La Placa Reial watercolour paintings

Although I’ve finished my plein-air DIY watercolour project that I previewed last week, I’d really like to you to be able to see it ‘in action’ so I’m going to wait for some more clement weather before I photograph it.
In the meantime though, as I couldn’t wait to try out my new set up, here are the first paintings to come off my new easel.
I’ve been mainly painting on half imperial sheets recently and have slightly mixed feelings about downsizing to quarter sheets again. At the back of my mind however is a forthcoming exhibition in May. Ideally, I do need to have a greater mix of larger and smaller works to show than I have currently, so any quarter sheets that I’m able to complete will be really beneficial. This view is of La Place Reial in Barcelona, which I’ve painted before but not of this exact view.
Here’s my first effort, which was done quite hurriedly:
Morning Deliveries, La Placa Reial, Barcelona (1), a watercolour painting by John Haywood
Morning Deliveries, La Placa Reial, Barcelona (1)

I was quite pleased with this, and enjoyed painting it, but felt that with a little more thought and concentration, it could be improved on:

Morning Deliveries, La Placa Reial, Barcelona (2), a watercolour painting by John Haywood
Morning Deliveries, La Placa Reial, Barcelona (2)
 I think these two paintings illustrate why I enjoy painting views more than once. I know that others may find it repetitive but I find it really interesting. Even though they’re of the same view, and very similar composition, the two paintings ‘feel’ entirely different. I like the looseness and the warmth of the first once, achieved from using more light red and raw sienna in the initial washes, whereas the second one I purposefully painted much cooler with mainly blues and greys.
Of the two, the second one is my preferred painting. I still think some of the handling is a little heavy in places, especially compared to the first one, but I think it has a greater sense of depth, that the overall proportions of all the elements are better, and the foreground figure is stronger.
To be honest though, these paintings both felt like sub-plots to the main story – the new easel! It was great to paint on and, even though I’m not sure when it will happen, I’m really excited about the prospect of trying it out ‘in the field’.

Thoughts on La Placa Reial watercolour paintings

6 thoughts on “La Placa Reial watercolour paintings”

  1. Regina Roseman Tune

    i have painted the same view by the James River about 100 times- always something new to find and it is like an old friend I know well, which saves a lot of time in plein air!

    1. Hi Regina and yes, I completely understand and a favourite view being like an old friend is such a good analogy – that’s exactly how I feel about some of the scenes that I return to again and again!

I'd love to hear any thoughts you have about this

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