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Learn Still life from Patrick Caulfield

Have you seen the painting “Pottery” by Patrick Caulfield?learn-still-life-patrick-caulfield

The composition in this painting is depicted in different perspectives. The pots in the foreground of the painting appear to be painted from above as we can see the open rims of the pots. The pots in the center of the canvas are viewed from eye level and those at the far end seem to be kept above the spectator. Though they are in different line of vision, they combine together to form one entity.

If you want to paint still life, you should look for paintings of Patrick Caulfield.

Patrick Caulfield was a painter and a printmaker from London who studied in 1956 at Chelsea School of Art, London and then continued his studies at the Royal College of Art (1960–63).

He is identified as one of the originators of pop art for his simple representation of everyday objects with a basic black outline. He has a distinctive style of his own. They are simple yet has subtle mystery and complexity. He painted his paintings flat so that it looked more like printed rather than being painted. He painted bowls, flowers, pots cabins, restaurants tables and chairs in simplified lines avoiding details.

What art lessons do you get from Patrick Caulfield’s paintings?

  1. Perspective – One of the important lessons in learning to draw is to understand the line of vision of learn-still-life-patrick-caulfield-9yearthe observer. How does the same object look from different eye level? So whether you are painting a bowl or a room, see the angle from where you want to paint.
  2. Simplify your drawings. Remove distractions by avoiding details in the picture. Use subdued and restricted palettes .
  3. Use flat colors and bold outlines, bringing the object more into focus.
  4. He outlines his entire painting with bold lines with the same thickness. So though the paintings represented depth, it also gave an illusion of space.

Now look around and paint simple objects in your room as you see them. Try and paint the simplified version of the room, table, chair or even the stairs.

learn-still-life-patrick-caulfield-lilcreativekidsThe vase and the clock in my room drew my attention. Though my windows are depicted at an angle, the vase, clock and dolls and kept facing me when I sit on my chair.

Draw the objects in your room as you see them. Use watercolor paper as we are going to use acrylic paints. After you have outlined the drawing with bold black lines, start filling with colors. Use few colors. I subdued the colors by mixing black and white with the base colors. Then I colored it flat.

Patrick Caulfield’s paintings were earlier characterized by flat images of simple objects of everyday use. Gradually he shifted his attention to architectural elements like drawing rooms, restaurants, tables, windows and doors. He then moved on to insert details like you would see in photorealistic paintings.

Visit Still life with Wayne Thiebaud and Jim Dine.

If you are interested in pop art, you should visit Romero Britto art style and Keith Haring art and abstract from Tom Fedro.

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