Subtle usage of bright colors leads to the lovely illumination of the room. Coming to the people in the painting, all of them look cadaverous and it seems like they are inching to have a meal. The pillar behind the women with the coffee mug appears to support the whole building.
The picture actually depicts the life of the peasants who work hard to earn their meal. Van Gogh wants to portray that the hands used to take the potatoes from the plate are the ones that are used to dig it from the ground.
The Starry Night shows a night sky accompanied by whirling clouds and gleaming stars. There is a small town in the bottom of the picture and a huge dark structure to the left. The huge dark structure looks like thick black smoke emanating from some part of the town. Some may call it to be a tree. Only this section of the painting looks heavily dark. Rest of the painting looks extremely bright, thanks to the sparkling stars. The whirling cloud resembles the photograph of a star taken by the Hubble spacecraft a few years ago.
The Starry Night has the nature providing light whereas in The Potato Eaters it's an old oil lamp that lights the room. Though the light from the lamp is dim, it makes the room more attractive than the starry sky lit town. The lamplight gives life to the picture.
The Starry Night makes the viewer's eyes ...