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Artwork of the Week2022-03-29T12:02:05+11:00

Artwork of the Week

Artwork of the Week is a series of weekly emails we send of public domain art pieces curated by our team for you. Handpicked by PosterFactory these artworks are specifically chosen to print on our premium papers to produce stunning art prints with exceptional image reproduction.

The Song of the Lark - Jules Adolphe Breton
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The French 1884 oil on canvas painting The Song of the Lark by Jules-Adolphe Breton grasps a viewer’s attention. It draws an observer in by its intense but subtle subject matter and luminous sun background. Without the incandescent sun and the thoughtful look of the young woman, it would just be a bland earth-toned farm landscape. However, Breton understood what to add to his painting to give it a drama that would instantly grab an onlooker’s interest.

A 19th-century French Naturalist painter whose paintings are heavily influenced by the French countryside and his absorption of traditional painting methods helped make Jules Breton one of the primary transmitters of the beauty and idyllic vision of rural existence.

Woman at Her Toilette - Berthe Morisot
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The woman at Her Toilette attempts to capture the essence of modern life in summary, understated terms. The painting also moves discreetly into the female eroticism explored by Edgar Degas, Édouard Manet, and Pierre-Auguste Renoir but seldom broached at this time by women artists. Rendered with soft, feathery brushstrokes in nuanced shades of lavender, pink, blue, white, and grey, the composition resembles a visual tone poem, orchestrated with such perfumed and rarified motifs as brushed blonde hair, satins, powder puffs, and flower petals. The artist even signed her name along the bottom of the mirror to suggest that the image in her painting is as brief as a silvery reflection.

She is one of the most influential painters of the French Impressionist school of art. In 1864, Morisot exhibited in the highly esteemed Salon de Paris for the first time. Her delicate and subtle style won her the respect and praise of her colleagues, but she was denied international recognition until long after her death.

The Bedroom - Vincent van Gogh
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While he was in Arles, Van Gogh painted his bedroom in the Yellow House. He prepared the room himself with simple furniture and his work on the wall. The bright colours express absolute ‘repose’ or ‘sleep’. Meanwhile, the odd angle of the rear wall is not a mistake on Van Gogh’s part – the corner was skewed. Van Gogh was very pleased with the painting: ‘When I saw my canvases again after my illness, what seemed to be the best was the bedroom.’

Vincent Willem van Gogh was a Dutch Post-Impressionist painter who posthumously became one of the most famous and influential figures in Western art history. He created about 2,100 artworks in a decade, including around 860 oil paintings, most of which date from the last two years of his life.

Equivalent Spiritual America - Alfred Stieglitz
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This geometric abstract photo of a horse is, in fact, an ironic commentary to America’s materialist culture on the verge of national bankruptcy. In the decade leading up to the Great Depression, Stieglitz produced this photo of a harnessed castrated horse as a sample of America’s potential restrained by culture.

Founder of the photo-secessionist and pictorialist photography movements in the United States, Alfred Stieglitz was a pioneer photographer and avid promoter of the modern arts. With a career lasting over 50 years, Stieglitz refused to sell his photographs and instead made money through awards, exhibitions, and as a writer of the art.

View of Cotopaxi - Frederic Edwin Church
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Cotopaxi is an active volcano in the Andes, on Ecuador’s side. Inspired by the German naturalist Alexander von Humboldt’s, Frederic travelled to South America to study the tropical landscapes. His fascination with the Andes led to ten finished paintings of the Ecuadorian volcano.

Frederic E. Church was an American landscape painter best known for his large landscape paintings portraying mountains, waterfalls, and sunsets. As a romantic, Frederic depicted nature in idealized scenes of richness and beauty, emphasizing its grand scale.

Water Lilies - Claude Monet
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“One instant, one aspect of nature contains it all.”

That’s how Monet referred to the series of his late masterpieces produced at his home — the famous water landscapes from his Giverny gardens. Monet’s late work between 1897 and his death in 1926 had a single, timeless motif, water lilies.

Claude Monet was the leader of the French Impressionist movement. Interested in painting in the open air and capturing natural light, Monet would later bring the technique to one of its most famous pinnacles — his series paintings. Monet would paint the same subject at different times, capturing the different colours and tones.

Near Tivoli - Thomas Jones
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Tivoli is a town in Lazio, central Italy. About 30 km from Rome, this commune is known for its Villas — Hadrian’s Villa and Villa d’Este — and its history, including the ruins of Roman aqueducts, castles, and churches. This watercolour painting gives us a peek at this fascinating Italian landscape.

Pupil of Richard Wilson, Thomas Jones was a Welsh landscape painter. Best known in his lifetime by painting Welsh and Italian landscapes, Jones became famous only in the 20th century when some of his unconventional paintings were found.

Equivalent - Alfred Stieglitz
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We haven’t promoted many photographers here. While this looks like a charcoal drawing or a watercolour painting, this is a photograph. Taken by the American artist Alfred Stieglitz in 1926, this art piece depicts a stratus cloud. Stieglitz achieves a nearly abstract print of darks and lights by tilting his camera upwards while exposing the film to the light.

Founder of the photo-secessionist and pictorialist photography movements in the United States, Alfred Stieglitz was a pioneer photographer and avid promoter of the modern arts. With a career lasting over 50 years, Stieglitz refused to sell his photographs and instead made money through awards, exhibitions, and as a writer of the art.

The Cats’ Rendezvous - Édouard Manet
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This crayon lithograph depicts a black cat and a white cat on a rooftop under a moonlit sky. This 19th-century print showcases the use of positive and negative space, almost illustrating a Yin Yang — a Chinese philosophy of opposite energies that are complementary. This clash of light and dark when well planned creates a sense of balance instead of chaos.

Édouard Manet was one of the first artists to paint ‘modern life’ and an influential figure in the artistic shift from realism to impressionism. Manet was brought up in an upper-class household but led a bohemian life — causing frequent scandals amongst refined French society.

Manet has long been associated with the Impressionists; but recently, critics have acknowledged he also studied and applied techniques from French realism and naturalism as well as 17th-century Spanish painting.

Young Bull - Albrecht Durer
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This cross-hatched study of a young bull was one of Dürer’s early works. Likely a study from nature, the sketchy lines around the animal’s right hind foot, back, muzzle, and horns reveal that the artist initially drew the bull in a slightly different position, with his mouth open but later changed to its final version.

Dürer was an influential German painter, printmaker, and theorist of the German Renaissance who established a reputation across Europe in his early ages through his woodcut work. Connected with the major Italian artists of his time, such as Raphael, Bellini, and da Vinci, Dürer was introduced to classical motifs that helped him secure his reputation as one of the most important figures of the Northern Renaissance.

Statue of the Madonna in the Mountains - Caspar David Friedrich
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“Not only what he sees before him, but also what he sees within him.” This is what Caspar David Friedrich said to convey this beautiful artwork’s message. Subtly graded shades of grey wash depict a pilgrim praying at the base of Madonna’s statue on a German mountain. This is a perfect example of a German Romantic landscape painting.

Caspar David Friedrich was one of the most prominent German Romantic landscape painters of the 19th century. Known for his landscapes, like the “Statue of the Madonna in the Mountains”, his paintings usually contemplates silhouetted figures, nature, with more subjective and emotional response to nature than classical art.

Olive Trees, Corfu - John Singer Sargent
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This vibrant landscape is not a traditional Sargent portrait but it truly shows he was a master of his craft. Made in 1909, the chosen medium for this painting was watercolour and opaque watercolour with scraping and wax resist over graphite on ivory wove paper.

One of the most sought-after portraitists of his era, John Sargent was known for his powerful and vibrant portraits — and yet he excelled in a variety of genres like watercolours, landscapes, just like this painting. His ability to straddle the line between tradition and the avant-garde highly impressed his audience and collectors.

For to Be a Farmer's Boy - Winslow Homer
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“Though little, I’ll work as hard as a Turk, / If you’ll give me employ /To plough and sow, and reap and mow, / And be a farmer’s boy.” The name of Winslow Homer’s painting was derived from this Old English song. A watercolour depiction of a young boy picking pumpkins on a glowing orange sunset has faded over time due to the use of fugitive pigments — pigments that shift in colour or fade due to a chemical change, especially ones that quickly lose colour upon exposure to light.

Homer was an American landscape painter and printmaker, mostly known for his marine oil paintings. While he began his career as a commercial illustrator, he painted watercolour landscapes during his vacations — a technique he continued to deploy as sketches for his mature oil work. Homer became notorious for his distinct oil paintings and various subject matters, reaching financial stability right before passing in 1910.

Lotus Flowers - Ogawa Kazumasa
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The original version of Lotus Flowers appears in the coloured photography album called “Some Japanese Flowers,” which features a collection of Ogawa’s work. The image subsequently appeared in “Japan,” published in 1897 and contains contributions from a collection of Japanese authorities and scholars. The close-up flowers are delicately hand-painted to bring out the fragile, fleeting beauty of lotus flowers, while the subtle pinks and greens suggest a definite Art Nouveau influence.

Ogawa Kazumasa (also known as Ogawa Kazuma or Ogawa Isshin) was a Japanese printer, photographer and publisher who pioneered photomechanical printing and photography. He was born in Saitama before moving to Tokyo to improve his (already excellent) English and then moving to Boston.

Ogawa moved back to Japan in 1884 and founded a dry photographic plate manufacturing company, and set up the country’s first collotype business. Ogawa was also a founding member of the Japan Photographic Society and was commissioned to take 100 photos of Tokyo’s most attractive Geisha in 1891.

Sitting Cat - Julie de Graag
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Who doesn’t love cats? Beautiful, intelligent, and loving creatures that manage to preserve an aura of mystery, aloofness and independence. This highly stylised drawing features a ginger and white cat with a wonderful, tiger-like pattern on its fur, mirrored on both sides of its body just like a butterfly’s wings.

Owners who get to know their cats eventually distinguish exactly these kinds of symmetrical markings that, to a casual viewer, look random — but here they are made prominent for everyone to appreciate.

De Graag’s cat sits in a very formal pose with its tail over two primly placed front paws — its head bowed just enough suggest that it’s hoping for a pat from its owner, but won’t beg for attention if it’s not forthcoming. How very cat-like!

Julie de Graag was a Dutch artist, illustrator and painter who trained at the The Hague’s Royal Academy of Art and became the protégé of HP Bremmer, a famous Dutch painter, teacher and art critic. She was a prolific artist but, as her home burned down in 1908, much of her work has been lost.
De Graag suffered from mental and physical illness throughout her life and both deteriorated in the early 1920s — the results of which were reflected in her work. Julie de Graag tragically took her own life at just 46 years old, leaving us with some beautifully stylised animal studies, flowers, portraits, and wood cuts by which to remember her.

The Red Kangaroo - Macropus Rufus - Charles D'Orbigny
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It’s hard to overstate how ground-breaking this illustration would have appeared to the first Europeans that viewed it. Few had seen a Kangaroo or any kind of marsupial before. But it was drawings like this that introduced new worlds and wonders to the Northern Hemisphere. Today, we can look at the group of Kangaroos in d’Orbigny’s illustration and see the close family bonds, subtle social dynamics and tenderness that exist between these wonderful animals.

Charles Henry Dessalines d’Orbigny was a French geologist and botanist. He was the younger brother of Alcide d’Orbingny, a famous explorer of South America and a renowned French naturalist. Working at Paris’ National Museum of Natural History, d’Orbigny identified and catalogued many of the flowers and plants returned that his brother brought home from his adventures. In 1834, he succeeded Louis Cordier as the museum’s principal geologist. He continued to work there until illness forced him to retire three decades later.

Small Leaping Horses - Franz Marc
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During his lifetime, Franz Marc was celebrated for his use of colour. So when he removes it from his work — as he’s done here — he’s definitely trying to communicate a message. With all colour gone, there’s something primaeval about the painting, recalling a drawing on a cave wall and a more innocent (or a less materialistic) time. It also reminds us of Picasso’s final works.

This primal style also links back to Marc’s view that animals retain an innocence that humanity has now lost. Later in his career, Marc changed his mind on this point and saw all creation as flawed — even ugly. With no whites in their eyes, these horses may well be the unconscious start of those feelings and Marc’s ultimate wish for the coming war to purify the world through destruction and then rebirth.

Franz Marc was a German painter and print-maker who, despite dying at just 36, had an incredible influence on Expressionism. During his life, he explored naturalism, realism, symbolism and abstraction. He founded a Der Blaue Reiter, a pioneering German Expressionist movement that focused on art’s spiritual value and impact. Towards the end of his life, as the First World War loomed, Marc’s painting began to reflect his anxiety and the uncertain fate that awaited Europe. Tragically, Marc died fighting as a cavalryman in WWI at the Battle of Verdun on March 4, 1916.

Fruit - William Morris
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‘Fruit’ is one of William Morris’ most popular designs and still furnishes the walls of many homes worldwide. A beautiful wallpaper, ‘Fruit’ also makes a stunning framed print, bringing rich citrus colours and lush green leaves to any room.

The pomegranates, which are repeated regularly in the print, would have been considered particularly exotic and, like the pineapples that were so in vogue during Morris’ era, conveyed wealth, status and power.

Our version of ‘Fruit’ is printed on a black background, but Morris produced the same design on green, pink, brown, light grey or navy backgrounds too.

An English gentleman, William Morris trained as a priest and then an architect but ultimately found his vocation as a painter, designer and writer. He is often considered to be the founder of the Arts and Crafts Movement, which spanned painting, drawing, craft, philosophy and literature.

The movement’s socialist utopia (which Morris wrote about in his Novel, News From Nowhere) embraced an idealised Medieval time where people created art and craft from an inner calling and the desire to build friendships and communities.

Today, the Arts and Crafts movement is seen as a reaction to and a retreat from an increasingly industrialised and commercialised world. Morris’ designs are still popular today and can be found on wallpapers, upholstery and clothing — and even screensavers and phone covers (we’re not sure how he would feel about the latter two!)

Colombes et lis, étoffe imprimée - Maurice Pillard Verneuil
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Geometric and precise, Colombes et lis (which translates as doves and lilies) is one of Verneuil’s most recognisable and loved works. Search for it online and you’ll find the design on t-shirts, duvet covers, exercise books, and tote bags. Take a moment to appreciate that each bird is positioned at a slightly different angle. This creates a sense of movement, motion and flight — and showcases the artist’s light touch and skilful hand. A statement piece for any wall, the doves seem almost to dance against the backdrop of beautiful yellows, greens and gold — bringing a touch of the orient into our lives.

Verneuil was born in Saint-Quentin, France. He was heavily influenced by Japanese art and, in 1923, travelled with his wife to Cambodia, Indonesia, and Japan. Throughout his life, his art was as inspired by nature — and a love of the sea — and, today, he is celebrated for his contributions to the Art Deco and Art Nouveau movements. Drawing on the style and tradition of William Morris, Verneuil’s works are precise and geometric — and have an almost mathematical beauty.

Lemon Citrus Limonium - Charles d'Orbigny Verneuil
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Lemon / Citrus Limonium is an illustration taken from d’Orbigny’s ground-breaking Dictionnaire Universel d’Histoire Naturelle. Widely regarded as one of the 19th Century’s greatest Natural History encyclopaedias, the book features a stunning collection of hand-coloured plates. D’Orbigny created many of these images himself and also invited some of the most famous French artists of the time to contribute. The beauty and detail of the images are still appreciated today, transcending the boundaries between art and science — and academia and popular culture — in ways that d’Orbigny would not have imagined possible.

Charles Henry Dessalines d’Orbigny was a French geologist and botanist. He was the younger brother of Alcide d’Orbingny, a famous explorer of South America and a renowned French naturalist. Working at Paris’ National Museum of Natural History, d’Orbigny identified and catalogued many of the flowers and plants returned that his brother brought home from his adventures. In 1834, he succeeded Louis Cordier as the museum’s principal geologist. He continued to work there until illness forced him to retire three decades later.

Aquarell Fuenffarbendruck - Wassily Kandinsky
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Stare into this Kandinsky work for just a few seconds and get lost in mystery and reflection. Kandinsky’s abstracted art allows the viewer to complete the painting in their own minds; lending meaning to the ambiguous shapes, colours and forms to complete the story that it’s telling. The beauty of this work — which is taken from Maler des Expressionismus : 15 Farbdruck — is that it is entirely open to personal interpretation. We see flowers and fruits; a poppy at the bottom of the canvas, an apple at the top with a scattering of apricots, blueberries and strawberries. But what do you see? Print it, frame it, put it on a wall in your home and start a conversation that will never get old.

Wassily Kandinsky pioneered modern abstract art — and he took the genre to entirely new levels. His mastery of colour and form created some of the most iconic works of the last century. Something in the way that Kandinsky creates art makes it almost musical, almost sonic, stirring the viewer like a beautiful piece of music. Kandinsky believed that abstract art offers us the chance to interpret and understand the world around us. He also had a passionate conviction that abstract art could lead to spiritual enlightenment. Kandinsky’s work and ideas inspired many artists, from his Bauhaus students to the post-WW2 Abstract Expressionists.

Tropical Forest with Monkeys - Henri Rousseau
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Tropical Forest with Monkeys is a superb example of Primitivism, a movement that appreciated and appropriated what was referred to at the time as “primitive” art. For Primitivists, this basically meant any art created outside Europe. As is typical with Primitivist art, Tropical Forest with Monkeys uses simple, bold shapes and more abstracted forms than traditional European art. Tropical Forest with Monkeys is one of Rousseau’s final paintings, showcasing his — by now — signature lush, exotic, verdurous landscapes. Many critics suggest that the monkeys in the background are holding sticks. We like to think that they are dancing or playing around — enjoying a simple life that’s far removed from the modern urban “jungle” that was Rousseau’s Paris.

Henri Rousseau only became a full-time artist when he turned 49. Before that, he had worked for the Paris customs office. Self-taught, his works were initially dismissed by critics but found favour amongst modernists like Picasso and Kandinsky. These artists embraced Rousseau’s works precisely because of the incorrect proportions, one-point perspective and sometimes unnatural colours that had led to their dismissal by the more conservative parts of Paris’ art establishment. Today Rousseau is one of the most respected post-impressionists and held up as one of the best examples of the Primitivism movement.

Caryatid - Amedeo Modigliani
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A caryatid is a sculpted female figure that serves as an architectural support — usually taking the place of a column or a pillar. The Greek term karyatides literally means “maidens of Karyai”, an ancient town on the Peloponnese peninsular. It was a style that seemed to captivate Modigliani as he created more than 70 caryatid-inspired works. Modigliani was also influenced by African art, as can clearly be seen in this work.

Creating a portrait that draws so heavily on the caryatid motif also causes us to think about the contrasting properties of flesh and stone — living and inanimate, yielding and resolute, warm and cold, fleeting and immutable. These themes would have been at the forefront of Modigliani’s mind and frequently surface in his work.

Central to the Ecole de Paris, Modigliani’s portraits convey his subjects’ personalities, while his trademark stylisation and use of recurring motifs — long necks and almond-shaped eyes — lends them uniformity. Modigliani’s portraiture also serves as a vital art history record, comprising a gallery of major figures from the Ecole de Paris circle. Modigliani’s portraits uniquely reveal the sitter’s inner life — often revealing a sense of melancholy through elongated proportions and mask-like faces.

Nocturne: Blue and Gold—Southampton Water - James McNeill Whistler
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This painting marks a radical departure for Whistler, as it takes his use of abstraction to a new level. Unlike his earlier marine paintings, there is hardly any light on the canvas, except for the low sun (or perhaps it’s the moon?).

Either way, to us, the painting has many qualities of a JMW Turner work, as the distant ships are not much more than blurred lines lost in dark, murky shadows. Spend some time reflecting on this work, and you’ll start to pick out more glimmers of distant light — perhaps on the ships or in the windows of the distant buildings lining the shore, and then reflected in back in the waters.

James McNeill Whistler was one of the most significant figures in modern art and often described as an early Post-Impressionist. He’s often celebrated for his innovative painting style and eccentric personality. He was known to have verbal and legal arguments with art critics and dealers — anyone, in fact, that didn’t appreciate his work. His paintings, etchings, and pastels epitomise the notion of creating “art for art’s sake,” a philosophy celebrated by Whistler and others in the Aesthetic movement.

Two Women on the Shore - Edvard Munch
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Edvard Munch’s painting looks simple enough at first glance. A young veiled woman stares out to sea — perhaps she’s a bride waiting for her husband to return. But who is the figure clad in black sat next to her?

Most art critics agree that it’s the woman’s future self — a widow — mourning her husband. For that reason, the painting is often considered to symbolise the fleeting nature of love, the shortness of life, and our inability to see our future. Munch leaves us to ponder whether it’s better not to know what fate has in store. And the painting asks us whether that very ignorance and innocence is what ultimately makes us human.

Edvard Munch was a prolific yet perpetually troubled artist preoccupied with the darker side of human existence such as mortality and illness — and also desire and religion. He expressed these obsessions through works of intense colour, semi-abstraction, and mysterious subject matter, which he most famously expressed in The Scream. As French Impressionism gained popularity, Munch took up the more graphic, symbolist style of Paul Gauguin. Munch rose to be one of the most controversial and renowned artists of his generation.

Asakusa Rice Fields and Torinomachi Festival - Utagawa Hiroshige
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This scene is from Hiroshige’s important series One Hundred Famous Views of Edo, capturing well-known locations across Japan’s new capital. This print showcases how Hiroshige so successfully combined European and Japanese influences. While his earlier images used traditional bird’s eye views that were popular in Japanese art, Asakusa Rice Fields and Torinomachi Festival uses a central perspective to create a sense of depth.

The portrait composition of the piece allows us to step into the scene, following the cat’s gaze out into the fields, past the houses and to the mountains in the distance. That cat is probably watching the distant birds too or maybe waiting for its owner to return home.

Known as the last great master in Japanese traditional woodblock printing, Utagawa Hiroshige (1857) was fascinated by the landscape of his beloved country. Hiroshige’s prints celebrate everyday life in the late Edo period, in which travel and entertainment became more widely available to the middle-class, and presented a vision of the country in which the changing of the seasons, and the associated festivities, were central.

Hiroshige’s art was popular at home and with European artists — particularly within the Art Nouveau movement.

Evening Snow on a Floss Shaper - Suzuki Harunobu
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The famous series Eight Views of the Parlour to which this work belongs was produced in 1766, around the emergence of full-colour prints in Japan. The series contains eight prints housed together in a decorative wrapper — all of which are now in the Chicago Art Institute’s collection.

These different scenes present visual puns based on the well-known themes of the Xiao and Xiang Rivers in China — each of which has its own poetic title. For Evening Snow, Suzuki Harunobu depicted silk floss as snow and the floss shaper as the mountain rather than showing snow-covered hills.

Such witty visual riddles and puns would have been appreciated by the audience of these prints — wealthy, well-educated townsmen who participated in poetry circles. One such figure was Ōkubo Jinshirō Tadanobu, whose pseudonym was Kyosen.

It is thought that he produced this set, engaging Harunobu’s services as well as those of the printer. In fact, this image contains Kyosen’s handwritten signature, leading scholars to believe that the Art Institute’s set is the first edition. Sets with Harunobu’s signature exist in other collections.

The Great Wave - Katsushika Hokusai
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Katsushika Hokusai’s celebrated series, Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji (Fugaku sanjûrokkei), was started in 1830, when the artist was an incredible 70 years old. It established the popularity of landscape prints, which continues to this day. Perhaps most striking about the series is Hokusai’s copious use of the newly affordable Berlin blue pigment, featured in many of the compositions — adding a new colour and tone to the sky and water. Mount Fuji is the hero in each scene, viewed in the distance or up close, during various weather conditions and seasons, and from all directions.

The most famous image from the set is the “Great Wave” (Kanagawa oki nami ura), in which a tiny Mount Fuji can be seen under far away under the crest of a giant wave.

Hokusai is widely recognised as one of Japan’s greatest artists, having modernised traditional print styles through his innovations in subject and composition. His work celebrated Japan as a unified nation, depicting a diversity of landscapes and activities linked by shared symbols and stories.

Hokusai introduced European perspective to Japanese printmaking. He used various framing mechanisms to emphasise these focal points and create depth in his images. While we’re used to seeing prints arranged in this way, the technique was unprecedented in Hokusai’s day, and it was due to his influence it became widespread in Japanese printmaking.

Poppy Field - Claude Monet
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In July 1890, Claude Monet began four almost identically scaled canvases showing poppy fields near his home in Giverny. Although he did not consider these to be a series, the works show his growing interest in developing several canvases at once. They also demonstrate a far more homogeneous touch than the freely brushed landscapes of his earlier career, with surfaces that have a softened tapestry-like feel.

Claude Monet was the leader of the French Impressionist movement, literally giving the movement its name. As an inspirational talent and personality, he was crucial in bringing its adherents together. Interested in painting in the open air and capturing natural light, Monet would later bring the technique to one of its most famous pinnacles — his series paintings. Monet would paint the same subject at different times of the day, capturing the different colours and tones.

In his later years, Monet became increasingly sensitive to the decorative qualities of colour and form. He began to apply paint in smaller strokes, building it up in broad fields of colour. The effects that he achieved represent a remarkable advance towards abstraction and modern painting focused purely on surface effects.

Gustave Caillebotte Paris Street Rainy Day
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Painted just minutes away from the Saint-Lazare train station, this work represents the changing urban landscape of late nineteenth-century Paris. Caillebotte strikingly captures a vast, stark modernity, complete with life-size figures strolling in the foreground and wearing the latest fashions.

The painting’s highly crafted surface, rigorous perspective, and grand scale pleased Parisian audiences accustomed to the academic aesthetic of the official Salon. By contrast, its asymmetrical composition, unusually cropped forms, rain-washed mood, and candidly contemporary subject stimulated a more radical sensibility. For these reasons, the painting dominated the celebrated Impressionist exhibition of 1877 and is considered the artist’s masterpiece.

Even as late as the 1950s, Gustave Caillebotte was relatively unknown despite achieving much in Paris during the height of the Impressionist movement. Like many of his fellow avant-garde artists, he was fascinated by the impact of industrialisation and modernisation on Paris and its inhabitants. Caillebotte also played a critical role as a major source of patronage and financial support for artists such as Monet, Renoir, and Pissarro, who — at that time — were still trying to attract attention and achieve more widespread success.

An April Shower - William Turner
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This is one of Turner’s boldest pieces. It is ambitious in scale and stands apart from its contemporaries in its simplicity, strength and colour. Inspired by J.M.W. Turner’s picturesque views of 1790s landscapes, Turner foregrounds the importance of man’s harmony with the natural world. Using a sweeping rainbow, he also underscores the importance he places on family while reconnecting us with its old testament meaning and symbolism.

William Turner was an English painter who specialised in watercolour landscapes. He is often known as William Turner of Oxford or just Turner of Oxford to distinguish him from his contemporary, J.M.W. Turner (who also known as William). He belongs to the second generation of English watercolour painters, known for their romantic use of nature to foreground values and moral beliefs.

Many of Turner’s paintings depicted the countryside around Oxford. One of his best-known pictures is a view of the city of Oxford from Hinksey Hill. His paintings are held in national and international collections, for example, at the Tate Gallery (London, UK), the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York City, US) and the Dunedin Public Art Gallery (New Zealand).

Ballet at the Paris Opera - Edgar Degas
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Edgar Degas is recognised as one of the nineteenth century’s most innovative artists. He often combined traditional techniques in unorthodox ways. For example, in Ballet at the Paris Opéra, the artist used the monotype technique — made by drawing on glass or plate and pressing the drawing by hand onto a sheet of absorbent paper.

Degas combines his monotype print with delicate pastel work to accentuate the dancers’ ethereal costumes. He also sought to establish a beautiful, subtle contrast between them, the scenery, members of the orchestra and the dark, heavy double basses.

Born into a wealthy Franco-Italian family, Degas was encouraged to pursue his artistic talent from an early age. An impressionist through and through, Degas once said, “A painting requires a little mystery, some vagueness, some fantasy.”

Like many Impressionists, Degas was significantly influenced by Japanese prints, which suggested novel approaches to composition. He captured strange postures from unusual angles under artificial light. He rejected the academic ideal of the mythical or historical subject. Instead, he was inspired by figures in modern situations, such as at the ballet.

Taking to the Air and Sea to Study Ocean Eddies - NASA
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Celebrate International Space Exploration Day with this stunning image from NASA. Using scientific instruments aboard a self-propelled ocean glider and several aeroplanes, this NASA mission will deploy a suite of water- and air-borne instruments to show what’s happening just below the ocean’s surface. The full-fledged field campaign will begin in October 2021, with the aircraft based out of NASA’s Ames Research Center.

NASA hopes to learn more about small-scale movements of ocean water, such as eddies. These whirlpools span about 6.2 miles or ten kilometres, slowly moving ocean water in a swirling pattern. Scientists think that these eddies play an essential role in transferring heat from the surface to the ocean layers below and vice versa. The eddies may play a role in the exchange of heat, gases and nutrients between the ocean and Earth’s atmosphere. Understanding these small-scale eddies will help scientists better understand how Earth’s oceans slow down global climate change.

In this image, sub-mesoscale ocean dynamics, like eddies and small currents, are responsible for the swirling pattern of these phytoplankton blooms (shown in green and light blue) in the South Atlantic Ocean on Jan. 5, 2021.

Since the dawn of the Space Age, NASA has produced some of the most iconic images in history. Perhaps the most famous is the one that Bill Anders took of Earthrise over the lunar surface — on Christmas Eve, 1968. While NASA astronauts have a unique opportunity to take literally ‘out of this world’ photographs, the agency’s on-the-ground professional photographers also have contributed to a record of images that never cease to inspire awe and wonder. We will be sharing some more of these with you in the coming weeks and months.

Peter de Wint - A Wooded River Landscape
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Peter de Wint (1784-1849) was devoted to the English countryside and painted landscapes around Lincoln, where his wife’s parents lived. Although known for his broad washes of colour, texture, depth and detail, A Wooded River Landscape is a far more minimalist, tonal painting with sparing use of colour.

We find no blue in the sky and see semi-bare branches (possibly Silver Berch) bent, gnarled, and shaped by the changing seasons, strong winds and harsh winters. But for now, the water is still, reflecting the trees with an almost perfect mirror. There are two cave entrances in the centre — with steps up to each of them — drawing our eyes in and creating a focal point.

Peter de Wint was an English landscape painter. He was the son of an English physician of Dutch descent who had come to England from New York. De Wint painted in oils but is remembered today as one of England’s foremost watercolourists.

De Wint first exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1807 and the following year at the Gallery of Associated Artists in Watercolours. He entered the Royal Academy Schools in 1809. He was elected an Associate of the Old Watercolour Society in 1810 and was made a full member the following year.

A Sunday on La Grande Jatte - Georges Seura
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Considered to be Georges Seurat’s most significant work, A Sunday on La Grande Jatte caused a great scandal when first exhibited in Paris. The composition was unlike anything that had come before it. As a study of colour, light and form, it’s regarded as one of the most notable paintings of the nineteenth century.

Inspired by his research into optical and colour theory, Seurat creates texture, shading and contrast with tiny dots and dabs of colour. Take a moment to zoom in on the image in this email and look for yourself at the thousands of tiny dashes of colour that create the soft, almost dream-like shades and shadows. It’s incredible to view up close, then stand back and look once more at the painting in its entirety.

Seurat surrounded the canvas with a frame of painted dashes and dots that created a direct contrast and then placed the painting within a white wooden frame to increase the intensity further.

Georges Seurat was one of the pioneers of Divisionism, or Pointillism. It’s a neo-Impressionist technique approach using a softly flickering surface of small dots or strokes of colour, such as we pointed out in this work.

Seurat became one of the most famous and celebrated artists on the Parisian avant-garde scene. Sadly, his success was short-lived, as he died at just 31 — and after only ten years of professional artistic life. Nevertheless, he is credited with influencing and inspiring artists, including Van Gogh, and movements like the Italian Futurists.

Edouard Monet Boating
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Manet spent his summers at Gennevilliers — often with Monet and Renoir — across the Seine at Argenteuil. It was there, in the summer of 1874, that he painted Boating. The work has a light touch and draws on Japanese influences — particularly in the distinctive, stylised diagonal strokes on the canvas. It is thought to feature Manet’s brother-in-law, Rodolphe Leenhoff, and an unknown woman.

The male boater wears the white top and trousers of the Tony Cercle Nautique boating club, which is based in Asnières. But it’s the complementary colours and textures of the woman’s dress and the water in the foreground that really stand out — showcasing Manet’s mastery of colour and shade to the full.

Edouard Manet was born in France in 1832. He was one of the first artists to paint ‘modern life’ and an influential figure in the artistic shift from realism to impressionism. Manet was brought up in an upper-class household, but led a bohemian life — causing frequent scandals amongst refined French society.

Manet has long been associated with the Impressionists; he was undoubtedly a significant influence on them and learned much from them himself. But recently, critics have acknowledged he also studied and applied techniques from French realism and naturalism as well as 17th-century Spanish painting.

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This image of South Australia was taken from the Space Shuttle on February 15, 2000. The lightest section of the image is Lake Torrens, a large ephemeral salt lake. Notable as an endorheic lake (one that doesn’t normally drain into a sea or ocean), Lake Torrens flows out through the Pirie-Torrens corridor to the Spencer Gulf only after extreme rainfall.

It’s interesting to note that Australia has the largest concentration of endorheic basins and lakes on Earth — and that around 18% of the earth’s land drains to endorheic lakes or sea.

Since the dawn of the Space Age, NASA has produced some of the most iconic images in history. Perhaps the most famous is the one that Bill Anders took of Earthrise over the lunar surface — on Christmas Eve, 1968. While NASA astronauts have a unique opportunity to take literally ‘out of this world’ photographs, the agency’s on-the-ground professional photographers also have contributed to a record of images that never cease to inspire awe and wonder.

We will be sharing some more of these with you in the coming weeks and months.

Water Lily Pond - Claude Monet
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In 1893 Monet bought a plot of land next to his house in Giverny. He wanted to create a water garden ‘both for the pleasure of the eye and for the purpose of having subjects to paint’. Monet enlarged the existing pond, filling it with water lilies, and built a humpback bridge at one end, inspired by Japanese prints. The water garden became the main obsession of Monet’s later career, and the subject of some 250 paintings.

Here, the bridge spans the width of the canvas but is cut off at the edges so that it seems to float unanchored above the water, its shape reflected in a dark arc at the bottom of the picture. The perspective seems to shift; it is as though we are looking up at the bridge but down on the water lilies floating towards the distance.

Claude Monet was the leader of the French Impressionist movement. Interested in painting in the open air and capturing natural light, Monet would later bring the technique to one of its most famous pinnacles with his series of paintings, in which his observations of the same subject, viewed at various times of the day, were captured in numerous sequences.

Masterful as a colourist and painter of light and atmosphere, his later work often achieved a remarkable degree of abstraction. This has recommended him to subsequent generations of abstract painters.

Valley with Fir - Henri-Edmond Cross
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Valley with Fir is an example of Neoimpressionist painting. Neoimpressionism was a very short-lived European art movement that focused on using separate touches of interwoven and contrasting pigments to create vibrant paintings. It was stricter and more formal than impressionism.

Neoimpressionism, with its tiny, thin visible brushstrokes, was championed by French painters including Henri-Edmond Cross, who saw it as a new way of depicting shadow and light — as is the case with Valley with Fir. It’s often referred to — incorrectly — as pointillism and is said by some art historians to be the first true avant-garde painting movement.

Henri-Edmond Cross was one of the most acclaimed Neoimpressionist artists. He was born Henri-Edmond-Joseph Delacroix in France in 1856 and is widely recognised as playing a pivotal role in nearly modernist painting. Cross took Neopressionism in a new direction — encouraging greater colour intensity and more dreamlike, poetic works.

Fishing Boats, Key West - Winslow Homer
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Few of Homer’s watercolour paintings can match this one for its beautiful recreation of shimmering sunlight captured on the water — and the play between sunlight and shadow.

The painting is also remarkable for using pencil lines to create the sails and rigging and to give a sense of their movement in a very gentle sea breeze. Although the figures are not visible or depicted in great detail, you can get the feel of them calling to each other between the boats.

When you sit and watch the sea — particularly when there’s a light wind — the patterns and reflections change so quickly and in a seemingly random way. Homer captures these fleeting moments, like staccato notes in a score, with an effortless ease that belies his incredible skill.

Winslow Homer was an American landscape painter and printmaker, best known for his marine subjects. He is considered one of the foremost painters in 19th-century America and a preeminent figure in American art.

Largely self-taught, Homer began his career working as a commercial illustrator. He subsequently took up oil painting and produced major studio works characterised by the weight and density he exploited from the medium.

Still Life - Ben Benn
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Still Life paintings have been consistently popular since the 16th Century. They’ve held our interest for so long as they make us look at everyday objects in new ways — and find new meaning in them. They’re also an excellent way to learn about the culture, morality, material wealth and artistic movements that have defined society through history.

As a painter in the Cubist tradition, Ben Benn creates a wonderful geometric study of the fruit, jug, glass and cloth. Take a moment to look at the clever shading and reflections on the table, the red chair with a checked tea towel and the window that gives us a glance into a world beyond the room.

Ben Benn was Russian-born American still life and landscape painter. He was part of the first generation of American artists to be inspired and influenced by Cubism. Throughout his career, Benn fluctuated between abstract and figuration — never settling on one or the other. His approach was highly influenced by Cezanne and Cubism, but his composition was always guided by a love of the world around him and an intuitive feeling for geometry and colour.

Mont Sainte-Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley
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Cézanne loved his hometown of Aix in Provence, France, and would have known Mont Saint-Victoire and the Arc River valley from his earliest childhood.

He brings the scene to life with subtle tones and shades that lead our eyes far into the distance and towards the skyline — almost in the tradition of romantic paintings. Yet the patchwork of fields, the road and the viaduct add an almost geometric quality and add a touch of realism. They cut across what would otherwise be a pastoral scene — reminding us of nearly a century of industrialisation that preceded this painting and the in-roads it had made even to rural regions of South-East France.

Porch of Madonna - Joseph Mallord William Turner
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Turner’s painting is a romance — in the truest sense of the word. It’s not an accurate depiction of Venice (although he had the skills to paint it exactly to proportion if he’d chosen to do so). It’s an impression of a city that he loved and returned to three times during his life.

Venice from the Porch of Madonna della Salute shows Turner’s skills as a maritime artist, and his ability to blend, shade, and unite water and sky. If you look towards the horizon, you’ll see the green shades of the lagoon give way to the same blues in the sky — just as you might in the real world. It’s this detail, precision and understanding of nature that makes Turner one of our most beloved and accessible artists.

JMW Turner was an English romantic painter who created an immense body of work. A child prodigy, during his life Turner completed 550 oil paintings, 200 watercolours, and 30,000 works on paper. Turner was an incredibly private person who never lost his cockney accent and did his best to avoid publicity.

Still Life with Teapot and Fruit - Paul Gauguin
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A post-impressionist, Gauguin loved Cézanne’s work. One of his most treasured possessions was Cézanne’s painting of the same name, from which he draws inspiration for this work. Gauguin switched out lemons for mangos (perhaps alluding to his trips to Tahiti) and added a figure in the background — plus a distant view behind them too.

Maybe the addition of yellow flowers also symbolises his friendship with Van Gogh? These extra dimensions invite us to look beyond the table of fruit and consider how the painting (and the artist) interacts with the outside world.

Gauguin was a French Post-Impressionist. He achieved fame after his death, and his art is known for its experimental colours. Gaugin’s work influenced artists including Picasso and Matisse, and he was also an important figure in the symbolist movement — not just as a painter, but a sculptor, ceramist and writer. Gauguin also influenced the primitive and pastoral movements.

Allée of Chestnut Trees - Alfred Sisley
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Allée of Chestnut Trees captures a peaceful summer’s afternoon in France — the shadows are short, there’s blossom in the trees, and calm in the air. Maybe you can hear the slow click of the horse’s hooves or soft the rattle of the carriage on the riverside path?

Sisely’s ability to add great detail to the very closest trees and then gradually soften the background creates a wonderful depth — and we almost squint to see the distant bridge. Allée of Chestnut Trees also reveals the influence that painters Monet, Pissarro and Renoir had on Sisley — and confirms his place as one of the masters of the impressionist movement.

Many critics consider Sisley to be unequalled amongst impressionists for his depiction of dramatic and impressive skylines. He is also one of the few artists within the movement to paint outdoors rather than in a studio.

Irisies (Original) - Vincent van Gogh
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Those Who Go captures the rush of urban life. Created in the Futurist style, it forces us to confront a new century filled with heavy industry and seemingly unstoppable energy.

Futurists were obsessed with leaving the past behind, so a railway station — packed with fast, powerful steam trains and people in transit — is the perfect metaphor.

Boccioni would go on to create a colour version in oil. But we love this earlier monochrome concept; those powerful sweeping lines conveying the confusion felt by everyone on the platform — passengers in every sense of the word — as they hurtle towards an unrecognisable future.

Irisies (Restored) - Vincent van Gogh
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The Street Pavers - Umberto Boccioni
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Those Who Go captures the rush of urban life. Created in the Futurist style, it forces us to confront a new century filled with heavy industry and seemingly unstoppable energy.

Futurists were obsessed with leaving the past behind, so a railway station — packed with fast, powerful steam trains and people in transit — is the perfect metaphor.

Boccioni would go on to create a colour version in oil. But we love this earlier monochrome concept; those powerful sweeping lines conveying the confusion felt by everyone on the platform — passengers in every sense of the word — as they hurtle towards an unrecognisable future.

Early Morning near Loch Katrine in the Trossachs, Scotland - John Glover
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Those Who Go captures the rush of urban life. Created in the Futurist style, it forces us to confront a new century filled with heavy industry and seemingly unstoppable energy.

Futurists were obsessed with leaving the past behind, so a railway station — packed with fast, powerful steam trains and people in transit — is the perfect metaphor.

Boccioni would go on to create a colour version in oil. But we love this earlier monochrome concept; those powerful sweeping lines conveying the confusion felt by everyone on the platform — passengers in every sense of the word — as they hurtle towards an unrecognisable future.

States of Mind: Those Who Go - Umberto Boccioni
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Those Who Go captures the rush of urban life. Created in the Futurist style, it forces us to confront a new century filled with heavy industry and seemingly unstoppable energy.

Futurists were obsessed with leaving the past behind, so a railway station — packed with fast, powerful steam trains and people in transit — is the perfect metaphor.

Boccioni would go on to create a colour version in oil. But we love this earlier monochrome concept; those powerful sweeping lines conveying the confusion felt by everyone on the platform — passengers in every sense of the word — as they hurtle towards an unrecognisable future.

Mäda Primavesi - Gustav Klimt
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Mäda Primavesi was immortalised in this portrait when she was just nine years old. Wearing white, Klimt deliberately draws you to her confident gaze — Mäda demands to be noticed and heard.

Mäda Primavesi is painted at an interesting time — artistically and historically. 1912 puts this painting at the crossroads between Art Nouveau and Art Deco, and in the last few years of peace before WWI.

Looking back, perhaps we see that soon-to-vanish innocence in Mäda’s eyes too — made more poignant as we now know the dark days of war that were just around the corner. For all these reasons, Mäda Primavesi is a beautiful and accomplished study of the last days of childhood and a requiem to a world that would soon vanish.

Gustav Klimt, an Austrian, was one of the most famous members of the Vienna Secession movement. He was often influenced by Japanese art, which you can see in the colours and setting of Mäda Primavesi. Klimt is best known for The Kiss and his mural on the ceiling of Vienna University.

Ocean Life - James M Sommerville
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Ocean Life is one of the earliest examples of an American underwater illustration. It was originally created as a scientific study. But the beautiful colours, exotic plants and animals, and astonishing detail make Ocean Life an enduring work of art that’s loved and appreciated far beyond the scientific community.

Take a moment to zoom in on the detail, and you’ll see how much thought, research, and time went into the drawing’s creation. In many ways, Ocean Life is a part of the Renaissance tradition — crossing the boundaries between science and art to create something beautiful and lasting that also contributes to our understanding of the world around us.

James M. Sommerville was a physician, amateur naturalist, member of the Academy of Natural Sciences.Christian Schussele was the first professor of drawing and painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. He’s also widely credited with designing the American Medal of Honor.

Christian Schussele was the first professor of drawing and painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. He’s also widely credited with designing the American Medal of Honor.

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Wall Art 250 prints come with a lot of features

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10+ Years

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All image types

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9 Colour Epson Pigment

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Questions about Wall Art 250 Prints

Can you resize my image?2021-06-08T17:32:09+10:00

As long as your file has enough resolution and is in proportion to the size you have ordered our RIP (Raster Interpolation Process) will scale your file to the size you have ordered. There is no need to set up your file in Photoshop to a specific size.

How do I know my image/file is high enough quality?2021-06-08T17:32:43+10:00

On our help page you can check the requirements for any given size. Enter your image pixel dimensions and required print size and the calculator will tell you if it works or suggest a different size. Alternatively, enlarge your image on screen to the size you want it printed to get an approximate idea of resolution and quality.

How can I avoid my image printing too dark compared to my screen?2021-02-02T12:53:05+11:00

There are a number of things that you can do to prevent this happening even when working with an uncalibrated screen. First, lower the brightness of your screen so that brightest part of your screen (white) has the same level of brightness as a white piece of paper. Once you have done this have a look at your image on a white, grey and black background. Reduce the image size on screen and review the image at a matchbox size (app 30x 40 mm ). Now adjust your image until you are happy with it whilst viewing it in each of the above scenarios and be assured that your printed result will not be too dark.

Can I have borders on my prints?2021-06-08T17:35:26+10:00

We mainly print from print-ready artworks so if you require borders, please include them within your artwork. If you require extra white material outside your ordered size you can add this in the checkout. The options are 10mm/25mm/50mm additional white media outside your image. so if you want borders please include them within your artwork.

How do I set up my file?2021-01-25T12:25:28+11:00

In general 72 dpi (or above) at final print size will give you a good quality images. Text or logos should preferably be as vector files or minimum 100 dpi. You can learn more on our help page here. On this page you can also check that your image is the right proportions for the size you want to order.

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How to frame your art

Both the colour and shape of a frame are distinctive features that will enhance and complement your art. Spend the time to find the right one and there are inexpensive solutions.

What is the image focal point?
Full-bleed framing (the image sits edge to edge) is great for any print with a lot of negative (or empty) space. Adding an extra border (or Matt) around your photo can draw the eye towards the centre. The width of the border can be determined by balancing the space between the frame and image.

What’s the decor style of the room?
Choose from Rustic to Modern frame shapes and style to compliment the image and room and match the colour with one in your image or with your decor.

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