Art students can learn painting techniques and styles by copying famous paintings in art history. Copying trains your hand and eye coordination and lets you get a deeper appreciation of the arts. You can learn the different styles and painting techniques by studying these notable paintings. It inspires you to create something beautiful as well.
In 2010, OverstockArt.com, an online business that sells painting reproductions, revealed the top 10 list of most reproduced paintings. If you are thinking which painting to copy, check out this list for inspiration.
1. The Starry Night by Vincent van Gogh
The Starry Night is among Vincent van Gogh’s most celebrated works. The subject of the painting is the night scene in the village Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, southern France. It was painted during the time Van Gogh spent inside an asylum in the same village. The painting is filled with movements and contrasts, from the colors used to the quietness of the village vis a vis the swirling night sky.
2. Café Terrace at Night by Vincent van Gogh
Vincent van Gogh was fascinated with nocturnal motifs and Café Terrace at Night was no exception. He was known for his innovative use of lines, textures, and colors. You can see the contrast between the yellows and blues to black paint he used in this piece. The roughness of the cobblestone street is a direct contrast to the smoothness of the cafe.
3. The Kiss by Gustav Klimt
The Kiss is an oil and gold leaf on canvas. It depicts a couple embracing with elaborate robes and ornamentation. Gustav Klimt used the Art Nouveau style in this painting. The male figure is identified with squares and rectangles while the female figure has circles and soft lines. The couple is intimately entwined while the rest of their bodies dissolve in a shimmering flat pattern.
4. Poppy Fields near Argenteuil by Claude Monet
Claude Monet lived in Argenteuil, France from 1871-1878. The countryside became a great inspiration for Monet. The vast, bright landscapes around the region allowed Monet to experiment plein-air painting. In the painting, you’ll notice that he used blobs of paints to represent the poppies and trees, creating just an impression of the landscape.
5. The Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci
One of the most famous paintings in history, The Mona Lisa has been reproduced and copied by many artists. Leonardo da Vinci used the technique called sfumato wherein he used subtle gradation of tone and color. This technique blurs and softens the contours of the outline, creating an atmospheric effect and the facial features seem real.
Image source: http://www.webexhibits.org