Asked • 05/22/19

Why are there no photorealistic paintings from the old days?

As proven by many recent examples, some people can develop their drawing skill to such a level as to produce drawings that are difficult to distinguish from photographs. Yet much of historical art is stylized.How come we don't see any photorealistic drawings from the old days? They do not appear to depend on any modern technology, so it seems odd that _no_ historical artist would try it. Was it simply because other styles were fashionable at the time, so that artists would stylize their paintings for artistic effect?Was it because people didn't have enough free time to practice drawing, say, 1000 years ago? I find it difficult to imagine that _nobody_ did.Or maybe photorealistic paintings _are_ in fact influenced by the development of photography, and the paintings we see today would simply not look particularly realistic to people before photography became mainstream?(Another possibility is that I am simply factually wrong and photorealistic drawings from the old days exist, but are simply not famous enough for me to have seen them.)

1 Expert Answer


Noelle T. answered • 06/12/19

Acrylic, Oil, & Watercolor Instructor 7+ Years Experience

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