Moving forward

Before I could really tackle the foreground on my Pescallo painting-in-progress, I needed to establish the background water. It shimmers with a pale sparkling light in the distance, the color becoming deeper and more varied in contrast as it moves in waves toward the viewer.


Lest I got too caught up in the romance of Italy or the gentle waves of Lake Como, my husband brings me back to reality with a screeching halt and a critique of my painting. His opinion is to flip the direction of the boat so that it leads into the painting rather than out. I have to agree with him here, so being the always obedient wife (ha ha) I do as I'm told.

Next, I really need to address what is happening on the pier so that I can paint the reflections in the foreground water. I paint the tires that hang along the pier and serve as a rustic contrast to the elegant beauty of the backdrop. This epitomizes Pescallo to me; it is rustic but beautiful, quaint but elegant, sleepy but exciting, all at the same time. The tires are in higher contrast on the sunny side and in low contrast in the shadows.

Black is not black and white is never white. By this I mean that I don't use a tube black to paint black-colored objects, or a straight out of the tube white for most white-colored objects. This would create very flat, dead color. Instead, I mix my "blacks" with my darkest translucent colors on my palette, ultramarine blue and alizarin crimson, and just the tiniest bit of cad. orange or yellow to neutralize some of that purple undertone.

Flowers and flowering vines grow out of every crack and cranny around these parts, and I paint those in delicately so as not to overpower. The showy flowers will be the geraniums and bougainvillea to come.

School is back in session, which means that our babysitter has become a lot less available now that she's returned to college classes. It also means I will have less time to paint over the next two weeks until my daughter returns to preschool. I didn't get the time to paint outside last week, but my goal is to finish this studio piece with one more session tomorrow, so that I can still fit in a plein air session by week's end. I'm close...wish me luck!