Johannes Vermeer was born in Delft in 1632 and lived there his entire life until he died in 1675. Ever since he was a little boy, Vermeer had been involved in art, serving as a master art dealer after his father died in 1652. He soon started painting under the training of Leonaert Bramer through certain family connections. Vermeer soon became a master in the Saint Luke's Guild in 1653. Genre scenes, landscaped, and allegories became Vermeer's most known pieces of art. Little is know about relationships or influences Vermeer had with other artists, though Gerard ter Borch II co-signed a document in 1653. Milkmaid was one of Vermeer's pieces that sold in 1719. The composition of the picture is so simple to the untrained eye. Given the woman pouring milk, an uneducated mind would accept this as a dreary woman at work that lived centuries ago.
The Milkmaid in some ways resembles the style of Vermeer's predecessors, yet the ambiguous feeling of the painting lives up to his own maturity. The detail expressed through the picture is the occurrence of light upon the milkmaid. The brushstrokes of color are so deliberately contrived they may well stray an anxious historian comfortable with his style. Vermeer painted two different copies of this scene almost completely identical. There were a couple of small changes that may be overlooked, yet there are some objects that appear completely exact. Color blotches appear on the woman's face alone with different texture rivets in her skirt. One painting may be used with the other to give emphasis to the woman's face and stomach, giving hint to lead us to believe that this woman is a mother.
Many artists use symbols in their paintings to get a point across and that takes no exception here. If you look closely, you may notice a little design on the tile between the woman's skirt and the foot warmer. This design depicts a cupid preparing to shoot his bow. In the …


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