The Da Vinci Code - (Elizabeth Vitacco)

This gallery includes representations of a variety of Leonardo Da Vinci's paintings and drawings that show contrast during the Renaissance time period in history. In this gallery I plan to show you how contrast was used as a way to show the visual difference between certain art elements, like color, size, and texture in a variety of paintings and drawings.

The Mona Lisa is a portrait of a woman seated in a dress of her time period with a mountainous landscape in the background. This is one of the most famous painting of all time and it is best known for the smile. The smile was Leonardo Da Vinci's way of showing happiness. The smile was his intended motif of the painting. Besides that, there are other visual elements that are also represented in this painting. The painting shows many different elements of contrast, like the color of the picture and how he used warm colors for the color of her skin and the sky area of the background. Size also plays a role in the element of contrast of this painting. In her smile particularly, it isn't really that big, so when you look at it you don't really think happiness. The size of the background shows you that the woman depicted in the painting was supposed to be the main focus, and he did a great job doing that. The last element of contrast in this painting that I see is texture. The texture of this painting looks a bit rough, and that might be from it being a painting and how old the painting is. Leonardo Da Vinci is one of the greatest artists of the Renaissance time period and this is one of his best works. The technique is of a soft, shaded work of art and that is really cool.
The portrait of Ginevra de' Benci depicts a woman with a bad temper, as shown by her facial expression. The woman in the portrait also appears to be in some sort of formal dress, meaning she was probably very wealthy. The background of this painting appears to be a body of water, like a lake, with trees and some buildings in the far distance. In this painting we see elements of contrast, like color and size. In the painting color is used as a way to show the different aspects of the painting, like the shine from the water, her skin tone, the trees, and her dress. The color of the trees behind her kind of looked like a head piece when I first looked at it, so it was hard for me to really tell what it was at first. Color is important because it helps you understand the different parts of a picture so it doesn't look like one huge mess, and he did a good job using color in this piece. Size is another aspect of contrast that I se in this piece. If you look at her face and how it gives off a mean, bad-tempered look, it's because of how her face was created using different sizes of her eyes, her mouth, and even her eyebrows. If you look at her eyes you can tell right away that she is disgusted with something. Along with her eyes is her mouth and that also shows a sign of a sulky bad attitude. This is probably because the woman in the picture was going on her fourth marriage and she wasn't happy about it. Size ad color seemed to be important aspects in this painting because the make the picture what it is, it lets you know the different parts of the picture and it lets you know the emotions depicted as well. It's pretty amazing what contrast can do to a painting or and artwork in general.
The Annunciation depicts an angle on the left and the virgin on the right with a lectern in the middle of the both of them. There is also a background with trees and some architectural features. For this piece Leonardo used color as a way to show the difference between the angel and the virgin. If you look closely at the painting you can see that the angel is supposed to be invisible, towards her legs you can see that they are transparent or lighter than the virgin's. It shows the difference between immortal and mortal. The background of this work of art is very interesting because it seems to be more life-like and modern than the other paintings that I have already talked about. The shade used in the background is a way to show the darker aspects that trees have compared to the rest of the painting. This piece also uses size as a way to show contrast. If you look at the piece you can kind of see that perspective was used in a sense that some aspects of the painting are smaller than others, to give it that perspective of a 3D like view, and I think that's really cool.
The Adoration of the Magi depicts The Virgin Mary and her son with many different figures in the background, including horses, trees, a rocky mountain landscape, and other people circled around The Virgin Mary and her son. This piece is very different from the past one's that I have already talked about because of how dark it looks and everything that is going on in the piece. The color of this piece is very interesting because the color seems to be earthly colors, with some spaces darker than others, like the tree and the ground they are kneeling on. Whereas the rest of the picture is basically a lighter color. The more important areas of this piece are probably the lighter areas and the darker areas represent the landscape or environment they were in. This piece also used size as a way to show perspective, if you look at the piece you can see that the architectural piece in the background was not completed or was left out purposely as a way to show a visual perspective that makes it 3D like. This piece is very dark, but it is also an interesting piece that shows a lot going on along with different emotions as well, and that's why it is so interesting.
The Head of Leda depicts a woman head with really curly hair. this piece is very different from the other one's in a sense that this piece wasn't finished, or the pieces of this work or art were lost over the years. Other than that, the only contrast element of art that I can see in this piece is color. In this case shading was used as a way to show color. If you look at the piece you can see that the woman's hair is shaded so that the viewer can see the different aspects of the piece. The hair isn't just one color or shade, there is an area of lighter shade that shows a glare from a light in the woman's hair as a way to give it life. Based on the look or pose the woman is giving it is really hard to tell what she is feeling. She might be secretive, sensitive, or of an intellectual nature, but it is very hard to tell given that there is only so much going on in the picture. Even though this piece isn't completed it is still an amazing work of art.
The Last Supper depicts Jesus and his 12 disciples gathered together to eat. This was before he told them that one of his disciples would betray him. As you can see from the picture it is not in color and that is because I couldn't find on in color, so I decided to use a sketch which was also done by Leonardo Da Vinci. Even though there is not color there is shade used as a way to show color, or to make the piece look and feel real. Along with the color of the piece there is also the use of perspective. There is a room drawn that gives a 3D feel with the disciples and Jesus sitting around a table. All of the disciples and Jesus have details put into their outfits well as their facial expressions. This piece is also one of Leonardo Da Vinci's most famous works of art. Even though it isn't colored, I think that it is enough to go by to go over everything depicted as well as the contrasts of the elements of art in the painting, or in this case the sketch.
The Baptism of Christ depicts Jesus along with St. John the Baptist and two angles off the side. The background of this piece is a landscape with trees, rocks, mountains, and a body of water. Each element of this piece is colored differently as a way to show who each person is and what they represent. the little angles are in blue with yellow halo's to show who they are and what they do. St. John is seen in white, blue, black with a yellow halo as well to show that he is of a different representation than everyone else in the painting. Jesus is shown in a multicolored cloth that just covers his private area, but he also has a yellow halo above his head making it easy to depict that he is Jesus and the is being baptized. Along with the color in this piece there is also size shown in this painting. Each person in this piece are different sizes, and the size of the people are much bigger than the background so that it doesn't take away from the main message of the piece. The painting tells a story and it is very easy to understand, especially since it is based off of the title. Each piece of this painting represents something and it is very easy to understand who is who and what they do or represent in the painting.
A Deluge depicts a large flood that takes up the picture as a whole. This piece was painted as a way to show waves, when Leonardo painted this piece his strokes were wave like so that he would get the water like look. This also makes it easier for viewers to see what is going on. Along with the strokes of the paintbrush the color of this piece was used as a way to give the water detail so that it isn't just a bunch of lines that are curved. Parts of this piece were shaded to show the different aspects of the water so that it isn't just one color, Leonardo gave it a more real look. This is a really impressive piece, as well as unique in the way that it was done.
The Study for an Equestrian Monument (recto) depicts a man mounted on a horse that seems to be in some kind of war, as the man is seen with a sword in his hand. this piece doesn't really include much but by the looks of it there is shading within the horse as well as the man mounted on the horse. the shading shows you the different areas of the picture, like the darker areas give the sketch a life like feel. The hair of the horse is darker compared to the rest of its body, but there are parts of the horse that are left a lighter shade or white to show tone on the horses body as well as the mans body. Another thing in this sketch is the horse shadow. This would tell you that it would be light outside. When you look at this piece you can see that when Leonardo sketched this the lines are of many different shapes, like angles, round, pointed, etc. When you look at the shading you can also see the lines from his pencil strokes, that shows that he was delicate with the shading. Besides that the picture is very well done with a great amount of detail, especially since it is only a sketch. This piece also tells you a lot, for one thing it tells you that this piece was a representation of a man at war with his horse.
The Wreath of Laurel, Palm, and Juniper with a Scroll inscribed Virtutem Forum Decorat (reverse) depicts exactly what the title says. There are leaf like objects in the painting with a banner wrapping around them. This piece is very well done because if you look at it the leaves almost look like they are risen off of the background of the painting. it is all one piece but Leonardo gave it perspective, a 3D like look. Another thing represented in this piece is color and he used that as a contrast to separate the wrath from the background to make it look like it isn't attached to it, as I mentioned before. This piece is amazing and it almost doesn't look like a painting at all, it looks like it was hand carved being that the silver that was used gives it a real life feel. I really like this piece because of how well it was done.
Credits: All media
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