Golden Gate Bridge at Night

Here’s a painting from my old hometown. This is the Golden Gate Bridge very late at night from Crissy Field lagoon.

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I’ve been experimenting with using a mix of lifting preparation and gum arabic mixed with water as a resist to keep light areas. Gum arabic gives softer edges but is much more idiosyncratic in the way it works.
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The foreground is really almost black, but I wanted to start with the darkest shadows.
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The problem here is that I had too long of a hiatus working on this and the frisket dried too much and didn’t remove cleanly. For me, there is usually a stage in a watercolor where it really looks just terrible.
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Beginning to put in the bridge, and the foreground darks.
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A very dark wash added to the sky. The areas between the wires in the bridge are getting gummed up and the thing is looking very messy. I hate that.
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Some clean up, but the bloody painting is still sort of a mess.
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Fortunately there’s gouache paint! Gouache is watercolor to which has been added chalk to make it opaque. In watercolor, the paper is the white, but in gouache, one uses white paint and – you can COVER UP STUFF!!!
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This is several layers later, addressing various areas of interest one at a time. Every part of the painting has been gone over at least a little. And now I’m using Chinese white for the stars.
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4 thoughts on “Golden Gate Bridge at Night

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