trompe loeil ceiling

Trompe l'oeil ceiling detail (torn architects plan)

                        Trompe l'oeil............literally to 'trick the eye'.

I love the challenge of being a trompe l'oeil artist and trying to paint things that look more real than REAL.

The images that work most successfully are those which depict things that do not protrude too much...... objects which ideally are no more than a few inches in thickness and throw a good shadow.  People, landscapes, things which move, these have a limited success but books, playing cards, coins, combs, scraps of paper and just about anything that we can pin or tape to a wall: this is the stuff of trompe l'oeil.

Typical early French trompe l'oeil paintings were often of manageable size ( for a quick, convenient sale), inexpensive, and rapidly executed.  The artist would have a good visual memory- relying on his knowledge of light and shade which would be exaggerated for an enhanced 3d effect.

Look at the barometer in my trompe l'oeil gallery which was executed on a cut out board in acrylics.
The weather is always set fair!

Trompe l'oeil becomes even more challenging when used in mural decoration and in large scale commissions.  Architecture of a particular type is popular with trompe l'oeil and mural painters: columns and pilasters, stone walls, arches and the ubiquitous niche grace the walls  (some would say ad nauseam) of country houses throughout Britain, Europe and America.


I find that success comes with invention. I strive to make my murals and trompe l'oeil a little different, no vistas, balustrades or pergolas please!