A line and watercolor wash over pen and ink of the Crystal Palace.

Line and Wash Watercolor of El Palacio de Cristal in the Retiro Park.

 The Crystal Palace was invented by Ricardo Velazquez Bosco, built in 1887.  It has a high dome in the center which is almost 23 meters high.  Since 1990 it has been an annex of the Reina Sofia Museum of Contemporary Art.  It is located in the Retiro Park in Madrid, Spain.

A line drawing of the Crystal Palace in the Retiro Park. You can see the palace with water in front and lots of trees.

Palacio de Cristal 2018

A line and watercolor wash over pen and ink of the Crystal Palace.

Palacio de Cristal 2018

While I was painting, lots of different tourist groups came to see this beautiful metallic building from my same view-point.  I once overheard an old man talking about this being the best spot to see the Crystal Palace so I came here to paint this line and wash watercolor.There’s nothing like painting in Madrid.

 

My Watercolor Exhibition Experience at Arte Studio in Madrid May-June 2017

I realised that I had to focus.  First I got a body of watercolors together 2014 to 2016.

 

cartel_expo_victoria

Here’s a short clip of the watercolors in the show and a few pictures.

 

Paseo del Prado August 2016

A street view of the Paseo del Prado in August 2016

Three Glass Bottles with Pear 2014

When I got together around 50 watercolors, I started matting them.

 

summer-melon-with-red-bottle-2016

Summer Melon with Red Bottle 2016 – Watercolor on Arches 640 GMS – 20 x 16 inch ( 50.8 x 40.6 cm) – Swiss Clip Frameless Frame with Plexi-glass Ready to Hang

This is the style I used for presentation – A beige mat with plexi-glass and swiss clips.

 

Inauguration 2017

 

Once it was all set up, the show looked really nice.  I Saw a lot of family and friends I hadn’t seen for a long time as well as meeting new friends.

 

Flor, Victoria and Cani

Flor, Victoria and Cani

Although it was very hard work, it was something I wanted to do and I’m glad it happened.

 

The light in Madrid, Spain is always inspiring.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three Still Life Watercolors

Vibrant color and immediacy is what I like the most about the watercolor medium.  consistent practice is important whether inspired or not.

Vase 1a

I start with the idea of putting the exact shape and color.

 I use a grid here to keep my parallel lines parallel. I paint little pieces at a time so I can transfer the color and shape exactly as I see it.

Vase 1b

I work around the paper always going to a blank part on the paper instead of building up any one area.

I want the painting to have balance, so work on different areas going to opposite places on the paper and touching the corners as well.

Vase 1c

Since I used an a la prima technique, I stopped when the surface of the paper was covered.

I was happy with how it turned out, so I did two more water colors the same day.

Vase 2a

I started out with a diamond grid.

Even though I wanted to use the same exact technique, I didn’t.  I painted larger areas and didn’t work around the paper.  The left side is too heavy for starting off.

Vase 2b

Finished Watercolor

Since it was too heavy on the left side, I automatically tried to balance it out by making the right side heavy too. I finished quickly to start again.

Vase 3a

Started out with my favorite part.

 I focused on the flower and built around it, trying not to fill in large areas to start with.

Vase 3b

Working around the paper.

I wanted to give the same importance to every object but I got hung up on the white rose and gave it too much attention neglecting the glass work.

Vase 3c

Finished Watercolor

No matter how many times I paint this motif, there is always something new and different in each flower and reflection.

Small Watercolors of Flowers in Vases

I like to paint small watercolors of colorful flowers and transparent glass filled with water.

Bouquet in Crystal VAse 1994

Bouquet in Crystal Vase 1994

These small still-life paintings date back from the 90’s to  the present 2016.  

They are all post card size 5.5”x 7.5”or smaller.  I started off making this size in the mid-eighties to send as post cards.

Almond Blossom in Raku Pinch Pot

Almond Blossoms in Raku Pinch Pot

Almond Blossoms are really nice to paint.  In the spring there are a lot of these trees in Madrid.  I sent this watercolor to my Mom.  When I go to California I see it on the wall.

Pea Flowers in Purple Vase

Sweet Pea Flowers in Purple Vase

 I remember visiting someone who had sweet peas growing in their vegetable garden, I couldn’t resist taking some home to paint them. I’m going to have to get some sweet pea seeds.

Red Bottle with Ceramic Dish 1994

Red Bottle with Ceramic Dish and Irises 1999

The Red Bottle is one of my favorites. I bought it in the mid-eighties at the Salvation Army in the Gaslamp Quarter when I was living in sunny San Diego.  I’m always on the look out for beautiful glass bottles and vases.

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Red Bottle, kumquats and Sugar Bowl 1998

This watercolor is wet on wet with my favorite red  bottle.

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kumquats and Glass Bottle with Pinch Pot 1998

 What I like the most about glass are the reflections; especially clear glass with water in it.

Red Bottle with REd Flowers 1998

Red Bottle with Red Flowers 1998

I paint a lot; not everything turns out.  It doesn’t matter.  I like to include everything I see around my model.

Bouganville in Purple Vase 2011

Bougainvillea in Purple Vase 2011

I go to California often, almost every year.  I like to paint the flowers in my Mother’s garden.  Bougainvillea is so fun to paint.

Bouganville in Crystal Vase 2011

Bougainvillea in Crystal Vase 2011

Sometimes I paint the motif twice.  Here I changed the vase.  I like this vase; I like the fact that you can see the stems and leaves in the water.

Roses in Crystal vase 2011

Roses in Crystal Vase 2011

Here is the vase again with my Mom’s beautiful roses.

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Glass Bottles on Shelf 2012

I like colored glass. They have everything I like, color, shape, transparency and reflection. 

RedRoses in Greek Vase 2015

Red Roses in Greek Vase 2015

Someone gave me this vase.  I think it’s beautiful with the vertical grooves imitating a greek column.  This one got sent off in the mail.

Red Roses in Glass Vase 2015

Red Roses in Glass Vase 2015

I like to do more than one painting to try a different view.

Poppies in May 2016

Poppies in May 2016

When the spring comes around, I go a little crazy.  I can’t stop painting.  Spring is such a bright season full of color and warmth.

Poppies, Daisies and Red Roses 2015

Poppies, Daisies and Roses 2015

You can really see the difference of the light in the spring.

Red Glass Bottle with Orange Poppies 2016

Red Glass Bottle with Orange Poppies 2016

These are California Poppies and wild flowers.  I brought the seeds from California and planted them here in Madrid. I recently sent this one to my Dad.

Small Red Bottle with Wildflowers2016

Small Red Bottle with Wild Flowers 2016

I wanted to paint my model with the reflection in the mirror and on the table.

Chartreuse Bottle with California Wild Flowers 2016 B

Chartreuse Bottle with California Wild Flowers 2016

This is the latest small watercolor.  A friend told me that the color of  this bottle is chartreuse.

 I’m glad she told me.  I had never heard of that color.  Thanks to her the title isn’t yellow bottle with wild flowers, but Chartreuse Bottle with California Wild Flowers. 🙂

 

 

My Favorite Bottles

My Favorite Bottles is the first watercolor I painted of this series with the same name.

with model

This is a large piece of paper, so I taped it to the table.

This series was about painting the bottles in different places in the house.

In process

The paper is very wet.

The technique I used here was wet on wet.

My Favorite Bottle 2014

My Favorite Bottle 2014

I no longer have  this painting.

Bottles in a Corner 2015

This painting is from a series called My Favorite Bottles.

I started this series in 2015.  I painted the bottles in a different place in the house everyday.

The purpose of this blog is to remember the steps in making the painting.

Wetting Watercolor Paper with Brush 2015

Wetting Watercolor Paper with Brush 2015

Starting a Watercolor 2015

Marking the placement of glass bottles on the format.

Watercolor in Process 2015

Putting in the color and contrast; trying for an a la prima.

Bottles in a Corner 2015

I love painting colorful glass bottles.

 

Red Glass Vase with California Wild Flowers

I planted some California wild flowers in May, so I’ve been painting them.  They are small delicate flowers.  So I put them in a small vase.

Still -life Drawing and Model

Here is the still -life of the glass vase and California wild flowers. I carefully drew it out to make sure everything fit on this tiny format.

 

Light Painting

At this stage I try for an a la prima; putting in the pure contrasting darks and saturated colors in one shot. I try to move around the paper, not concentrating too much on any area.

 

Building Up

Building up color and contrast; trying not to invent anything.

Building Darks

I start building up the darks, so the light can be seen.

Contrasting

Here, I’m looking for contrast; trying to bring out the light.

Red Glass Vase with California Wild Flowers 2016

Red Glass Vase with California Wild Flowers 2016