How we change

May 23rd, 2017

One of the things I have hanging on my wall is a print of Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party. A few months ago I noticed the artwork’s composition fit the golden ratio. It’s a common painting technique, I just hadn’t noticed it until I decided to take a few minutes and study it. Looking at it again also gave me a better understanding of what attracted me to the painting in the first place.

Renoir's Luncheon of the Boating Party with the golden ratio

Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party with the golden ratio

I decided to look at the painting again after rewatching the movie Amelie where the painting is referenced. One of the main characters paints it over and over again, each time seeing something different in the process of improving his craft. Every once in a while I decide to rewatch certain movies that come to mind. Usually the ones that have stuck with me and which seem to come up because they relate to a particular mood I’m in. Like the character in the movie, I often tend to see something different when watching them again.

But I’ve come to realize that it’s not that there is something different or something I may have missed before (though that may certainly be part of it). It’s the fact that I’m watching them with different eyes. Whether rewatching a movie, rereading a book or comic or even listening to a certain song again that I may have listened to a hundred times before, my response is really just a reflection of how I’ve changed.

We all constantly change. Sometimes we don’t realize what those changes are. And sometimes we see the changes in unexpected ways. I decided to take another few minutes to look at the painting before posting this. And will keep looking at it from time to time to learn more about how I continue to change.