I've always been interested in realism as a painting style. The old Dutch masters like Rembrandt and Vermeer were an endless source of amazement for me as a young man. Their works seemed magical, almost as if the subjects were right there in the flesh. How can that be paint? As a reaction to the ubiquitous abstract work of the 50s and 60s came the photorealists like Richard Estes and Chuck Close. They brought realism back from the brink of the abyss. Their slavish adherence to the source material, i.e. photographs, bordered on fanaticism however but the results were in many cases visually intriguing. I played around with their techniques a little in my early days and these are a few examples.