While meditating on nature and Van Gogh’s propensity to portray it, I thought his solitary Cypress tree in “Starry Night” needed a companion. The result was “Starry Cypresses,” and after painting looking quite different.
36″ x 45″ acrylic on canvas
on a MightyWood stretcher
This is obviously an “after” painting. I love doing Van Gogh pieces. The swirling sky alone makes it an adventure to paint. Mountains and hills are my life-long passion; I will always tend to create them. With Starry Cypresses, I took the liberty to add sweeping mountain slopes, an extra cypress, and more intense swirls in the sky. And instead of a night scene, I changed it to more of a dusk or dawn scene. In my mind the sun has just set behind the mountains and the villagers are settling in for the night. Dusk is a precious time; it is the last chance of a given day to go out a embrace the beauty of nature just before the darkness swallows it up.
The feel and depth generated gives the painting an interesting feel. Standing in front of it draws you in and places you in one of the humble cottages nestled in the hills. Unfortunately for this artist, I live in a flat terrain. There are forests with pine and oak, and there are swamps, but in my area there are no hills.
Here is the original by Vincent van Gogh called “Starry Night.” It is one of his most famous paintings from 1889. The view of the scene has been identified as being from his bedroom window, looking east.
Through the iron-barred window,” he wrote to his brother, Theo, around 23 May 1889, “I can see an enclosed square of wheat . . . above which, in the morning, I watch the sun rise in all its glory.
So I did it again, Van Gogh was facing east, my painting faces west.