I painted this for a former colleague of mine whose role was website Community Manager.
We would have lots of fun referring to her as the Community Crusader :)
tribute to Vermeer
This is a small piece (12cmx15cm) that I created to be an element of a larger work which is an interpretation of Johannes Vermeer's masterpiece Girl With A Pearl Earring.
As I tend to use a lot of symbology in my works I wanted to be sure to reference Vermeer and his original master work in some way other than the very obvious direct interpretation - this piece appears as a tattoo on the girl.
Rather than being too obscure, I chose to use imagery that symbolises Vermeer's Dutch heritage. For this reason I chose to use the blue and whites of the beautiful Delftware - the pottery created in the Delft region of Holland from the 16th century onwards. It just so happens that Vermeer himself lived in the Delft region for some time during his life, so my colour choice seemed not only fitting, but necessary.
In representing Holland (The Netherlands), I also chose to use imagery that I remember very clearly from my childhood as "all the things that you find in Holland". These being windmills, clogs and tulips. I also remember dikes very clearly, thanks to that clever little storybook boy who put his finger into the hole and saved his town. However,not wanting to overdo things, the dike didn't make an appearance in this design.
My last symbolic reference is to Vermeer's original painting itself. The girl in the painting wears a pearl earring which is placed very cleverly as the focal point of the work. Not only is it the focal point of the painting, Vermeer found it important enough to also draw attention to it in the title of the work.
For my painting I've removed the pearl earring -- most likely not just precious but also quite fashionable in the Baroque period -- and replaced it with something a little more contemporary. However, it was still very important to me to reference the original jewel, so you'll find it here, snugly bedded into it's oyster shell.