Watercolor Sunset Painting

February 11, 2019

When my studio was on South Pearl Street in Denver, I did a small watercolor painting of this scene then recently I did this larger watercolor painting from the small image.  I was attracted to the colorful sunset and the large dark shape of the church and tree branches that were back lit by the setting sun.  This eliminated details and reduced the subject to a dark shape against the colorful sky.  From my old studio I was able to study this scene every evening until I finished the first painting.  The row houses with their glowing windows along the street in front of the church and the cars on the street with their lights added just the spark I wanted against the large dark shape.  Simplicity is the key and any more detail would have detracted from the colors of the sunset.  The complementary colors of blue and orange played an important part in the color scheme and the red reflected onto the street pavement helped tie the middle ground and background together.  Interesting subjects are everywhere and it is the job of the artist to take ordinary things that people pass by everyday and present them in a way that encourages people to stop and look.  This watercolor painting is currently on display at the Art & Soul Show at the Art Students League of Denver.  Happy Painting!  Dennis Pendleton


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