There are several symbols that represent how fleeting life truly is, how quickly it can pass. Bubbles are one of the best examples, I think. Hourglasses are an obvious indication of the passage of time. Skulls are a symbol of what will come to all of us eventually. Flowers can symbolize the beautiful parts of life, but that beauty is only temporary. We are to enjoy it while we have it.
Here is my first attempt at a vanitas image.
What do you think of it, both this particular image and the whole idea of this style called 'vanitas'?
"vanitas." Dictionary Definitions. LoveToKnow, n.d. Web. 18 May 2011.