Learning and education require a lot of one thing: researching. You know, endlessly toiling through databases with interesting if less-than-accurate results to your search inquiry, combing the bookshelves of your schools library, sometimes googling, when that is “okay”. It all comes down to finding out information. For artists, this process continues past education into every idea we want to explore for art creation.
Recently, I re-examined Dutch Style Still Life in context to a painting I did last Winter. Feel free to page down on this blog to read it. Now I am re-researching (is that a word?) sources for my interpretation of the old masters works. I thought there would be tons of good stuff for me to find and read, alas this doesn’t seem to be the case, or perhaps I am not asking the right questions. I am using the Lane Library Research Database which accesses a variety of on-line scholarly databases. So far searches for: Dutch Style Still Life, Dutch Golden Age Painting and Vermeer have produced less relevant material then simply going to Wikipedia and typing in Dutch Style Still Life (which brings up a detailed page with a long list of cited material).
I have to admit I am surprised! What is it that I am doing wrong? When I had Physical Anthropology last term I think I spent 20 minutes researching Orangutans before I found a plethora of interesting and relevant articles on exactly what I wanted to learn on the red haired ape. I suppose another go at it, only this time I will try a more specific search parameter “Meaning in Dutch Style Still Life”… No results found.
Well needless to say, this is a frustrating process. Maybe if I move on to finding a resource in a blog. Aha!
So, I found a blog entry, and it seems the blogger agrees with me for the most part, great! Okay, now to get that pesky database to work for me. I have tried simpler: Dutch painting, and more complicated listing out a painting in particular: Still Life with a Chinese Porcelain Jar, Willem Kalf (and others). I found reviews on shows at the Met, or reviews on books written on topics and I have found “no results found”. It appears to me, if I want to get another opinion on my interpretation of Dutch Style Still Life I am going to have to walk into the library and peruse the shelves.
One incredibly useful website I found in my attempt to re-research my topic was this site for citing: http://www.easybib.com . Just type in the information for what you want to cite and it will automatically create it for you in MLA or APA format. Golden!
Rodriguez, Levin. “Following Willem Kalf’s Lead….” Weblog post. The Berkmeyer Project. 16 Dec. 2010. Web. 8 Feb. 2012. <http://levinrodriguez.blogspot.com/2011/12/following-willem-kalfs-lead.html>.