Book Review: Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera

Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera

Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera is a book that brings you behind the scenes to look at how the legendary artist uses photographs for his paintings. It's filled with paintings and the reference photographs from the Norman Rockwell Museum.

Apparently, Rockwell used live models for all of his work. Every model will be meticulously costumed and posed until he could get his perfect composition. Preparing the shot almost seems like an art form itself as he tirelessly puts in all the details required, sometimes to the extend of staging elaborate settings, like deciding the items to display on the table behind models. Every painting is well conceived and composed in his mind even before he lays paint on canvas. If you've read any biography of him, you won't be surprised by his dedication.

Included in this book is a great selection of his paintings and the photos he used, put side by side for comparison. The author Ron Schick has done a great job providing commentary to all the illustrations, through interviews with people who have worked with Rockwell. There's plenty of insight and a few lessons to be learned on posing models. You'll see what are the details Rockwell retains and those that he leaves out.

This is an inspiring book recommended to all admirers of Norman Rockwell's paintings, and to artists who want to learn more on using references from the master painter.

You can find out more about Norman Rockwell at the Norman Rockwell Museum.

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