Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Painting by the Gate of Hell

Tuesday morning, Robert and I decided to change things up. Since we both live in Astoria, it is easier for us to get to Astoria Park than Central Park. Every time Astoria Park comes to mind, I think of the great views of the Hell Gate Bridge and the Triborough Bridge (now called the RFK Bridge).
We hopped the rail down a 5 feet drop onto the bank of the East River. We found a spot where the tide was low and set up shop there, with a great view of the Hell Gate Bridge right in front.
Very excited about this location, I jumped right in to it. I think this may have been the best plein air session yet. It was great to be by the water and listening to the small waves break by us, bringing with it broken glass which in turn created beautiful sounds like tiny little bells ringing.
After a rough sketch I began to fill in the sky, my latest obsession! I kept thinking about Eakins and his depictions of sky and water.
My canvas was larger than usual, and there's a reason for that. I will be working on this painting on site for two sessions, and will work some more on it in my studio. So far I have blocked in all the shapes and tones, in the coming days I will fine tune it more. As we worked, Robert drawing and I painting, we got to see a lot of boat action accompanied by the low rumbling of traffic up above on the Triborough Bridge. I took some video to try and capture the morning.

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