A place to see what is happening in Fine Arts at Rocky Mountain School for the Gifted and Creative

Monday, November 22, 2004

Did Painters of the Renaissance Use Optics ? Inquiring Minds Want To Know...

What accounts for the leap in artistic technique during the renaissance? How did artists achieve an "almost photographic realism"? Was it the rebirth of knowledge from the classical age? Was it the result of apprenticeship, genius or study? Was it the product of science, math and training in a new middle class society that valued the arts? Or was there some smoke and mirrors at play? Students in the middle school program explore the theory put forth by artist David Hockney, that painters as early as 1400 may have used optics as a basis for their paintings. Students are attempting to replicate Hockney's work and the techniques European masters may have used, by building simple box cameras of their own design. We are also attempting to turn a room at school into a camera. Later, a refrigerator box will become an outdoor studio. The goal is to produce a projected image that is clear enough to use to paint from.

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