Whew. At last I'm coming out of a major block against working from life, which started several months ago. I'm not sure if it's because I was getting too used to the convenience of working from images, or the increased possibilities of interesting subject matter, but I sure have been having trouble setting up a still life and feeling like I care.
I love painting vegetables, fruit and flowers, fish and seashells and other typical still life subjects, but I realize that in order to feel strongly enough about these small things to paint from them, I need to really push unusual viewpoints and dynamic lighting- whatever it takes for me to feel like they have something to say. Notice I wrote "they", not "I", because I honestly feel like this beautiful acorn squash is the one talking here.
I find the great photographer Edward Weston's images of vegetables to be especially inspiring. Here are some of his sensual interpretations of common vegetables:
Cabbage Leaf 1931
White Radishes 1933