David Wilsher -
painting a wet day in Venice
To start the year, January’s subject was an acrylic painting demonstration of a seasonably rainy day in Venice with wet cobbles, puddles, umbrellas, and atmospheric reflections of a city that most of us think of in warm Italian sunshine.
David, who runs holiday courses in Venice and knows the city well, started with blank canvas paper on which he floated a burnt umber,
light wash, providing the mid tones needed for the painting as it progressed.
From the reference photograph taken in situ, with a brush he drew out the shapes required for the composition - no details at all to worry about at this stage.
Having found the essential shapes he blocked in the main colour areas using a large brush before adding a few basic suggestions of details as a foundation for more visual information later on.
When the painting started to take shape, David introduced some figures, appropriately with umbrellas – and even a little dog on a lead – plus more detail work on puddles, cobbles and the buildings.
Within an hour and a half, there appeared a beautiful, evocative image of a wet day in this wonderful city and for a finishing touch to his demonstration, David placed the painting into a frame - a grand finale to a brilliant and inspiring morning for members.
Top tips for members who would like to experiment:
👍Use a canvas paper pad - inexpensive and ideal for acrylic paints
👍Make use of a wet palette – you can make your own with a spongy base in a sealable flat plastic box or find one in an art shop. This helps to keep your paints wet for longer.
👍No need to use expensive brushes – look for bargain bunches of synthetic brushes.
👍Flat brushes are great for straight edges – windows, doors, roof tops etc.
👍Avoid detailed work – be bold.
👍For reflections use vertical strokes
👍Use the paint wet and moderately runny – airbrush medium is good to help the paint bond to the canvas.
If you'd like to see more of David's work and find out about his painting courses in Venice, you'll find lots of information on his website at www.davidwilsher.com