“Girl Without a Pearl Earring”
20”x16” oil on panel
22”x18” Framed in a leather clad frame
My daughter Shannon is a willing and available muse. She is also a talented videographer and photographer. She is studying digital media and film production. She helped me duplicate Vermeer’s lighting when we staged this set up. Not so amazingly, we started with fancy lights and light boxes and umbrellas to soften and bounce for great lighting effects. But we ended up just sitting her near a window with bright sunlight, and positioning her to get the right amount of reflected light along her jawbone.The simplicity of this iconic pose fills me with awe. This is why I love Vermeer. He took ordinary scenes and elevated them.
I purchased the kimono Shannon is wearing from a shop in Tokyo, Japan. I used a green scarf in the head wrap to harmonize with the floral pattern on the kimono. Vermeer’s composition is so brilliant, that it doesn’t matter if colors and patterns on the clothing don’t match. It doesn’t matter if my model is not wearing an earring. (She doesn’t have pierced ears.) It doesn’t matter that Shannon is older than Vermeer’s model. We still recognize the original Vermeer painting that I am emulating here with mine. THAT is genius in my book!
Vermeer and his contemporaries of the 17th century Dutch master painters have always been and will likely always remain the most influential of the old masters in my art career. I fantasize that they shared my goal to be the best painter of classical realism I can be during my lifetime.
“Girl With a Pearl Earring”
by Johannes Vermeer
Oil on Canvas
The Hague, Netherlands