Inspiration: Sir Frank Dicksee

I just stumbled on a collection of paintings by Sir Francis Dicksee and saw some really great paintings that I was completely unaware of. I didn't know much about him or his work, and previously thought of him as a genre painter and member of the pre-raphaelite movement. Upon reading his biography, he apparently only has a loose association with the movement – mostly because of his general style and popular genre paintings like the Romeo & Juliet or Othelo works that you most likely have seen.

Francis Bernard Dicksee was born in London, 1853. He studied in the studio of his father, Thomas Francis Dicksee, who painted portraits and historical genre scenes; he then enrolled at the Royal Academy in 1870, was elected RA in 1891, and became it's president in 1924. Through some early studies with Henry Holiday, a designer of stained glass, Dicksee grew to enjoy the decorative and detailed aspects of painting. With the further influences of Fredric Leighton and G.F. Watts, Dicksee filled his wonderful compositions with orchestrations of color and elaborate detail.

It's because of this attention to composition, detail, and decoration, that I find it an inspiration for my own work. I can't imagine the amount of time and devotion that went into these paintings. I consider them masterpieces and I hope to someday create works that warrant the same title. Although I personally like a loose, painterly style, I admire these works very much, and feel that they still have plenty of exquisite brush work that is generally unnoticeable in much of today's "classicism" and photo realism styles.

Other interesting historical notes is that his sister Margaret Isabel and brother Herbert Thomas were also painters, along with his uncle John Robert Dicksee and his aforementioned father.

Sir Frank Dicksee passed away suddenly on the 17th of October 1928.

 For more on Dicksee, check out the Art Renewal Center info