Revisiting France!

City of light 2, by frankeber 2011           City of light, by frankeber 2011

I know, I always say that I don’t like sunset paintings. The main reason is that they don’t seem to work very well in watercolor. These are two semi sunsets, sort of like the late light in the day. They are just made for watercolor, for the simple reason that the buildings are backlit. That way, you’re really just painting the silhouttes.

I found that although I didn’t paint in lots of windows, they still seem to be there! I am banking on the fact that the eyes of the viewer put them in, so to speak. There seem to be many details but it really is all just an illusion. I even omitted the headlights on the car and it works just fine..

On of the most difficult things in painting is to simplify objects so they still tell the story without looking overworked. If you paint a building with 20 windows and put them all in, just like in the photograph, your work will look stilted and tight.

How do you do it? By treating every single shape as part of the whole painting. How important is the window in the overall design of the painting? Not very…So, a simple suggestion with one or two brushstrokes is enough! What’s really important is the shape of the building! That has to be painted right.

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4 thoughts on “Revisiting France!

  1. lesliepaints

    I like both of these a lot, Frank, but am really drawn to the second one. Something about that huge blocky building in the back ground and the light bouncing off the car in the foreground. I know. I know. Less is more but what really tops off that second painting is the more detailed streetlight in the foreground capturing the light bouncing off the car. Beautiful!

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