Introduction and background study

by suruchi

Van Gogh Self Portrait

“It isn’t an easy Job to Paint Oneself”

Vincent van Gogh (1853 – 1890); a Dutch painter, is one of the most famous artist of the world. He is associated with Post-Impressionism period of art history. Although his work was largely unrecognized during his lifetime, his legacy lies in the evolution of expressionism in modern art.

In course of four years, between 1885 and 1889, Van Gogh painted nearly 40 self-portraits. During this period his artistic interpretations have been continuously evolving. Van Gogh’s growth as an artist was marked by several influences starting from the time when he first moved to Paris in 1885-6. His work in portraiture has constantly emerged from using dark and earthy tones, which were symbolic of traditional dutch art, to a more lighter and brighter color palette inspired by Impressionism and Pointilism. None the less, Vincent constantly drew inspiration from Japanese woodcuts as well.  His remarkably distinctive artistic style is attributed by an expressive use of bright and complementary colors, application of thick paint, rhythmic brushstrokes and complex spatial perspective.

The above image shows a progression in Van Gogh’s self-portrait renderings.

For my study, I’m focussing on understanding Van Gogh’s style in rendering his self-portraits and based on careful understanding transposing the surface details to a 3D digital model. Since, most of the work produced by Van Gogh has the has the qualities of Impasto oil painting techniques, therefore, this also forms a very important consideration in my research. This project is a step towards establishing an impasto based oil painterly technique that may be used to creating stylization in 3d digital characters.