Painting is the selective recreation of reality through the use of a two-dimensional drawing. It is a category of art that includes drawings, paintings, and sketches. Its purpose is to clarify particular concepts by making them directly perceivable. By bringing a concept to the level of perception, it makes it possible to contemplate the subject in essentials with visual clarity.

Making a concept visually perceivable is achieved through a process of creating a visual integration. Since concepts are formed by selecting essential criteria, and abstracting away any non-essential characteristic, the resulting mental unit consists of only the important features. Similarly, a visual integration is possible. By abstracting away the non-essential visual features, the painting is left with a visual equivalent of a concept. If done correctly and well, the painting will portray the essential characteristics of an object.

The result of such a visual integration is that the subject will look not only real, but will appear to be the perfect representation of an object. This in spite of the fact that one may never have seen an object that looked quite like it. It will look like the subject should look, and not what it does look like.

Copyright 2001 by Jeff Landauer and Joseph Rowlands