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Submitted on
October 24, 2011
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2.0 MB


131 (who?)
Vincent 'van Go' by Himmapaan Vincent 'van Go' by Himmapaan
This drawing is over a year old, but I've just stumbled upon it and wanted to share.

A gentle parody on the American pronunciation of Vincent van Gogh's name.* Hearing it pronounced as 'van Go' usually produces the same effect in me as it does hearing apes being called 'monkeys'.

The drawing might have worked with greater immediacy if I'd drawn a modern van instead of a nineteenth century one, but it wouldn't have been as visually interesting. Aside from the fact that getting me to draw something like a modern vehicle -- or any piece of modern machinery -- is just as effective as... well, as persuading me to say 'van Go'...

The caricature of van Gogh was inspired by this Self Portrait (with bandaged ear) of 1889.

Though, without a horse, I don't expect this van will be goghing anywhere...

*The correct pronunciation is a slightly tricky thing to explain. Briefly, Gogh begins and ends in a guttural 'h'-like sound, much as the Gaelic and German 'ch' does; as in 'loch', or 'Bach' for example.** The 'o' is also closer to 'loch' and not as severe as in 'go'.

**There are further subtleties in the difference between the 'ich-laut' (the palatal fricative), or the 'ach-laut' (velar fricative) of this guttural sound. A detailed explanation. But adopting either will at least come closer to his name.
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Liastoria-Alestera Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
How coincidental...I'm taking a break from studying for my linguistic analysis test and here I am stumbling upon "Van Go"! :D I get what you mean haha, and I really do love this caricature!
Himmapaan Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you!
Liastoria-Alestera Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Welcome! Keep drawing!:D
MalkavianDreams Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
Aaahahaha this is perfect! Excellent work :)
HaveTales-WillTell Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2011  Professional Writer
Sadly, I too was one of those uncouth Americans who simply didn't know any better. Mea maxima culpa, and I shall never make that mistake again.

And in a touch of irony, a reproduction of Starry Night Over the Rhone happens to be my current laptop skin.
Parabuteo78 Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I love this!
Being Dutch myself, it always annoys me when someone pronounces it wrong. I always correct people by saying it should sound like loch when you say van Gogh.

Great likeness and I love the fact that he would deliver sunflowers!
That's brilliant - love it!
FFA Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2011
does modern science yet have the cure for a pun?
Himmapaan Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2011  Professional Traditional Artist
I fear not. :D
dana-redde Featured By Owner Oct 26, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Not gonna lie, until the Doctor Who episode with Van Gogh, I had no idea my Yankee mouth was mispronouncing it--and in that episode, they pronounce it pretty crudely as "goff!" It's one of those words/names that is mispronounced so often, most people assume you're wrong if you pronounce it correctly. Not that I buy that as an excuse; I figure in such a global world as ours, we ought to at least make an effort to pronounce things properly, even if it offends our pampered English tongues. English of all languages shouldn't be fussy!

On asimilar note, now that I've studied Russian, it makes my teeth grind to hear people pronounce Khrushchev as "kroosh-shev" (or even "koo-shrev"!)
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