Santa Monica College Raphaels Portrait vs Frans Hals Portrait Essay

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Q.1 Comparative Essay, Portriature: Raphael vs. Hals


First, watch the videos and read the texts covering the portraiture of Frans Hals:

  1. Frans Hals, An Introduction
  2. Frans Hals, Mal Babbe (Links to an external site.)

Then, use the Raphael vs. Hals comparison images in this week’s module to compare and contrast these two portraits in an approximately 250 word essay.

Consider the following questions in your answer:

  1. How does each subject engage with the veiwer differently in each work?
  2. How do you think the socioeconomic class of the two subjects differ?
  3. How is the style and brushwork of each painting differ?
  4. How is the setting of the two portraits different?
  5. Which painting conveys more emotion and feeling?
  6. Which painter would you pefer to paint your portrait?


Creative Written Assignment: Narrate the Genre Painting


Genre painting was meant to tell a moralizing and/or humorous story. One popular practice was to reproduce a painting as a print, and include a text that narrated the subject.

First, watch the following TedTalk about finding the story in paintings:

  1. Finding the Story Inside the Painting

Then, create a 100-200 word narrative for the Dutch genre paiting below. Your narrative can be humorous or somber, what every you choose try to connect your narrative to the scene portrayed in the paintings.

Jan Steen, The Doctor’s Visit, 1658, Oil on Canvas:


Discussion Thread: Create Your Own Still-Life


The popularity of still life paintings among Dutch Baroque paintings exploded during the 17th century. Still life paintings reflected the propsperity the Dutch beleived resulted from their democratic style of government, their colonial endeavors, and their commitment to meritocratic values. Often times the still life paintings included exotic objects from colonies of the Dutch Empire and indicates their imperial values.

Still life paintings also included iconography that included symbolic meanings. Often they include memento mori objects like skulls, stopped watches, and snuffed out candles, indicating that eventually everyone’s time on earth runs out. Other objects were included to indicate personal hisories and meanings.

First, watch the video covering Dutch Still Life paintings:

  1. Still Life Painting In Northern Europe, 1600 ACE-1800ACE

Your assignment is to arrange a still life with at least three objects, that contains a symbolic meaning. The objects you choose may indicate your personal history, values, culture, desires, or things that bring you joy. Take a picture of your still life, and post it online. Please also write anywhere between 200-600 words explaining the symbolic meaning of your still life, and comment on one other student’s submission.


Fragonard’s The Swing vs. Angelica Kauffman’s “Cornelia Presents Her Children”

Use the powerpoint in the module to compare and contrast Frangonard’s “The Swing” and Kauffman’s “Cornelia Presenting Her Children.”

Consider the following questions in your response:

How are women represented differently in each painting?

How has the setting changed, and what might this change indicate?

What qualities of femininity does each painting advance?

What are some differences between Rococo and Neoclassical Art?

Write an approximately 250-300 word essay comparing and contrasting the two works of art.

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