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.
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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