Random Musing No. 1

August 4, 2018

The human eye has a range of 120°, mostly peripheral vision, compared to the camera’s typical 200° or more. That is why the figures sometimes seem distorted at the edges of a photograph. We make up for this seeming deficit by moving our focus (in movements called “saccades”) around a scene to build up a gestalt awareness of its appearance.
A painting, curated by human intelligence, is superior in every respect to a photograph, except for how long it takes to make it. If cameras took three hours to create the exact same image as they do now in a split second, there would be no question as to which medium people would choose when they needed an image recorded.

This one requires some explanation. First of all, several years ago I did a small painting of Gillette Stadium, which I gave to a Patriots fan friend. Here it is, from 2009:

Gillette Stadium

The other day, September 4th to be precise,  I decided to stop off at the stadium and do another painting. As I was working a TV reporter with a cameraman came up and started to interview me. It took me a while to clue in to the fact that he was there to interview Patriots fans who were excited about the Brady decision. So I found myself saying things like, “Go Pats!” and “Free… uh… uh…” [him (in a whisper): “Tom Brady”] “Yeah! Free Tom Brady!” He asked me why I liked Gillette Stadium and I said, “It’s actually kind of an ugly building, but it serves a purpose. It’s sort of a temple to sport.” “He said, “‘Temple to sport’… hmmm, I like that… maybe I’ll use that…” He said, “Can you put me in your painting?” and I said, “Sure!” He posed for about five minutes, I got him in (incidentally wrecking the painting, in my opinion) and I sent him an email with the pic.

Live at Gillette Stadium, I'm Steve Cooper, Channel 7 News

Live at Gillette Stadium, I’m Steve Cooper, Channel 7 News

Sure enough, that night there I was on TV!

I went back a few days later and did a larger, much better painting.

Gillette Stadium