Sunday, March 2, 2008

Making decisions

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This painting is another of my Italy series based on my trip and photos from Aug./Sept. I loved this image of a lovely gentleman drenched by sunlight. The photo was taken in Vernazza in the Cinque Terra where the village streets are lined with these umbrellaed outdoor cafes. The photo I took has no wine glass, but I wanted to tell a story, so added the wine.

I had completed the figure and the loosely implied pots with plants yesterday. I chose a very dark background behind the figure to emphasize the man. Then I stopped short of completing the upper portion of the diagonally placed umbrella. My questions were about the colors to use, whether to make stripes or not, and how to apply the paint to help tell the story but not overwhelm the importance of the figure.

After mulling it over during the evening and perhaps even dreaming about it, this is how I completed it this morning. Below the image, I'll include my decision making process.

It Was a Good Year
18 x 21
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I decided to use a striped pattern because for me it creates a sense of place. I did not want the stripes to be precise and become dominant, so I painted them loosely, wet into wet. The painting is unified by warm colors, so the stripes continue with the browns, reds and grayed down blue, which is created by adding burnt sienna to the cobalt blue.

All in all, I think it's a successful painting that tells a story. As always comments are very welcome.

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Anonymous said...

Would you post the photo this was adapted from?

Anonymous said...

Loved what you did with the lovely gentleman. The umbrella really works for me. I love it when you describe things like the dark background colors and why and the uneven stripes in the umbrella. I love the story this tells.