"The Starry Night," by Vincent Van Gogh is an example of an expressionist's perspective of an unusual, chaotic, star-studded night, above a small town located in the middle of a hilly landscape. At the bottom left of the painting, pressed up close, there is a dark, flame-like, tree that twists upwards into the sky, almost as if to divide the heavens. In the center of town, there is church that stands out from any of the other structures. The top steeple just barely pierces the horizon like a tiny needle, with the vastness of the rolling sky.
Many artists have different definitions for the word line. It can be said to be a continuous mark made by a pencil, or a brush applied to a surface that is used to define a shape or represent a contour. Lines can be drawn in numerous different ways also. A few of the different ways a line can be drawn are thick or thin, light or dark, straight or curved, heavy or dark, and slow and fast. With these different drawing techniques, artists can evoke a certain emotion or present a certain mood about a painting.
Van Gogh paints the sky and the tree in bottom left with overlapping, quick, and curving strokes that create a great sense of dynamic, swirling motion. He paints the hills and the smaller trees that line the town with a similar but more gentle, thinner brush strokes that differentiates them from the sky and the tree in the foreground. Van Gogh paints the town in straight, diagonals and horizontals, and does not pays much attention to small detail. The small yellow lights in the buildings are all square or rectangular in shape, in contrast to the stars above. The church is the only building that has actual planes of color and complex outer structure.
As far as color is considered, blue and purple pretty much dominate the painting. In the sky, the moon itself is a yellowish orange color, while the two spiraling bands in the sky are greenish-blue.