Watercolor #26 in 33 Years: Arroyo Seco Pasadena

by Pasadena Adjacent


ArroyoSecoenlarge to appreciate 

This pleine air painting took place in the lower Arroyo. Just north of the La Loma Bridge and adjacent to the Arroyo Archery range. The location was chosen because of the Majtilla Poppies. But there was a hitch. While sunny days are wonderful for getting dramatic highlights and shadow, especially concerning architecture and cactus, they’re not so great when there isn’t any shade. In this case there was one lone oak next to a trash receptacle housing dog waste. And it wasn’t near the poppies; but we took it. Of course this limits your composition. Sherry turned her chair and faced the opposite direction while Barbara and I, seated on towels, stared straight ahead. The biting ants were an added attraction.

[WARNING SHOP TALK] despite the setbacks I was able to turn out a good painting. I’ve also come to discover the periphery of my eyesight is wider then my camera lens. Without the punch of those red posts accenting the archery trail, this might have been a mediocre painting.  My poppies look like fried eggs, which lends a certain naive charm. The beautiful blends of washes they’re emerging from is a personal best. And my sprawling Sycamores always look like they’re short of insane.

#26 and #25 look really sharp side by side.