On the Use of Optical Devices
by Baroque Painters
 
And the fascinating
relationship between
science and art
On the Use of Optical Devices
by Baroque Painters
 
And the fascinating
relationship between
science and art
Working Art Department, Science
Department and Technology
Department


Make a small camara obscura to see
how light forms...
Objetives in Visual Art classes


To know how images are formed out of
light.



To compare Vermeer and Caravaggio
paint...
What we are doing in Visual Art
classes


Searching for information about the use
of optical devices in art in Baroque ti...
What we have done


A pinhole camera made from a shoe
box or others smaller, exposed on
photographic paper. The length of...
How to make a pinhole
Camara to see images


1. Paint the entire box with black paint



2. Make a hole with a needle in...
Short video showing the principles of a camara obscura
and a detail from a Vermeer’s painting projected through it

Vermee...
How to make a Shoebox
Pinhole camara


Paint the inside of the box with black
paint



Make a hole with a needle. It has...
What we have done
What we have done
What we have done
What we have done
Although optical devices were used by
European painters from the early 15th century,
1600 was the moment when the look of
...


An illustration of
a camera
obscura from
J. Zahn,
Oculustelediopt
ricus 2nd ed.,
Nuremberg,
1702. The
Hague,
Koninklijk...
the basic camera obscura
consists of a
room with a small opening, the
images are projected both
upside down and reversed

...
The booth-type camera
obscura
It is a sort of closed box fitted
with some arrangement of
lenses or mirrors large enough
fo...
There is absolutely no
documentary evidence
to support the idea of
using optical devices by
Vermeer or Caravaggio.
The onl...
There are essentially five characteristics of
Vermeer's paintings that suggest the use of a
camera obscura


perspective
...
PERSPECTIVE


For centuries painters had both a
working and theoretical knowledge of
perspective and understood very well...
PERSPECTIVE:

Soldier and a Laughing Girl
c. 1658 (190 Kb); Oil on canvas, 49.2 x 44.4
cm; The Frick Collection, New York
...
Because the
viewpoint of the
picture is unusually
close to the table, in
17th-century painting
Vermeer's
contemporaries
wo...
PECULIAR EFFECTS PRODUCED
BY THE CAMARA OBSCURA:
POINTILLÈS did not focus with complete precision
17th-century lenses


t...
details of the lion's head finial
in Seymour's camera obscura (left)
and of Vermeer's Girl in a Red Hat

a purposely unfoc...
Optical
devices
certainly don't
paint pictures,
the use of
them
diminishes no
great artist.
The Music Lesson
c. 1662-65 (1...
BIBLIOGRAPHY


http://www.essentialvermeer.com/camera_obscura/co_one.html



www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/empire_seapow...
The Art of
Painting


The painting is
famous for being
one of Vermeer's
favourites. Many
art experts
believe that the
wor...
On the use of optical devices by baroque painters
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On the use of optical devices by baroque painters

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On the use of optical devices by baroque painters

  1. 1. On the Use of Optical Devices by Baroque Painters   And the fascinating relationship between science and art
  2. 2. On the Use of Optical Devices by Baroque Painters   And the fascinating relationship between science and art
  3. 3. Working Art Department, Science Department and Technology Department  Make a small camara obscura to see how light forms images  Construct a booth-type camera obscura existing in Veermer age and trace the image formed from it using a lens  Make a camara obscura out of a dark room and trace a drawing from it
  4. 4. Objetives in Visual Art classes  To know how images are formed out of light.  To compare Vermeer and Caravaggio paintings with other paintings to analize the differences when using optical devices or not.
  5. 5. What we are doing in Visual Art classes  Searching for information about the use of optical devices in art in Baroque times and before.  Searching on the Internet for information about Caravaggio and Vermeer.  Searching for information about the still existing debate in the use of the camara obscura
  6. 6. What we have done  A pinhole camera made from a shoe box or others smaller, exposed on photographic paper. The length of the exposure was about 10 minutes.  Elaborate this presentation
  7. 7. How to make a pinhole Camara to see images  1. Paint the entire box with black paint  2. Make a hole with a needle in one of the faces. The hole have to be smooth  3. Cut a small rectangle in the opposite side (1 by 2 cm) to look through it.  Place a transparent tracing paper between both faces.  Look through the window: an inverted
  8. 8. Short video showing the principles of a camara obscura and a detail from a Vermeer’s painting projected through it Vermeer Master of Light 45 Camera Obscura.wmv
  9. 9. How to make a Shoebox Pinhole camara  Paint the inside of the box with black paint  Make a hole with a needle. It has to be very smooth. Use the tap of a yoghurt. Cover the hole with black tape. This will be your camara shutter  In a pitch black room place the photograph paper in the oppossite face inside the box. The camara is now
  10. 10. What we have done
  11. 11. What we have done
  12. 12. What we have done
  13. 13. What we have done
  14. 14. Although optical devices were used by European painters from the early 15th century, 1600 was the moment when the look of European painting changed.  The agent of change was Caravaggio in Italy.  And Veermer in Holland.
  15. 15.  An illustration of a camera obscura from J. Zahn, Oculustelediopt ricus 2nd ed., Nuremberg, 1702. The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek.
  16. 16. the basic camera obscura consists of a room with a small opening, the images are projected both upside down and reversed the portable camera obscura uses a lens to focus the image which is reflected from a slanted mirror to a translucent screen, the image is righted but still reversed
  17. 17. The booth-type camera obscura It is a sort of closed box fitted with some arrangement of lenses or mirrors large enough for an observer to be seated inside. The principal advantage is that, because the space is enclosed securely, only the light which is filtered through the lens aperture enters the booth. Thus, the image is particularly clean and brilliant
  18. 18. There is absolutely no documentary evidence to support the idea of using optical devices by Vermeer or Caravaggio. The only source of information is the visual information exhibited by the paintings themselves. The Milkmaid c. 1658-60 (150 Kb); Oil on canvas, 45.4 x 41 cm (17 7/8 x 16 1/8 in); Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
  19. 19. There are essentially five characteristics of Vermeer's paintings that suggest the use of a camera obscura  perspective  tonal rendering  composition  handling of light  some peculiar effects produced uniquely by the camera obscura.
  20. 20. PERSPECTIVE  For centuries painters had both a working and theoretical knowledge of perspective and understood very well that, to create a believable three dimensional space, figures which appeared far from the viewer had to be represented smaller while those which were nearer had to be proportionately larger.
  21. 21. PERSPECTIVE: Soldier and a Laughing Girl c. 1658 (190 Kb); Oil on canvas, 49.2 x 44.4 cm; The Frick Collection, New York Note the evident discrepancy in scale of the two figures. Before eyes had been accustomed to the modern photographic camera's way of seeing, in 1891 Joseph Pennell was the first to suppose that Vermeer might have employed an optical device as an aid to his painting
  22. 22. Because the viewpoint of the picture is unusually close to the table, in 17th-century painting Vermeer's contemporaries would have made this closer object smaller and render what the artist knew rather that what he The Music Lesson saw c. 1662-65 (180 Kb); Oil on canvas, 74.6 x 64.1 cm; Royal Collection, St. James' Palace, London
  23. 23. PECULIAR EFFECTS PRODUCED BY THE CAMARA OBSCURA: POINTILLÈS did not focus with complete precision 17th-century lenses  through the entire depth of fields.  The effects of imperfect focus in the camera obscura produced the so called pointillès found in many of Vermeer's paintings. Vermeer's pointillès, globular touches of thick opaque paint, "resemble nothing so much as the fuzzy, overlapping sequins of light that appear in an out-of-focus photograph and are referred to as 'discs of confusion' by photographers." 7  The disks of confusion seen on the screen of a camera obscura occur in the place of natural highlights, bright reflections of various forms and intensities frequently seen with the naked eye on shiny surfaces such
  24. 24. details of the lion's head finial in Seymour's camera obscura (left) and of Vermeer's Girl in a Red Hat a purposely unfocussed photograph modern day door knocker photographed at the Oude Delft, Delft, which gives surprisingly similar results as Seymour's experiments
  25. 25. Optical devices certainly don't paint pictures, the use of them diminishes no great artist. The Music Lesson c. 1662-65 (180 Kb); Oil on canvas, 74.6 x 64.1 cm; Royal Collection, St. James' Palace, London
  26. 26. BIBLIOGRAPHY  http://www.essentialvermeer.com/camera_obscura/co_one.html  www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/empire_seapower/vermeer_camera_02.shtml Philip Steadman, Vermeer and the Camera obscura  Jean-Luc Delsaute, "The Camera Obscura and Painting in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries," in Vermeer Studies, p. 111  Philip Steadman, Vermeer's Camera: Uncovering the Truth Behind the Masterpieces, Oxford, 2001, p. 21  Mariet Westermann, Vermeer and the Dutch Interior, Madrid, 2003, p. 226     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jruwMMT_bc8: Against the use of the camara  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johannes_Vermeer: Vermeer  External links  Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Johannes Vermeer  (Videos): Vermeer: Master of Light - at the National Gallery of Art, Washington › Part 1: Woman Holding a Balance › Part 2: The Music Lesson
  27. 27. The Art of Painting  The painting is famous for being one of Vermeer's favourites. Many art experts believe that the work of art is an allegory of painting, hence the alternate title of the painting. It is the largest and most complex of all of Vermeer's works.

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