One picture, ten perspectives.

A class of ten participants, I was one of them who attended the long awaited Art Workshop early this week. It was my very first, a novice who has never experienced an art conversation with other artists.

Art is personal and it is an emotional topic. To establish a conversation about art, with candor is like forcing a turtle out from its shell. Excitement, curiosity, and all mix of feelings you can lay under the sun, I have them all.

Ten attendees were gathered in a circle, with each having to check-in with a simple introduction and their purpose. A picture of a painting was placed in the middle of circle for Contemplative Observation exercise. If I recall correctly, it was an image of ‘Woman with a Parasol – Madame Monet and Her Son’, an oil-on-canvas painting by Claude Monet from 1875. We’re required to observe the image for five minutes and record all interpretations and personal emotions gathered from this exercise.

At a glance, I thought it was a straightforward exercise, to utter what you see. How complicated can this be? It can be …if I take it too easy.

A woman with her son, country side, freedom, old times, moment, beautiful day, visible subject movement, perfect artist’s angle with good contrast of shadow against bright background and clever strokes technique to create movement impact and focal point.

Turned out, the sharing lasted for over 30 minutes with everyone shared a total different story. Longer than I thought.

None of them has the same view as I do.

None of them has the same emotion as I do. 

None of them has the same interpretation as I do.

One picture, ten perspectives.

Observe an image at a glance it gives you common sense.

Observe it longer it gives you hesitation.

Observe it with others it gives you notions.

Put them together it gives you perspectives.

art perspectives

Photo by Mike Petrucci 

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