In June I traveled to Italy with a group of family members, including 2 nieces. Of course, I have many photos, but I was drawn to an idea based on several photos I took in Ovieto. My long-legged American nieces were walking along the same street with some short and stout Italian nuns. All were dressed in white and black, so the theme of "Sisters" was irresistible.
Since I am working in a more realistic style for awhile as a way to ease into my more abstract work, these Italian photos are perfect inspiration.
Here is the drawing of the concept--two pairs of "sisters" in a shadowed street, with sun bleached buildings on the left, providing contrast potential.
I began the painting with an under painting of all areas that will be in the shade.
The next step was painting all the darker areas, including the figures skin tones--warm tans for the nieces, cooler protected skin for the nuns.
At this point, I have added some details, darkened areas, but have left the figures blank.
After putting several washes on the street, I have a very buckled paper, so I wet it down on the back and stapled it down on a board.
The painting is almost done at this point, but I've waited to put a pattern on the backpack and bag the nun is carrying. I want something to tie them together and add a modern feel against the old Italian background.
You'll see I stuck with the black and white. After adding the zebra print for a whimsical element, I had to go back to other areas to add more dark and readjust so that the zebra print didn't "stick out" too much.
Sisters 18 x 21
I'd love to hear your thoughts about the painting--critiques are always welcome.