Above is a 5X7 watercolor sketch done from a photo I took a few years ago. I had been thinking for a while how I would work a painting from the image. I am fascinated by the way light reveals a subject. So in this exercise, I simplified and "cooled down" the light cast on the subject and the ground. I also simplified the shapes and used the shadows to unify the painting.
Why now? Friday I had a wonderful conversation with a dear studio neighbor at LibertyTown, Kathleen Walsh. She recently returned from Africa and was brainstorming a theme for a group of paintings inspired by the area. Part of the brainstorming... the commonalities of simple life experiences... a mother's sigh when she sees the price of milk, mother's scolding, and children's laughter... all sound the same no matter where you hear them in the world. I took this photo in San Antonio, Tx but have seen this scene reenacted many times in other parts of the world; a child playing with pigeons. Recognizing the simple experiences we share offers a hint of interrelatedness and, hopefully, a unity among people.