The Painter Themes & Motifs

Peter Heller
This Study Guide consists of approximately 81 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Painter.
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Nature as Refuge

Throughout the novel, the protagonist and narrator Jim Stegner is attempting to find peace within himself and his world, which he sees clearly can be found in Nature. He has become a fisherman in part because water - and being immersed in it - is where he can lose himself in his surroundings and feels most alive. He meditates on Nature while he thinks and his best paintings depict the natural world. In his new home, he can do so by simply walking out onto the porch to have a smoke, which he does frequently.

Since he was a young man, Stegner as "Knotty" the surfer kid has been willing to throw himself into the natural world and let it have its way with him. When he thinks of his daughter, it isn't in Santa Fe, but rather in the river or in the...

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This section contains 1,552 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Painter Study Guide
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