Looking at van Gogh

I have always liked the art of Vincent van Gogh. As a college student I bought a print of his most famous “The Starry Night”. After several dorm room moves and then my first apartment it became too wrinkled, torn, and perforated to display. I tossed it. Over the course of life I’ve acquired several van Gogh reproductions: a crewel work of “Pink Peach Tree in Blossom” done by my Grandmother, a new (higher quality) print of “The Starry Night”, a small print of “Sunflowers” (the ones in a vase) and a companion “Irises” (the ones in a vase). To add to the collection I painted several in the style of van Gogh because it is easy to imitate and is a favorite of the Wine & Canvas franchise. I’ve done the Starry Night Tardis and Starry Night at Hogwarts. My latest was also a take on a van Gogh painting.

Irises is one of several paintings of irises by Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh, and one of a series of paintings he executed at the Saint Paul-de-Mausole asylum in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France, in the last year before his death in 1890. He started painting Irises within a week of entering the asylum, in May 1889, working from nature in the hospital garden. (Wikipedia)

We started with a blank canvas and painted it yellow. This was perhaps the easiest start I’ve had in awhile.

What followed was a mishmash of warm colors in oranges and red seemingly random in various locations on the canvas.

Then things got really crazy. The instructor was good however she didn’t give the instructions like they did in the past – 1 brush length from the bottom or 1 hand width from the edge. We made leaves with green, and mixing in either yellow, blue or white. She showed us how to make the flower and then urged us to start putting them on the canvas wherever we felt moved. By this point we were losing the natural light in the area (in the patio area inside the mall). It was a rush against time. Even though I had every intention of taking photos along the way, I forgot in the madness. Below is my finished (sort of) painting. I forgot to do the outlines on the leaves…

And this was the instructor’s painting… I think I did a great job.


The painting stopped at 9:00 PM when the restaurant turned off the few lights that were on essentially leaving us in a dimly lit mall. Although I really liked the instructor, the venue had much to be desired. I hope when she schedules the next van Gogh (she promised sunflowers) it is in a better lit area. If I’d been in the back row I might have been completely lost!!

25 thoughts on “Looking at van Gogh

  1. I like the colors in yours better than in your teacher’s. Yours are more brilliant. When I was in college I bought a copy of Mother and Child by Picasso, done in his early years when both mother and child are recognizable. I think I took it to Africa with us. It did not survive. Later I ordered another copy, and it is now framed and hanging in my bedroom. If I ever have to move to a retirement home I will take it with me. I have not tried one of those painting classes yet. Have you seen my daughter-in-law’s art? She puts the paint on the canvas and blows on it to create beautiful abstract art. She’s on facebook and also has a website. “Canary in a Coal Mine Art.”

    On Fri, Jul 13, 2018 at 7:07 AM, A Different Perspective wrote:

    > murisopsis posted: “I have always liked the art of Vincent van Gogh. As a > college student I bought a print of his most famous “The Starry Night”. > After several dorm room moves and then my first apartment it became too > wrinkled, torn, and perforated to display. I tossed it. O” >

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  2. I do like your rendition better. Daughter and I are scheduled to go with ladies from church to Painting with a Twist next Saturday. No idea what they picked to do.

    I like Monet’s work.

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  3. Your painting is beautiful. These sessions sound like fun. I wonder where they have them close to me…I will check on the internet.

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  4. That sounds like a lovely way to spend an evening. We had a free-style painting event once, in a coffee shop which I visit regularly. I hope your next such event features sufficient lighting, until the time is up.

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    1. A Starry Night bear?? I’m curious how that looks… Is it like a CareBear but with the Starry Night on the tummy?? This painting looks really good – not that it could pass as a forgery but it is pretty and I feel confident hanging it in my family room! Thanks for the compliment!!

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  5. That painting came out very well! And I like the way the instructor let each of you make your own choices, but still gave any guidance you happened to need. Very nice!

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  6. I found the differences between your painting and the instructor’s very interesting. They clearly demonstrate how each of us perceives the world a little differently. I liked your bolder flowers better but I liked the instructor’s brighter background. If you had combined the two it probably would have been hideous but individually, they are both beautiful.

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    1. Thank you. I think the instructor’s was done with a lot more time and perhaps more detail as a result. The evening always feels rushed at the end. It turned out as a very cheerful painting.

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  7. I love this my daughter! I think yours is just as good as your instructor’s or even better in some ways! Thanks for sharing it!

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    1. Thanks! I have it hanging in my family room and it is quite lovely. It looks so cheery with all the yellow and greens.I’m hoping they do the van Gogh sunflowers in a vase soon. It wasn’t on the August schedule but I am hoping for September!

      Liked by 1 person

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