Here are a few examples of work from the French painter Paul Cezanne. His paintings, which are much loved by many around the world, have inspired the impressionistic art style seen in Legend of Zelda; The Skyward Sword.
Shigeru Miyamoto during his E3 presentation referred to the graphics as being like a "moving painting", and during the Nintendo's E3 roundtable later on that day, he referred to them as “Impressionistic.” Specifically, that the sky and mountains were inspired by the art of Impressionist painter Paul Cézanne.
The moment I saw the game for the first time, I instantly got the impression it was inspired by his work, that was clear to me when looking at the nature of the vivid lighting and gratuitous blocks of colour, the latter of which appear to be laid down with the same degree of boldness the great artist applied,
I'd expect anyone else who's familiar with his work would have got the same vibe also. It's for that sole reason I think Nintendo have done a fantastic job in creating something very similar to his art style in videogame form, because I know first hand that in computer graphics such a task isn't an easy thing to do all.
Impressionism focuses on evoking a feeling, an artist's instinctive response with a painting medium to something he or she sees in the real world or in their minds eye. Impressionism not about precision in depicting form, colour or texture, something which is easily done with computer graphics today.
Much of Cezanne's work focuses heavily on the ability of light to change the visual effect of all matter, he often attempted to depict this metamorphosis of nature throughout the days and seasons, showing us how it could distort forms and colours, ultimately changing the viewers perception of things. It will be very interesting to see if Nintendo attempts to capture these subtle transitions of light, just as well as the painter does in static form on a canvas...
Many of the landscapes were done in Aix En province in the south of France. If your'e wondering, Cezanne was obsessed with painting one particular mountain - Mont Sainte Victoire. The artist painted it many times in his life during various times of the year. He was also fond of apples, he liked the way light fell on them and perhaps, their allegorical meaning,
Art lesson over :) - I just thought a little clarification was needed after seeing some misguided views elsewhere.
Kotaku have a brief video up highlighting the games impressionistic art style: