Aide Memoirs 

The painting with light exhibition put paid to all my misconceptions that the Pre-Raphaelites did not paint from photographs…they sure did!! Used photos as aide memoirs, obviously there was en plein air painting as well as lots of staged painting from life. Now I know how scenes from Shakespeare, the Bible, Tennyson and so many poems were painted! …from staged re-enactments. It’s so enlightening to unveil the mystery behind paintings!  One painting, probably titled the Dissolution...(should have noted down title and artist) took 26 years to complete!!! Painting with light showed not just the completed paintings but the studies and influences that led to completion. It is sooo enlightening and you learn so much as though you were there in the 19th century peeking over the shoulders of Dante Gabriel Rossetti as he painted Mariana or peeking as Julia Margaret Cameron created multiple photo gravures on paper…watching as Thomas Frederick Goddall painted The Bow Net using a photograph (platinum print) he created with Peter Henry Emerson titled Setting the Bow Net, as an aide memoir. 

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