Portraits of his daughter in Mylnikov’s work have a special place. He constantly returns to this image, admiring purity, spontaneity, girlish grace. And, perhaps, few of contemporary artists have managed to convey so intimately the complexity and immediacy of the child’s world. In the works “Verochka is sick” (1955), “Verochka” (1955), “Portrait of a daughter” (1957), “Sick Verochka” (1958), “Portrait of Verochka” (1965), “Verochka at the Window” (1965), “Verochka” (1971) the image is developed in time.
In these portraits, kindly contemplative, the mood of an artist who admires the model admiringly is always felt. He does not fix, but creates a seen, experienced, felt childish image, which captures and remains in memory for a long time as dear and close to everyone. Life-affirming, joyful attitude is penetrated by the portrait of “Verochka in the Country” (1957), rightfully ranked among the best works of Mylnikov. The artist writes a flexible figure of a girl with a thin neck, dark silky hair, a falling pigtail on her back. Vera is sitting at the table by the window. The light child figure is turned in profile, hands for a moment are put on the table. The ingenuous simplicity and clarity of the image find a response in the entire color scheme of the canvas.
In a later portrait of “Verochka” (1964) color is the main means of revealing the image, the nature of the model. Light coloristic scale, built on harmony, color nuances and gradations, creates a mood of inner balance, clarity and spiritual purity. Verochka is depicted at the table on the veranda. In front of her is an open book. It seems that the girl for a moment broke away from reading and, propping her chin with her hands, thinks about what she read.
The streams of warm air burst into the open window, the rays of bright sunlight slip through the hair, the figure of the child, illuminate the boardwalk, pour out with delicate colors in a bouquet on the table. “Colors, like sounds, collide and create a mood…” says the artist. “In color, the meaning of the picture can be decided.”