This painting is out of the norm for me; for a long time, I stuck with portraits. Faces fascinate me. After seeing a friend’s beautiful piece of Venice, though, I got seduced by the light and had to give it a shot myself.
I’m not sure how I feel about this one. I had some trouble deciding what to include – certain things, like the backdrop of picturesque and crumbling buildings in my reference material, work in the photograph but will completely mess up a painting. I ended up only using the boat with the figures and creating a suggestion of some of the poles and railings that were in the original. If I’d been able to trace any of it, I might have tried to put in some of the architecture, but I don’t trust myself with that! I also had some trouble with the colors – I had originally wanted the coloring of the water to be more faithful to the photo, with more dark blues, but the light of the quinacridone gold was too enticing. I ended up having to lift a fair amount of ultramarine that I’d dropped into the left side and was just sitting there, looking awkward. Live and learn.
So it’s not perfect, but it makes me want to be on that boat, and for the moment, that’s okay with me.
Image © Allison Wachtel 2010.