Monumento a Alfonso XII, Madrid

This is a small studio painting of the artificial lake in the Retiro Park. I can’t wait to be able to walk in the Retiro Park again.

Monumento a Alfonso XII Retiro Park Madrid 2020

The marble and bronze Monument to Alfonso XII, designed by Josè Grases Riera is located in the Buen Retiro Park in Madrid. It is 30 meters high, 86 meters long, and 58 meters wide. At its center is the equestrian statue of King Alfonso XII, cast in Bronze, which was created by Benlliure in 1904.

A watercolor of poppies and daisies with little purple or violet flowers in a pickle jar.

Poppies and Daisies in Pickle Jar 2019

In the spring I like to paint the wild flowers since they are so colorful and my favorite painting theme.

A picture of a watercolor in process. You can see a light grid, pencil drawing and red watercolor paint of poppies.

I started off with a grid and a light drawing, then I started putting in the poppies.

Since I’m painting from life, I put in the poppies first before they wilt.

A watercolor of red poppies, daisies and a glass jar in the process of making.

The next step I take is painting all over the paper since all the shapes and colors influence each other.

Then I start putting in other flowers, not forgetting about the equally important background which includes the glass pickle jar.

A picture of a watercolor almost finished. You can see red poppies, white daisies with a touch of purple or violet flowers in a glass pickle jar.

Here I am almost finished. Just putting in the finishing touches. Not too many.

The watercolor is almost finished here.  I paint what I see and leave a lot of the white of the paper.

A watercolor of poppies and daisies with little purple or violet flowers in a pickle jar.
Here it is finished. Poppies and Daisies in Pickle Jar 2019 Watercolor on Arches 300gsm 19×28 cm – 7.5×11 in

This year the wild flower season was brief.  Less rain, less flowers…

 

Watercolor of Mormon Temple. A white temple with a cloudy carmen and blue sky with puffy clouds. Cypress trees in front of a red brick wall and leaves falling in the foreground on the left.

Temple LDS in Madrid, Spain – Small Plein Air Watercolor.

I went out to see the LDS Temple in person to do a few quick watercolors to see which one I wanted to paint on a full size sheet.  The facade is beautiful and angel Moroni is on top blowing a trumpet. I painted this before going into the courtyard.

Watercolor of Mormon Temple. A white temple with a cloudy carmen and blue sky with puffy clouds. Cypress trees in front of a red brick wall and leaves falling in the foreground on the left.

Templo LDS 2016 

 Inside the courtyard the Garden, El Jardín de las Novias, is symmetrical. There is a beautiful flower garden with white, pink and red flowers flanking a double dish water fountain with a round pond.  That side of the Temple contrasts with this serious solemn side with inviting cypress trees.

 

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.

 

A small watercolor of California Wildflowers Yellow orange, blue, violet and pink small flowers

California Wild Flowers

California Wild Flowers 2014

A small watercolor of California Wildflowers Yellow orange, blue, violet and pink small flowers

California Wild Flowers 2014 Watercolor on Arches 300 gsm 16.5×12 cm “6.4×4.7”

The last time I was in California, I got a sack of wild flower seeds and planted them on my terrace.  It took a couple of months and these dainty little yellow, blue, pink, violet and white flowers all started blooming at once. I like to paint them.  

Plein air painting of a small village by the sea near Malaga, Spain.

Plein Air Painting

I love plein air painting because it’s like keeping a memory on paper.  I was at my cousin’s place and had an amazing time.

A watercolor of the Medeterranean sea with a cloudy sky and calm blue water the village below

The Medeterranean Sea March 2018

Both of these views are from my Cousin’s Place. 

A watercolor of a porch with white stone railing overlooking the Medeterranean Sea.

Martina’s Porch March 2018

We also went to El Chorro in Malaga.

Watercolor of El Chorro and the background sky and mountain.

El Chorro March 2018

I had been to El Chorro before, but this time I came prepared to paint it.  It was a bit cloudy and was raining here and there. It was a fantastic Family reunion.

La Fuente del Fauno de la Rosaleda in the Parque del Buen Retiro in Madrid, Spain

The Dolphin Fountain Madrid, Spain 2017
Fuente del Faunito en la Rosaleda Madrid, Spain

La Fuente del Fauno is the name of this classic style fountain of mythological motif. I focused on the base of the fountain so I could paint the roses with the dolphins.  I’ve read that the origin of the fountain is unknown.  Below is the painting process or sessions.

The Dolphine Fountain

Session 8

Each session is more or less three to four hours.

Session 7

Session 7

The Dolphine Fountain6

The Dolphine Fountain 6

The Dolphine Fountain5

Session 5

The Dolphine Fountain4

Session 4

The Dolphine Fountain3

Session 3

The Dolphine Fountain2

Session 2

The Dolphine Fountain1

Session 1

 

The Divine Comedy

Dante’s Inferno Canto VI (13-15) Cerberus 2016 – Oil on canvas –

Canto VI Cerberus 2016

The Divine Comedy (Illustration)

Dante awakens in the 3rd circle.

Cold dirty rain-fall, mixing with heavy hailstones, pounding down, finally, streaking the nude bodies of the condemned souls lying supine in the filthy mud.  (epic poetry of Dante Alighieri)

Cerberus, the three-headed, dog-like worm beast stands over the souls clawing at the slightest movement made by the supine lying in the filth.

The process of the painting is below.

 

 

Drawing for Canto VI

Drawing for Canto VI

 I did a few drawings like this one above and a watercolor.

 

Canto VI Cerberus 2015

Canto VI Cerberus 2015

Next, I painted a similar version on a canvas with egg tempera to start with.

On Canvas

On Canvas

I started building up shape and color

Egg tempera

Egg tempera

 Then I changed my mind about something

 

Building up the shapes

Building up the shapes

I wanted a frontal view of the mouth

Almost finished

I put everything more or less where I wanted it

The Divine Comedy

Canto VI (13-15) Cerberus 2016

And then I changed my mind again

That’s what I like about art

 

Open Air Painting of The Lds Temple in June 2017 Madrid, Spain

 

This is the largest plein air watercolor I have done so far.   It was quite an adventure.

First Day

The fountain was dry when I got there.  I asked the gardener if it would have water soon.

The gardener told me that they were cleaning  it but that he would turn it on the following morning so I could paint it with water.

Fuente del Jardin de las Novias

  The next morning the fountain had its beautiful cascade!

In process

There was a heat wave in Madrid and the sky turned a dark, almost purple color that I didn’t want to paint.  I was waiting for the sky to turn light blue again.

Just finished

 

Finally the sky was blue like the first day and once I got everything in place, I stopped painting.

 

My friends with Painting 2017

Painting the Lds Temple was a really nice experience. I made two new friends A and J.  They told me a lot of interesting things about the Temple and gave me a beautiful book related to the Temple.

There’s nothing like painting in Madrid