In 2010, my late husband came home from work and told me that a co-worker of his had been to Venice and took some wonderful photos. At the time, I was looking for photos to paint and had never been to Venice myself, the closest I got was the Venetian Casino in Las Vegas. I asked him to talk to her for me and ask if I might be able to paint one or two of her photos. She sent home a number of really good photos and I picked the one I used as reference for "Venice Canal".
The painting has been in the making for almost 4 1/2 years. When I drew out the painting it was before I had taken any drawing courses and I used methods that allowed me to get the photo on to the canvas, but not understanding about camera distortion the building were arching towards each other. I could see it as I painted the monochromatic, but I didn't understand why it looked so odd. Because of this, it was frustrating painting this piece and I was continually getting lost in the painting, so I gave up. But in 2011, I decided to give it another try and drew out a very detailed painting, but still not understanding what I needed to do to make this process easier I gave up on that painting. In the late fall of 2014, I decided I either had to give this one last try or get rid of the painting altogether. I had taken drawing classes from some wonderful artists in Edmonton in 2011 and felt much more confident in my drawing abilities and decided to re-draw the painting on the original canvas as I painted. I also decided it was okay to use my artistic license to leave some things out and change the way some of the buildings looked, after all, I only had so much patience to continue with this same painting.
This has truly been a love/hate relationship, but as it progressed over the past few months I grew to enjoy the experience and feel grateful that I have grown as an artist. If I had drawn out this painting today I'm sure it would have been a lot easier to complete, but that's the thing about challenges, when you challenge yourself to do something and actually get it done (even 4 1/2 years later) you know you must have learned a thing or two.
Maybe one day I will get to Venice, but in the meantime I am grateful to have people in my life that have allowed me to use their photos as reference for some of my art; thank you Terry Degaust!. You were one of Bernie's favorite people to work with and I know if he could have seen this finished painting he would be happy.
20" x 30"
Original Oil - Framed
Available - for pricing and contact information please see my website at www.memoryroth.com
Photo reference: Terry Degaust - Edmonton, AB