As we were due to be in Valencia this week – it seems appropriate to post something Spanish. I can’t quite recall what set this particular thought pattern in motion – sometimes things just call out to you – on this occasion, it was palm trees.
I started off my research with one of my favourite watercolour artists, Ian Potts, recalling a wonderful palm tree painting that I’d seen – ‘cool shadows on a warm path‘. This painting was based on a view in Cartegena, in Spain. I’m not familiar with Cartegena but, after having a look at images of the city, I’d certainly like to become familiar with it!
I settled on an image on the harbour front that I thought I could make work, that would satisfy my palm tree craving and that would remind me of the country I’m ‘supposed’ to be in right now!
I really like scenes like this, largely I think because they’re quick to sketch out! I also really enjoyed painting this but, on completion, I couldn’t help thinking that I’d like to paint it again but this time to improve on a few areas.
I was mainly keen to get a little more contrast and interest in the sky. It doesn’t look too bad when back-lit on a screen, but in reality, I think it looks a little flat.
I was also keen to soften some of the edges. Whilst the sharpness and contrast may be accurate in some ways, I think their harshness is distracting.
As it was pretty quick to draw out, I felt compelled to have another go.
Overall, I’m much more satisfied with this second painting. What I often like about painting something twice, is how I feel more relaxed on the second version. I know that the ultimate would be to have the confidence and ability to feel relaxed on the first attempt – but I’m still some way off that – and that’s just fine!
The sky does have a more interest and I do like the softer harbour wall too. Other areas I’m a little less keen on, but these are mainly the secondary elements. I should say that I like the palm trees on both of these. I enjoyed painting them and, on the whole, they look like palm trees.
It’s nice to imagine that one day, I’ll get to visit Cartagena and see this view for myself.
New gallery pages
Whilst life has been more restricted of late. I had a little scoot around my website and was slightly horrified at what I found!
I discovered that my gallery pages didn’t include a single painting that I’d done in 2019. I was also a little underwhelmed at how they looked. Here, for a limited time only, is a link to my ‘old gallery pages‘. I’ll remove this link shortly but wanted to leave it live for a short while in case anyone would like to compare, contrast, and maybe even let me know what they think about my attempt to upgrade.
Here’s a link to my new gallery pages, I’ve decided to organise my paintings into landscapes, cityscapes and interiors. These broad categories cover just about everything except my sketches, which I think merit a section of their own – even if only for interest – but this will have to wait for another time!
As ever, I’d love to hear any thoughts, opinions or suggestions that anyone may have on these pages.
In the meantime, I hope that everyone is keeping safe, keeping well and keeping their distance.