What led to this post was a quick read of Jay’s comment the other day on the differing perceptions between an actual painting and the computer screen version of the image. A revelation occurred when I had a showing of my paintings at an arts fair recently: A lot of people responded very positively to the works upon physically looking at the works (these were the same people who had already seen it on the computer screens before and had not thought too much about it). They said that their feelings towards the subject/painting changed when they looked at the painting life-size.  


‘Born!’, Oil paint on gessoed MDF, 48″ X 48″. Sunil Gangadharan

I have known this for some time and I am not too sure what solutions are out there that bridges the chasm between real size and the viewers perception on looking at an image of the painting on the computer screen. This problem will be exacerbated even more as we move to the digital realm (some galleries/exhibitions are now asking artists to submit their artworks via the internet).
I feel a time has come where we need to think of a commonly accepted convention that will allow a ‘size’ perception to be automatically factored when they look at artwork. I do not have too many ideas on this subject and the only ones I could come up with are as follows:

– Photograph the artwork in relation to size of a known entity (like a human being)

– Photograph the artwork in the usual way and then add another photo of the artwork in a gallery setting where the roof / floor of the space that accommodates the art is shown in a relative sense (not very practical at home, but could be simulated in a ‘clean studio’)

– Develop a computer program that will help automatically compare the artwork against known standards (like a human being or the Eiffel Tower) – of course this requires the writing of software – (maybe petition Google to create one for struggling artists trying to show their works online).

Your thoughts and ideas are most appreciated..


Our son next to the painting of his.