Renoir's Girl With Watering Can: This one has always been special to me. My grandparents had a reproduction of it hanging in the guest bedroom I'd sleep in whenever I visited them, so I basically grew up admiring it. When I was a toddler I actually thought the little girl in the picture was supposed to be me, LOL, since I was always out working alongside my grandmother in her beautiful flower gardens. In fact, there was even a tree in their yard that Gammie always told me she believed I "brought back to life" because I'd spend so much extra time tending to it with her trusty watering can!
LEFT: Renoir's "Girl With Watering Can" RIGHT: The photograph it inspired: A shot of a small statue in my Mom's yard in Worthington, MA.
Renoir's On the Path: This one's got meditation/contemplation written all over it in my mind! Definitely a great piece to gaze upon while trying to figure out one's own path through the wilderness of life!
LEFT: Renoir's "On the Path" RIGHT: A photo not taken by me but of me. Taken by Fr. Marcel in Ellicott City, MD. I've often wondered if he was inspired by the same painting when he took this shot!
Kinkade's The Cross: I can sit staring into this one for hours. I can't find the words to properly describe the feelings this one summons. Between the intricate details and the use of light... it always leaves me awestruck!
TOP: Kinkade's "The Cross" BOTTOM: The photos it inspired: Both are taken in the Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Trumbull, CT.
Kinkade's Eternal Springtime: Definitely a favorite! I've always loved flower gardens... walking through them, sitting in them, photographing them, smelling them, you name it! I always hear the whispered invitation of the bench beckoning to "come, sit, reflect and enjoy the gifts that surround us." This one always brings to mind that we have to take the time out of life to smell the flowers, not just pass them by blindly. There's a scene in the movie "The Color Purple" where Shug Avery and Celie are walking through a field of purple flowers and Shug says something about how "it must piss God off when we walk by the color purple without noticing it." To me - in this painting - God is that bench, begging people to not walk blindly, but to notice Him and all He's given us!
LEFT: Kinkade's "Eternal Springtime" RIGHT: The photo it inspired: A weedy, road-side bench in Worthington, MA.
Van Gogh's Blossoming Almond Tree and Landscape Under a Stormy Sky: No particular reasons for these two other than they just appeal to me. They are both what I like to call "simply complex," LOL.
LEFT: Van Gogh's "Blossoming Almond Tree" RIGHT: The photo it inspired: A blooming Forsythia tree in Worthington, MA.
LEFT: Van Gogh's "Landscape Under a Stormy Sky" RIGHT: The photo it inspired: After the Storm, shot in Stratford, CT.
Monet's Bouquet of Sunflowers: I've always preferred Monet's Sunflowers over Van Gogh's. The colors are richer, the detail is more defined, and I also like the contrast between the yellow of the flowers and the red of the tablecloth. It's striking! And who knows -- the fact that the sunflowers in the painting were picked directly out of Monet's personal garden might have something to do with my preference as well. ;-)
LEFT: Monet's "Bouquet of Sunflowers" RIGHT: Another not taken by me but of me. Taken by my Mom. Me and my favorite posies!
Renoir's Two Girls in the Meadow (aka ...in the Field): Honestly, what is there about this painting not to love! The colors are magnificent; the scene is endearingly sweet and innocent! While the two girl's admire the bouquet of flowers they've picked, it's always reminded me of the much simpler time of childhood and of exploring/discovering nature for the first time!
ABOVE: Renoir's "Two Girls in the Meadow" No accompanying photo yet!
Munch's The Scream: OK, the deal with this one is... I'm a Stephen King fan. Have been for years. In a nut shell, this painting - to me - represents all that is creepy! It's fun! It's vibrant! It's haunting! It's psychologically chilling! I love it!!!
ABOVE: Munch's "The Scream" No accompanying photo yet! (Which is probably a good thing, LOL)
Vibert's The Marvelous Sauce: I was recently introduced to this wonderful painting in July 2017 as Fr. Marcel and I toured the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, NY. I fell in love with it instantly! The expressions on their faces! Their posture! The joy of cooking! The Cardinal's presentation of the Marvelous Sauce, his own recipe, his magnificent creation! How the Chef pleasantly accepts defeat, his expression admitting "Damn, it's even better than mine!" The details in the background capturing the chaos of a busy kitchen... the meats on the table, the overflowing basket and sack of vegetables on the floor. The gleaming brass pots surrounding the scene. The Chef's crumpled apron. The ladles on the wall. A playful work of art that brings to mind the busy kitchens of my childhood as I watched my Mom, or my grandparents, prepare a family feast!
TOP: Vibert's "The Marvelous Sauce" BOTTOM: The photos it inspired, a treasured candid moment captured in Hamburg, New York.