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.
I really like this fountain a lot. It is incredibly beautiful with the Nymphs holding up the dish with dolphin-like sea creatures at their feet. This fountain has always had water shooting out of the spouts as far as I remember. I was looking forward to painting the doves that bathe on the rim of the dish. When I got there, the water had been turned off for so long that a family of feral cats was hanging around in the pond and there was a recent litter of kittens. I’m almost afraid to see what it looks like now.
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.
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.
La Fuente de Narciso in Aranjuez is a beautiful fountain hidden away in the Parque del Príncipe. I’ve been there many times to paint on site.
Fuente de Narciso June 2018 Small watercolor 14x19cm 5.5×7.5 in
Mythology: Narciso was a very attractive young man who had all the attention of all the girls, but he ignored them all. One, The nimph Eco, came out of the forest with her open arms, he cruelly shunned her so she hid away in a cave until all that was left of her was the eco of her voice.
The goddess of vengeance, Nemesis, punished Narciso by making him fall in love with his own image reflecting in a fountain. Unable to separate from his reflection, he threw himself into the water. And from the very place he fell a beautiful flower grew to honor him.
Here you can see the size. It’s a small watercolor.
Yes, indeed, this fountain is amazing to paint. That day the fountain was off. It’s even more amazing when it’s on.