An early cold morning is a good time to paint in the park.
I went to the plaza de Marmol because I was there the day before. The previous day, this beautiful little plaza was full of bright red geraniums. When I got there the next day, the gardeners had pulled all the flowers and I had a completely different scene to paint.
Although I was really looking forward to painting this fountain with red flowers, I decided that the Retiro Park gardeners would be fun to paint. While I was painting, it started drizzling more and more. I hurriedly finished the watercolor with pen and ink and decided I would come back another day.
Capricho park in Madrid is a gorgeous historic park. I signed up for this fast-painting competition because I like to paint in the parks here in Madrid and this one is fabulous.
I set up in front of a fountain. Painting fountains are my favorite subject matter in the park. I like to hear the water trickling and try to capture the look of it as it falls. The water sparkles and glitters as it falls and this is what I like. Here is a picture of the fountain. It’s a simple, yet beautiful fountain.
The photograph doesn’t even come close to the stunning variety of green colors.
The painting competition was from 9 to 2. Usually, I can never finish a painting in such a short time. I tried really hard to finish this time or a least to make it look finished. Below is a photo of my painting.
I turned in the painting on time and although I didn’t win any prizes, I am happy to say that my painting was selected for the exhibition.
I was number 40.
Here it is hanging on the wall at Cultural Center Gloria Fuertes in Madrid. It will be hanging there until the 25th of November 2022.
Here is a little clip so you can see the ambiance of the Capricho Park Fast Painting Competition.
For me, remembering everything about the human figure isn’t like riding a bicycle. I felt a bit of ‘people in perspective rustiness’, so I picked up an Andrew Loomis book and started to study ‘Figure Drawing For All It’s Worth’. Yup, that’s the name of the book. If I could go back in time and tell my younger self what to study to improve my art skills, I would tell myself to study the book I just mentioned by Andrew Loomis. I recently discovered it and I am going to share a little drawing I made of the Puerta del Sol in Madrid, Spain.
This is one of my favorite small watercolors. It is my favorite because I had a fun time while I was drawing and painting it. It was right after the crazy snowfall we had here in Madrid. It was freezing cold outside and hardly anyone was outside because of the Pandemic. I was sitting in a cafe on the rooftop of Callao with my one and only art student who was brave enough to go out once a week and paint Madrid with me. I think this kept us sane in an insane time of confinement and uncertainty. I remember our conversation that day as if it were yesterday. That is what is so special about painting the moment. Watercolor is like a long photograph and you remember everything.
I have a little clip of the moment when I finished the painting. You can see it if you click here.
The Mediterranean wildflowers that I painted in this red vintage bottle show up in the spring, and add little dashes of color around my neighborhood. Every year I try to get them to grow on my terrace. Sometimes I succeed. This year, I got the little violet flowers, a few poppies, and little white daisies to grow in a pot on my terrace. I got this red vintage bottle at a second-hand store in San Diego. I love to paint it over and over again with the pretty flowers I find in Madrid.
I just finished this painting today; it’s still wet. When the colors dry and settle down. I will varnish it and take another picture. Thank you for reading my little story. Enjoy the colorful flowers around you too.