Last summer when I was at an antiques market in Ostuni, in Puglia I went for a walk and passed this little street. It seemed almost to be too pretty to be true.
Ostuni is a lovely town where almost all the houses are white.
I had not considered painting this before, because I thought the photo was just perfect, so how could I create something better .
But because of my new found confidence and desire to keep pushing myself to see if I can actually create the paintings I would like to paint, I decided to have a go.
My aim was to learn how to paint white , that isn’t white, then somehow manage to make these chairs look like basket work without having to paint every detail and finally overall make people looking at it wish they were sitting in these chairs.
It was odd trying to capture the right colours to create the white on the walls and the paving and the chairs . I have never done this before to this extent. There are lots of colours on the walls as I tried first one colour then another . Then I glazed over the top with another. At first I didn’t like it because it was too blue and it looked cold. Then a friend suggested I try a combination of purple and yellow and that was much better, though it is still possible to see blue and pink showing through. So I ended up with a glorious hotchpotch of colours making white!
And of course every time I changed my mind about what colour to add next I had to alter everything else to blend in. It took some time!!
I left the chairs till nearly last as I was worried that I would not be able to get the effect I wanted and they were the most important part of the painting. It took a small glass of wine, (the correct dose helps overcome the fear but is not enough to make a mess.) and a little inspiration, a fan brush, several glazes, a few alterations and to my surprise I made a fair representation of the texture, and I am very pleased with the chairs.
I am looking forward to returning to Ostuni this summer and seeing if I can find this street again. It’s a good feeling walking round a corner and finding something familiar and realising that you know the tree, and the doorway and the chairs (if they are still there) and even the paving and the steps.
It is possible to buy prints or cards of this painting , as well as other of my paintings, on www.fineartamerica.com