Venetian buildings with watercolor

Venetian buildings along the canal

Let us now look at how to paint the Venetian buildings in the photograph. Firstly realise I do not aim for any photographic likeness in my work. I try to capture the atmosphere and key points of a location. For the Left Hand Side (LHS) walls I use Burnt Sienna and some Raw Umber for the wall color. I paint with quick strokes so as to leave some of the under wash showing through in places as little highlights.

Before the paint is full dry I drop in soft indications of the windows and doorways. I use French Ultramarine and Burnt Sienna for this.  When this wall is dry I use a thicker mix of French Ultramarine and Burnt Sienna to give sharper edges to the doors and windows. I also use the side of my brush to create some of these shapes with dry brush strokes to give them slightly indefinite edges.

Painting textured Venetian buildings with watercolor
Figure 6: Painting textured Venetian buildings with watercolor

After painting the roofs of the buildings on the Right Hand Side (RHS) with some Permanent Alizarin Crimson and Burnt Sienna I then paint the walls on the right hand side. I add some Cobalt Blue to the mix used on the left hand side walls to create a cooler grey color. I also use more water in the mix to make sure the tone of this wall is lighter than the one on the LHS.  As with the walls on the LHS I repeat the steps to put in window and door shapes.

The railing silhouette on Venetian buildings
Figure 7: The railing silhouette on Venetian buildings

With some Burnt Sienna and French Ultramarine, and some Cobalt Blue I paint in the silhouette of railings and overhangs on both the inner facing edges of both the LHS and RHS walls, above the bridge.

Continue to: Painting the bridge and shadows with watercolor  – step 6