Wednesday, June 8, 2011

On photorealism

Via Mental Floss, a Web Urbanist article on hyperrealistic painting, like this Steve Mills painting:


I confess that I don’t really get it. The paintings are not realistic, they’re photorealistic. They show traits typical of cameras and lenses, like limited depth-of-field. For all I know, the paintings are painted from photographs.

As a technical achievement, the results are astounding. I’m honestly amazed that humans can do this. But what does the painting add that a photograph lacks? It seems to me like a great deal of extra effort, without an artistic payoff.

Photograph by yours truly. It didn’t take 500 hours. Does it make a difference?


  1. As far as I know, photorealistic paintings are indeed usually painted right from photographs.

    Regardless, sandpipers rock.

  2. @ksekelsky: Somebody should do a photorealistic painting of a pictorialist photograph.

  3. take a look at the original painting and how flat the photograph looks in comparison than you will get it!


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