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4 Tips on How to Read & Analyze a Painting

Art is complex. Art is thought-provoking. Art is captivating and stimulating. With that being said, no piece of art is the same. Different pieces of art have different meanings, though - of course, all pieces are open to individual interpretation.

Here are our tips on how to read and analyze a painting:

  1. Research the artist! 
    Sometimes, knowing who the artist is will tell you all that you need to know about a piece of art. A quick Google search could bring you to their personal website, which may contain an "About Me" to summarize their work. Most artists have a special theme that connects all of their artwork together. That alone can tell an observer everything they need to know about the art.jermaine-rodgers-art-print-on-wood
    "Tell Me How to Help You" by Jermaine Rodgers
  2.  Analyze the colors, shapes, symbols, and characters.
    Take a closer look at the art. Every aspect should have a different meaning.
    -Are there different colors? Different colors tend to have different meanings, and can contribute to different moods.
    -Are there any shapes and symbols? These can provide clear meanings for every piece of art.
    -How about the characters? Every character has a different story. Their actions, appearance, and art style can help you piece together the art's story - which brings us to the next point.
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    "Bootleg Pop" by Matt Gondek
  3. Does the art tell a story?
    Remember, it's important to take a look at the big picture. Carefully examine every detail of the painting. Ask yourself why it was put the together the way it was. Draw a conclusion from there.
    Tip: The art piece's name may be a big clue to what the whole piece is about!
    pendelton_fb_square david chung prints on wood
  4. Finally, take a look at the canvas.
    The canvas is important! Here at Prints on Wood, many of the artists that work with us choose to print their paintings on wood canvases. Some will say that the plywood adds a subtle, vintage feel to their paintings. Others will say that they appreciate the way the wood grain enhances the color and style of the artwork.

Want to give it a try? Take a look at this painting called "The Gift" by Laurie McClave. What do you think it represents? Leave a comment below with your answers!

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