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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Era (02/03/11)

TITLE: A Study of Color and Light
By Barbara Lynn Culler


Standing atop a wind-swept grassy knoll is a lovely lady gazing over her left shoulder. Her long brown curls are at rest across her chest, yet her loose-fitting pale blue gown billows with the wind. The simple frock is highlighted and shadowed with variations of white and beige. She holds onto an olive green fluted-edge parosol; postitioned to obstruct the radiant light emanating from the sun. The multi-hued colors of the sky contrast with the grouping of bright white clouds that cascade into palettes of sage green; seemingly shifting with the wind. A few feet forward and to the right of her is a young boy wearing a straw hat. His garments appear to be of the same shades of blue as that of the lady. His body faces forward in the direction that the woman is peering and he seems intent on looking at the same thing.

This depiction is my observation of the painting titled “Woman with Parasol” by Claude Monet. With words I described my impression of the scene, much like Monet illustrated landscapes with paint. As a result of his distinctive style of interpretation, Monet was attributed with initiating the Impressionist Era in 1872 France, when his painting “Impression,Sunrise” was critiqued in a satirical newspaper.

Impressionist art began as a movement of artist going against the rigid conventional model for painting that was standard in that era. The artists used compositions of light, unique mixtures of bold colors and the allusion of movement to capture the scene. Most subjects in this style of art were in the out of doors where light played an intergral part. Often, paintings were contsructed at various times of day to capture certain colors composed from the merging of different angles. The period was most popular in the 1870’s and 1880’s and included well-known artists Renoir, Edgar Degas, Edouard Manet and Mary Cassatt.

Artist who worked in the Impressionistic style painted their perception of the scene and accentuated the colors rather than details. Like writers who format words to articulate the message in the written word, these crafters configured the techniques of brush strokes, light and color to convey their idea of beauty in an oftentimes ethereal way. They painted “out of the box.” Other Modern Art movements were born as a result of the methods used in Impressionistic art, and the style remains a popular genre.

I experience a sense of tranquility when looking upon these simplistic paintings and think that maybe that’s what the artists desire. It’s highly unlikely that my writing would lead to a popular fad such as happened with Claude Monet, however, I would like to hope that my composition of words would portray a simple, yet vibrant impression of the subject being observed. That in of itself would lead to a new personal era.

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This article has been read 477 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Kathy Stevens02/11/11
I enjoyed your "brush strokes" of words very much -- a beautiful composition. A nice flow -- I could see a picture of words forming. Beautiful work.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/12/11
You did paint a picture with your words while educating me about art.
Norma-Anne Hough02/13/11
Lovely write. We are all artists in our own field.
Sometimes we gain world wide recognition others just gain the approval of friends and family:)
Well done. Love that painting you highlighted.
Mildred Sheldon02/13/11
You my friend did paint a magnificent picture with your words. I also received an education in the world of painting. Good job and thank you.
Brenda Rice 02/15/11
My,my how nicely done. So informative and yet so easy to read. Thanks for sharing.