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Thursday, May 18, 2006
  Dan Bodner Paintings from Photographs
dan bodner painting
After the discussion on painting from photographs, Karl Zipser has gone out and almost been converted into a photograph using artist ;-)
Karl visited the studio of Dan Bodner recently and had a talk to him about how he uses photography with painting..
Photographs are not only Bodner's subjects, but a way to study his own work. He has found that by making a photograph of a painting, he can see it as though looking for the first time. As Bodner explains, "By making the photographs daily, I can get a distance from the work as I'm painting it."
Read Part 1 and Part 2 of the interview over at Karl's blog.
More Dan Bodner paintings can be seen on his website too.
>> Contemporary Artist News, Art Blogs
BgArt News Blog Comments:
I think an artist needs to exult in his or her subjects, whatever these may be. This is what Dan Bodner has achieved. It is difficult to express the raw enthusiasm he has for the process of making and using photographs, which I witness when I met with him recently. By bringing the subject to the forefront, he dispels what I think is the main objection about art from photographs -- the uncertainty about what one is looking at. When this barrier is removed, it becomes possible to appreciate the artwork in its own terms. The beauty of showing the photographs together with the paintings is that it allows the observer to look over the artist's shoulder, as it were, and compare the world captured in the photo with the world created by the artist.
On the subject of photos as an aid to painting (not a source), a mirror is cheaper. A mirror image of your work shows up all the imbalances and mistake that are so easy to overlook when you're used to looking at it in reality. You see it as someone new to the work would see it. Sometimes it's really embarrassing. Whoops! Back to the drawing board.
a digital camera works fine too, and you can also turn it either way in photoshop, try it out in grayscale to see your values etc.

I think it's fine to work by photo, it's fine to even just copy ir straight off, but I prefer things made from life or perhaps imagination with photo reference for maybe a person's position, things like that that you need to see. I wish I had a 24/7 model but I don't. Personally I don't like the straight from photo pictures, they tend to get stiff, but every style has its place :)
The recent, fine biography of Thomas Eakins, Thomas Eakins Revenge, details the intensive use of photography by that artist in creating his paintings. He was also notable for his use of the camera for capturing the image of particularly good models as well as more sophisticated studies of motion than were those of the more famous Muybridge (whose work was less scientifically oriented though the two were collaborators following the earliest work of both.
It's safe to say that Bodner is on the verge of boosting himself to a whole new level as an artist. He has made a great change of moving to street scenes and I think he will benefit greatly from that.
Also phgotgraphs are great for the types of painting that he does
Hey Uncle Dan!
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