Thursday, January 13, 2011

Sunset Gondola Ride in Venice

This is oil on 36x26 stetched canvas. It is based on a picture my grandmother took at least a decade and a half ago when she visited Venice. When I visited my grandmother this summer, we were looking at her old photo albums, this picture caught my eyes because of the strong contrast of the bright sunset vs darker boat, building and water. Of course being in Venice is a plus.

I first did an underpainting using thinned oil paint, so it bascially looked like as if it were painted with water color. The successive layers of thicker paints were added, mostly for the lighter tone areas such as sky and water, while keeping most of the darker tone areas, such as the background buildings, boats, tourists and boatmen, with the thin layer of underpainting showing.

So after three months of careful work, I think I'm finally done! I like the dramas in this final product: obviously light vs dark, but also thin vs thick paint, orange vs blue (complementary colors), the moving vs the still. Many thanks to Oxana who has been giving me honest feedback along the way.

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