Friday, February 25, 2011

The Former Rock Island Passenger Depot

The Painting - This wonderful structure was built circa 1905 and still stands today just south of downtown Waxahachie. It was formerly the T&VB depot, later becoming the Rock Island Passenger Depot. Today it is owned by the Nay Company. I started this en plein aire watercolor towards dusk last Sunday. While I'm not totally happy with it, I learned a few things along the way and I hope to try this same location again during the annual "Paint Waxahachie" event in late May/early June.

Tip - using black for shadowy areas is not nearly as interesting as cool blues and purples.

People I met - nice families dressed white shirts, khaki shorts and posing for photographers were all over the place. And one guy dressed in a Sonic the Hedgehog outfit running down these same tracks while another guy filmed him. No idea... don't even ask. This part of town is very popular for photographers with two old bridges and two restored depots for backdrops. 

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Painting on the Square

The Painting - I finished this one in about 2 hours en plein aire on the Square last Saturday afternoon in Waxahachie. I'm finally figuring out how to say more by painting less. The windows here are mostly just wild strokes of a fat brush rather than my usual struggle to make them look perfect. I like the sky on this. I always start with the sky.

Tip - speaking of sky - it's difficult, if not impossible, to rework a sky in watercolor and is best left to the unprofessionals. I put in a light yellow wet in wet wash - let it dry - and threw on the blue.

People I met - a man pulled up in his car and asked me if I do paintings. He told me his brother had recently died and he wanted a giant portrait done from a photo for his mom. I always feel kind of bad saying no but there's just too much pressure involved in commissioned pieces. Especially if they are for surviving loved ones.