Looking at pictures can be enjoyable, exciting or moving. Some pictures are easily appreciated at first glance, but others - often the most rewarding - require some explanation before they can be fully understood. This clearly written and enjoyable book is intended to increase pleasure and stimulate thought. It tackles many aspects of looking at paintings as well. Starting with familiar ideas, Dr Susan Woodford moves on to explore subtler, less obvious concepts. For example, she shows how paintings can be appreciated as patterns on a flat surface emotional effect; how ordinary objects can conceal hidden meanings and how knowledge of tradition improves our understanding of revolutionary works.
Table of Contents
1. Ways of looking at pictures; 2. Landscape and seascape; 3. Portraits; 4. Everyday life and everyday things: genre and still life; 5. History and mythology; 6. Religious images; 7. Pictures as decorations on flat surfaces; 8. Tradition; 9. Considerations of design and organisation; 10. Problems in the depiction of space; 11. An approach to stylistic analysis: renaissance and baroque contrasted; 12. Hidden meanings; 13. Quality; Index.