Claude Monet was an artist during the late 1800’s who did a lot of experimenting with color. His paintings were impressionist in that the illusion of his forms disappear the closer you get to the painting. He was a master at using brush strokes to create forms in his compositions. However, something that made him well known is that in his paintings he represented color with impressions of light. For example in his painting, “Impression, Sunrise”
, you’ll see that the only inputs of color in his painting is where the light would be in nature. This created an interesting concept, because he treated his canvas like a retina. It saw light and color as we did and typically he would go into furth depth and create a series of his paintings. He would go to the same places and paint the same thing repeatedly but at different times of day to understand how light and color can affect an image. Because of Monet, artists were influenced to experiment with impressionism and light.
What caught my attention learning about Claude Monet is that in his later years he began to lose his sight because of cataract. These conditions altered his paintings and style a bit, it led to abstractness and yellow undertones in his paintings. You can see the difference in his style in the painting, “Bridge over a Pond of Water Lilies”:
This is a painting of his same famous bridge in his garden, but he painted it when he began to suffer from cataract. If you compare this painting to his earlier ones-
there are some big changes in his style in that he had less attention to detail and his colors became more warmed tone during his later years because he was painting what he saw. This is not saying his work was bad during these unfortunate times but just different. In both styles he experimented with color and texture with brushstrokes, still keeping his same impressionist influences. What I enjoy about his work personally is that impressionist style, his choice of color is really interesting to me, I love that he lets light control where his color goes and I would love to try that style in my future scape paintings.