IMG_0313the-old-guitarist FullSizeRender


December 14, 2015
Dear Professor Ugoretz,
I hope my project doesn’t confuse you too much. Allow me to explain:
I was on the subway with a friend—a couple of weeks after Michael Grohman came to visit—when I noticed a man sleeping on the opposite side of the subway car. The manner in which he was sleeping immediately reminded me of Picasso’s The Old Guitarist. I told my friend just that but she wasn’t familiar with the painting. And so I took out my phone and attempted to capture the image of this man. Somehow I successfully took a photo of him because a moment later the train stopped, jolting the man awake. At the time, I thought of how Mr. Grohman emphasized the capturing of a fleeting moment. It made me even more proud of my photo. I really do think the image bares a striking resemblance to the haunted old guitarist painted in shades of blue. I hope you do, too. Anyways, when you discussed our options for the final project in class, I immediately knew I wanted to do a painting. I’ve only ever painted in my high school art class. It was something I really enjoyed doing. And so this was an excuse for me to buy some art supplies. First, I picked a theme: the line between being inspired by a work of art and imitating a work of art. I considered painting my own version of a very famous work, but then I remembered the photo I took on the subway. I would paint the man in this photo possibly in a blue palette, but I would use additional colors and a completely different brush technique. Ultimately, my painting is influenced by a photograph—but that photograph was captured solely because I believed it imitated a painting. Is my work completely unique? Or is it an imitation? This is the theme I wanted to consider. And I used the art of fleeting photography discussed by Mr. Grohman and Picasso’s The Old Guitarist to do so. In conclusion, I must assert that I thoroughly enjoyed this project. I was always quite fond of that photo, and using it for this project enhanced how special it is to me. Also, I haven’t painted a many months…this project reminded me of the deep thinking involved in this form of art. There are layers of paint on the canvas because I
was always going back and forth about what technique I wanted to use. In the end, I chose to do quick brush strokes and to blend the paint on the canvas. To be honest, I’m not quite satisfied with the final product. Perhaps I’ll go back into the painting and make some changes. I’ll keep you updated.

Best Regards,
Maryam Choudhary