is an oil painting self portrait?
An oil painting self portrait is a representation of an artist, drawn, painted, photographed, or sculpted by the artist. Since the fifteenth century and the advent of the mirror, artists have modeled for themselves in their own works of art. Perhaps, it is an in-depth exploration of the artist’s own psyche or simply because as a model, the artist is clearly the cheapest and most available. Maybe the artists believe that as a practice, if you cannot capture the essence of yourself, how can you capture that of someone else? Whatever the reason, nearly every artist, in every medium from painters to sculptors have attempted this exploration of self. Although oil painting self portraits have been created by artists since the earliest times, it was not until the Early Renaissance in the mid 1400s that artists were frequently identified depicting themselves as either the main subject, or as important characters in their work.
Thanks to better and cheaper mirrors, and the advent of the panel portrait, many painters, sculptors and printmakers tried some form of self-portraiture. The probable example is the earliest known panel oil painting self portrait by Jan van Eyck of 1433. The genre is venerable, but not until the Renaissance, with increased wealth and interest in the individual as a subject, did it become truly popular. He painted a separate portrait of his wife, and he belonged to the social group that had begun to commission portraits, already more common among wealthy Netherlanders than south of the Alps.
Kinds of self-portrait
An oil painting self portrait may be a portrait of the artist, or a portrait included in a larger work, including a group portrait. Many painters are said to have included depictions of specific individuals, including themselves, in painting figures in religious or other types of composition not intended to depict the actual persons as themselves. Normally these are just faces in a crowd, often at the corner of the work, but a particular hybrid genre developed where historical scenes were depicted using a number of actual persons as models, usually including the artist, giving the work a double function as portrait and history painting. Rubens and Rembrandt is a case in point. This culminated in the seventeenth century with the work of Jan de Bray, and has been revived in recent years in photography by Cindy Sherman.
Sometimes artists place their own image into group portraits, such as (probably) Jan van Eyck in the Arnolfini Portrait, who inspired Diego Velázquez in Las Meninas. Later group portraits of family, friends or professional groups became common.
The history of using mirror in self portrait painting
The oil painting self portrait use of a mirror; glass mirrors became available in Europe in the 15th century. The first mirrors used were convex, introducing deformations that the artist sometimes preserved. A painting by Parmigianino in 1524 Self-portrait in a mirror, demonstrates the phenomenon. Mirrors permit surprising compositions like the Triple self-portrait by Johannes Gumpp (1646), or more recently that of Salvador Dalí shown from the back painting his wife, Gala (1972-73). This use of the mirror often results in right-handed painters representing themselves as left-handed (and vice versa). Most of Rembrandt's self-portraits before 1660 show only one hand - the painting hand is left unpainted. He appears to have bought a larger mirror in about 1652, after which his oil painting self portraits become larger. Usually the face painted is therefore a mirror image of what the rest of the world saw, unless two mirrors were used. In 1658 a large mirror in a wood frame broke whilst being transported to his house; nonetheless, in this year he completed his Frick oil painting self portrait, his largest. Las Meninas, painted in 1656, shows Diego Velázquez working at the easel to the left.
Oil painting self portraits of the artist at work were, as mentioned above, the commonest form of medieval oil painting self portrait, and these have continued to be popular, with an especially large number from the eighteenth century on. One particular type in the medieval and Renaissance periods was the artist shown as Saint Luke (patron saint of artists) painting the Virgin Mary. Many of these were presented to the local Guild of Saint Luke, to be placed in their chapel. A famous large view of the artist in his studio is The Painter's Studio by Gustave Courbet (1855), an immense "Allegory" of objects and characters amid which the painter sits.
The size of single-sheet mirrors was restricted until technical advances made in France in 1688 by Bernard Perrot. They also remained very fragile, and large ones were much more expensive pro-rata than small ones - the breakages were re-cut into small pieces. About 80 cms, or two and a half feet, seems to have been the maximum size until then - roughly the size of the palace mirror in Las Meninas (the convex mirror in the Arnolfini Portrait is considered by historians impractically large, one of Van Eyck's many cunning distortions of scale). Largely for this reason, most early oil painting self portrait show painters at no more than half-length.
Oil painting self portraits have been a method of self-exploration since humans first gazed at their own reflection in a pool of water. With the invention of the mirror came an even stronger fascination to capture one's likeness. And even within the past ten years, the public's fascination with the way an artist sees him/herself has led to exhibitions like the National Self-Portrait Collection in the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery.
Oil painting self portraits, we have found, can be carefully staged to show the audience only what the artist wishes to project, or deeply revealing, inadvertently displayed feelings of anguish and pain. Oil painting self portraits have been used to test new techniques, make a signature mark, launch into self-study, remember the past, and as a way to release emotion. Whichever way artists choose to construct their images, they are forced to study their own personas both emotionally and physically.
No one can deny that the tendency to capture one self’s appearance does exist. And the era of cheap, lightweight digital cameras — in cell phones, in computers, in hip pockets, even on key chains make it easier and more convenient for everyone to have their own self portrait which has also meant that people who did not consider themselves photography buffs as recently as five years ago, are filling ever-larger hard drives with thousands of images from their lives. However, this makes digital photos mediocre. An oil painting self portrait will undoubtedly stand out. Contact us to have your own oil painting self portrait painted in the best quality. http://theoilpaintingportrait.com/
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