Read an Excerpt
Artists are very unique and important people. Why? They have the ability to make you think, lift your spirit, and touch your heart. There are all kinds of artists, and they work in many different ways. Of course you know that painters are artists, but did you know that actors, dancers, and musicians are artists, too? Try for a moment to imagine a world without music or dancing, paintings or sculptures, movies, plays, or television, and you will realize how very special artists are. In this book you will see how painters see themselves, and how they see their creative cousins, the performing artists.
In this picture of a painter painting a picture, the artist shows herself at her easel as she begins to work on a blank canvas. Can you tell what she has painted so far? What do you think the finished picture will be? The artist was skilled at painting things as they actually look, such as the texture of the fabric of her dress. Imagine running your hand along her red sleeves. How does the cloth feel against your skin? Such a detail gives the picture a lifelike quality. What other realistic details can you find?
SELF-PORTRAIT WITH SEVEN FINGERS
Some painters paint realistic pictures, but this painter liked to play with what your eyes see by changing how the world really looks. In this portrait of himself, the artist fills the canvas with dabs of intense and vivid colors that make the picture look like a dream world. How many colors can you find? The artist also uses color to make you look at things differently. such as his bright red and green curls. What other colors surprise your eye?
As you know from the title of the picture, the artist painted seven fingers on his left hand. Why do you think he did this? In what other unusual ways has he depicted himself and his studio? His seven-fingered hand gestures toward the painting on the easel. What do you think this gesture means? If the artist could speak to you from his canvas, what do you think he would say?