Loving Vincent Marguerite Gachet (Saoirse Ronan) at the piano in a scene from "Loving Vincent"

Make a date with your closest friends because “Loving Vincent,” the animated film inspired by Van Gogh’s paintings, is now available (links below).

This long-awaited film is sure to be loved by many audiences, from those of us who live and breathe for creative arts, to the general public, old and young. We’ve seen movies about artists, but this is the first time the paintings themselves have been featured in such an integrated way.

Night Café, Arles Lt Milliet (Robin Hodges) and Armand Roulin (Douglas Booth), in a scene from “Loving Vincent”

“The film brings the paintings of Vincent Van Gogh to life to tell his remarkable story. Every one of the 65,000 frames of the film is an oil painting hand-painted by 125 professional artists who traveled from all across the world to the Loving Vincent studios in Poland and Greece to be a part of the production.”

Tony Bancroft of the SIFF Animation Jury tells us, “Never has there been a film that spoke to the heart of an artist like ‘Loving Vincent.’ Animation and fine art painting come together in this loving tribute to the work and life of a master artist.” Along the same lines, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts recently announced “Loving Vincent” has been nominated for Best Animated Film.

Vincent (Robert Gulaczyk) painting in the rain (from the film)

How was “Loving Vincent” created?

“‘Loving Vincent’ was first shot as a live action film with actors, and then hand-painted over frame-by-frame in oils,” says the film team. “The final effect is an interaction of the performance of the actors playing Vincent’s famous portraits, and the performance of the painting animators, bringing these characters into the medium of paint.

“Vincent’s paintings come in different shapes and sizes, so the design painters had to work out how to best show these paintings within the frame set by the cinema screen. This required breaking outside the frames of Vincent’s paintings, while still retaining the feel and inspiration of Vincent’s originals. They also had to work out how to deal with ‘invasions,’ where a character painted in one style, comes into another Vincent painting with a different style. They also have to, for the purpose of the story, sometimes change daytime paintings into nighttime paintings, or paintings which were done in autumn or winter had to be re-imagined for summer, when the journey of the film takes place.”

’Loving Vincent’ Fact: 377 paintings were created during the Design Painting process.

“Loving Vincent” is available on Blu-ray, DVD, on demand, and Digital HD (order on iTunes or Amazon).

When an “outside” media bridges the gap between the love we have for art by portraying the art life, the creative life as we know it, I think it makes us feel more whole. It justifies that we’re doing something that matters, something that can be transcendent for those who don’t always understand, and perhaps open their eyes to why art is important. One reason “Loving Vincent” is important is because of this — its ability to reach out to the masses through the medium of storytelling on film.

What did you first feel or think when you heard about “Loving Vincent”? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.

Related article: Vincent is Loved

2 COMMENTS

  1. I think Van Gogh would have liked the idea, even if he wouldn’t have wanted the attention on to be on himself. He stated that he wanted to produce art that everyday people could hang on their walls and enjoy. I think he would have liked a project like this that could appeal to so many people through a medium that everyone uses.

  2. Art Colony Giverny, as part of our French countryside experience, often visits Auvers with our participants. We had heard of the film from artists who were hoping to be part of the project. We went to see this wonderful film in a nearby theatre. What an experience!

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