Friday, December 18, 2009

Goa Series IX - Karaoke Night at St Antony's

Karaoke Night at St Antony's - watercolorThis is the last painting in my Goa series. I have tried to paint the Karaoke night which was happening at St Antony's restaurant on the night of my last day in Goa. We happened to be passing by this place when we heard some good music and decided to get in. It was very crowded and we could just about manage to find a corner to stand. But the experience was great as people were in general singing very well and there were professional singers also who were singling live. We heard everything from sweet child o mine to Bachna ae Haseeno that night. The energy was great.

This painting was the most difficult till now for me. Thats because
1. I had never painted a night scene before.
2. I had no reference photo for this.
3. Capturing the crowd and the energy was a challenge.

Anyways I have tried and made 2 versions of the same scene. The second was was done first on a small sheet and did it very quickly to get a feel of the painting and then I went forward and did the first one. I hope you enjoy it.

Karaoke Night at St Antony's II - watercolorp.s. I'll be on vacation for 15 days, which means a break from painting and being on blogsphere. I wish all of you a merry Christmas and a very very happy new year in advance.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Goa Series VIII - Kr at St Francis church

Kumar at St Francis church - watercolorThis is the church of St Francis of Assisi in 'Velha' Goa or old Goa. It was very hot and sunny when we had gone here. By the time I returned from here I had mild sun burns. Anyways I enjoyed doing this painting a lot.

p.s. Registration is on for chitrasanthe. People in and around Bangalore can register for it at Chitrakala Parishat, Bangalore. Their phone number is 2226 1816.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Goa Series VII - On Mandovi

on Mandovi - watercolor The road to Old Goa from Panjim is quiet a drive. The road runs parallel to river Mandovi and you'll find some small restaurants like this on the road side. The service is generally very slow and you are sure to have a really 'leisurely' meal here. The experience however is great.

The sketch for the painting posted too. The sketch was done sitting on a chair and the painting was done sitting on top of a table. :)

on Mandovi - sketch

Friday, December 11, 2009

Goa Series VI - Sunset at Baga creek

sunset at Baga creek - watercolor
The painting is called "sunset at Baga creek" (Pun intended too). This is an extension of the scene in the last painting I posted.

I have started feeling that my paintings are becoming too 'plastic'. They are not capturing any sort of feel. To deal with it lately I have not been looking at the reference while painting. I just use the reference to draw and then paint from impression that I had got from the reference.

But still they are becoming too conformal, too bounded, less free and less expressive. Its becoming more of engineering drawing instead of painting. There is logic going into it, rather than intuition. Its becoming bounded by rules rather than breaking away from it.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Goa Series V - Chilling at Baga Creek

chilling at Baga creek - watercolorThis is a section of a shack/restaurant at Baga Creek. Baga beach is one of the most famous beaches in Goa (Northern part of Goa). Just besides it there is a less crowded and more peaceful place, the Baga creek. This view is from Baga beach.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Goa Series IV - Miramar

Quiet Corner at Miramar behind Kala Academy - watercolor
This place is just behind Kala Academy on Miramar beach at Panjim, the capital of Goa. The beach was boring, but this view was good.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Goa Series III - Fort Aguada

fort Aguada - watercolorThis is the lighthouse of fort Aguada. Its a very old structure. I tried to capture that old and aged feel of the lighthouse.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Goa series II - View from Aguada

view from fort Aguada - watercolor
Fort Aguada is one of the more famous tourists spots in Goa. Its on a small hill and it probably used to be a jail in old times. One can get a bird's eye view of the vast expanse of Arabian sea dotted with steamers and boats from here. This view is from one corner of the fort.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Inspired by Goa - I

House at Calangutte - Watercolor
I had made a short trip to Goa 2 weeks back. It was my first visit to Goa and I was floored. Goa was very inspirational. It made me want to paint almost everything out there. I had taken some pictures and planning to turn a few of them into paintings. This is the first of the series.

This was a house behind my Hotel. It had enough space around it and it was filled with greenery. It had a certain calmness around it.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Back after a small break

Watercolor painting of Puri

Hi everyone. I have been in and out of Bangalore in last 2 weeks and have not been able to keep much in touch. Moreover I have not been able to paint for a long time now. Plan to get back to it asap.

This is an old painting of the grand road of Puri that I had attempted about 7-8 months back in monochrome.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Larger than life

In other words this painting is called 'melodrama'. I call this a fantasy-scape. :)

Fantasy scape in watercolor

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Monday, November 9, 2009

Mustard Fields

Mustard fields in watercolorThis scene of mustard harvest is very common in the state of Punjab in India. Mustard fields have been romanticized in Bollywood films like DDLJ .

Mustard fields in watercolor sketch
This is done from a photo. I did a preliminary sketch and then did the painting. I wanted to paint from the feel/impression that I had got from the photo. So when I was doing the painting I was looking only at the sketch for reference and not at the photo that I did the sketch from.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Painting dark to light

Watercolor painting - Through the mazeSometime back I stumbled upon this page which talks about getting a lot of freshness in painting when one paints dark to light instead of traditional light to dark in watercolors. So I gave it a try.

Sketch - Through the mazeFirst I did the sketch as suggested in the page and then did the painting with some changes from the sketch. In the painting I used the suggested technique in the trees only. And here is the outcome. I think the sketch ended up being more fresh looking than the painting.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Pen and Ink?

I have been wanting to use a little bit of Pen and Ink in my paintings for some time. I have never seen how a pen of the pen and ink drawing looks like. I went to some nearby art stores, but they did not have it. So I bought a black gel pen and used it in this.

This sketch is that of Mansi Ghat in Benaras. I wanted to do a quick sketch here and wanted to give finishing touches with ink, which was achieved with the black gel pen. :) Can anybody suggest some resources on the internet about Pen and Ink?

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Himachal Village - Solved

This is the 'answer' to the 'puzzle' posted by me in the previous post. In the above photo the picture on the left is the original painting. The picture on the right has been digitally modified. When I looked at the original painting my eye would enter the painting from top, flow down and would abruptly stop at the absolutely unnecessary house in the path. So I removed the house digitally to see what happens and then I could feel my eye moving down and out of the painting smoothly.

So I decided to remove the house. For that I lifted the colors first. But still it could be seen. Then I glazed using white. Yes, believe it or not, but I did that. And then added the cart and other smart details to remove any other trace of what previously was there.

The original painting may look better to many people. But I could not stop without giving it a try.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Himachal Village

I was doing a Google search on Himachal Pradesh and Manali when I came across a photograph, that caught my eye and I wanted to paint it. But there was something about the picture that I thought was quiet not right. I did a value sketch before painting it to find out what was troubling me. But I just could not make out.

Anyhow I went forward and did the painting. When the painting was complete I understood what was it that was troubling me. And then I did that, 'what should not be done' :). I 'corrected' that part of the painting. I know watercolors should not be corrected and I kind of murdered the painting by correcting it, but for me if I had left it like that it was dead anyway.

What I want to know now is can you guess where the correction was made? :). I'll post the uncorrected version in the next post.

Saturday, October 24, 2009


After a long gap PC and I were painting together again. This was done from one of the pictures that PC had taken while on his way to (or back from) his native. I decided to change the color of the thatched roof to a warm color. It was a dull gray in the picture and hence boring.

The harmonious existence of the concrete house and the thatched roof facade for the same made the picture quite interesting for me.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

At Barabati Fort

Barabati fort at Cuttack in Orissa is one of the last standing forts. I tried to capture a winter morning scene there. It was done from a photo. But at the end of it I was not very happy with it. It looked to me as if something was missing.

What is your first impression when you see it? What is that you find that is just not right? Well, I am not going to do anything to this painting, but I would like to find some answers to the questions in my mind.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

In ruins WIP

I had taken this photo on a short trek to Nijagal betta near Bangalore. Typically almost all hills which happen to be near a village in Karnataka do have a temple built on them. As they are built in Dravidian architecture they are very similar in appearance. And as they are quiet old (typicaly 400-500 years but some temples are more than 1000 years old) and there is no ownership to look after them the condition of all of them are also very similar.

I thought of posting the WIP for this as somehow I ended up doing a negative space painting for this, going dark to light.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Happy Deepavali

Its Diwali (Deepavali) time, which means its also the time for Rangoli. To celebrate we had a small Rangoli competition at my work place. Rangoli is a dry and colored sand art that is generally done in festivities across India. Making a Rangoli requires certain skills which none of my team mates possessed (4 of us were in the team). Hence we decided do something 'different' read 'something that we could do'. :)
We did a Warhol using masks cut out of paper. First we dropped the off white sand on the floor and then masked them and dropped the colored sand and then lifted the mask out.
In Rangoli you have to be right the first time, else you have to start all over again from scratch. This is a picture of the masks placed on the floor. George Harrison's mask could not get placed properly (The mask for the left cheek got placed at the eye level) while dropping the colored sand and hence that was a bit of disaster in the final Rangoli. But it was a very enjoyable experience nevertheless. A great start to Deepavali weekend.

**** Wish you a very happy and enjoyable Diwali ****

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

More sketches

Still continuing with my quick sketching exercises. All these paintings are done on 1/8th imperial size paper. The first two are on Montval and the last on Guarro. I am finding that Montval gives a good fluidity to the paintings if you just get things right in the first wash.

AlleyThe alley
This is a sketch done from a picture from the Internet.

Morning Chat Morning chat
This was done at Cubbon park in Bangalore. This was my second plein air outing. I took about 20-30 mins to do this. And the group of friends who are seen here were chatting there almost till the completion of this sketch. Must thank them for their involuntary cooperation. :)

Karnataka High Court
This too was done in Cubbon park. This is more of a painting than a sketch. This place is bang opposite to the place shown in the second sketch.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Three Colors

Sometime back there was this post by Mr Milind Mulick, where he had used three primaries to do a painting and I copied the same idea to do this painting.

I had used a reference photo for this, but took liberty to change it a bit here and there. The painting is called 'the complete bazaar'. Any guesses why??

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Some sketches

I was trying do a lot of things here. Some of them were

a. painting quickly
b. painting expressively
c. using darks
d. Painting without being judgemental

The first 3 are on small size paper (about 6" x 7") and the last one is on quarter imperial.

watercolor sketch - random scapeRandom Scape

watercolor sketch - waitingWaiting

watercolor sketch - welcome homeWelcome home

watercolor painting - outside the churchOutside the church

The first sketch 'Random scape' was done completely without any thoughts going into it. Finally it became heavy on one side. But I preferred to leave it like that. After all it was a random sketch.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

The Window

One thing that gives me a lot of trouble is using darks in a painting. In this painting I was trying to use really dark darks (straight out of the tube). I am now planning to keep experimenting for sometime with darks.

PC also did the same painting. He changed the original photo quiet a bit to get good depth. I changed the wall color from blue to a warm sienna to get a color contrast between the window and the wall.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A city soaked

Every time I visited Ajay's blog I would see this photograph taken by him which looked like a painting. It was irresistible not to paint this, but since I had not painted a rainy scene before it was intimidating too. However I just went ahead and painted it.
The composition of the photo was great. So made only some minor changes in the painting. The biggest change was to increase the size of the dome and make people wear colorful clothes :). I hope I was able to do justice to the photograph.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Misty Morning Walk

This weekend the plan was paint quick. I take 3-4 hours for completing a painting (quarter or half imperial size) in general. The idea was to paint quick, so that there will be some looseness in the final output, less of overdoing and then it will be a good preparation for going plein air. It was PC and I again and venue was PC's house.

It was done from a photo taken by PC while trekking at Kemmangundi. I took just below 2 hours to complete this painting (quarter imperial size). But I still ended up overworking some areas.

p.s. Thanks to PC and his wife for a lovely and really heavy breakfast.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Used and Forgotten

used and forgotten
I somehow get attracted to things that people choose to ignore. Old buidings, abandoned cars houses, broken stuff etc etc. This is yet another painting like that. Its a painting of 'used and forgotten' corner. There is a place in everyone's house where people just dump their old things that they have used for years and forget about it. Usually some corner somewhere. And it is not very different when it comes to human beings I guess.

watercolor painting of rust
The picture I used was from the world wide web. There was something new that I tried in this painting and it seemed to work. I wanted to paint rust on the blue tin door. For that I glazed dark to light. Using some burnt amber I painted a random pattern and splattered it here and there. Then after it had dried completely I glazed using cobalt blue. The blue wash had to be done very quick and softly. The final outcome was good enough to look like rust for me.

p.s. The name for the painting I am going with in the last post is "Safe for now" suggested by Mineke.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Any suggestions

This Sunday it was down to just PC and me and we had decided to paint indoors at my place. I had taken a photo of this building sometime back and that became our subject.

I took liberty to change the composition quiet a bit. There were more houses in the background which I removed. The big tree got added from my memory and another tree which was there opposite to the structure was removed. And I also changed the proportion of the building. PC kind of stuck to the photo.

I do not have a name for it till now. All suggestions are welcome.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Bamboo zone..... Enter at your own risk.

watercolor painting of bamboo bush
While on a trip to Waynad (Kerala), I had taken this picture of a bamboo bush. The density of the bush and the random manner in which the leaves and the branches crowd the bush was very interesting to see. The play of light added that zing to the whole scene.

I wanted to capture that dense feeling of the bamboo bush in this painting. And of course the name 'Bamboo zone' is for exactly the same reason.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Flowers anyone???

This is the first flower painting I have done in watercolors. This was an exercise for an online group that I am part of. The idea was to paint loose. I tried two versions of the same painting.

looser flowers in watercolor
The second one seems looser than the first one. But I guess I wanted both of them to be even looser in quality. Some day I'll be there.

p.s. Thanks to Roena and Wendy for their valuable inputs

Monday, September 14, 2009

Making mistakes is good

It was my first plein air experience this weekend. Plan was to go to a public park in the morning, but it was raining and hence we decided to go to the terrace of our office which was nearby. There were 3 of us (PC, Gopi and self) It was very cloudy and we did not have a single good view to paint. We settled down with the best option and started off. Painting outside was difficult as compared to painting inside with all comforts. We started at 8:30 and had to wrap up by 10:30.

The painting that I had made was one of the worst paintings that I have ever made (the painting at the top of this post). But I guess that’s how life is and it presented me with a good learning experience. Nevertheless if anyone can leave any tips regarding plein air painting it would be great.

Later I also made a quick painting of the same on a 5"x7" sheet just to redeem myself :). But that too was bad. Here is that one.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Ceramic Painting - Fired

Got the ceramic painting back after after it was glazed and fired. This is how it looks. Some of the colors have become darker, while some have become slightly lighter. Brush marks are now very clearly visible. Over all I think I liked it.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

An Indian Summer

An Indian Summer - Watercolor on paper
The world weather is changing. Here too the weather cycle seems to have shifted. Summer is hotter and is extended now. Monsoons have not hit India in time this year. Here is a painting of a scene of summer in India.

It is done from a photo. Almost undiluted colour was used to get the darks. This is the first painting where I have used the darks so dark. Going against the rules again I also used some ivory black with blue for the darks.