Thursday, November 20, 2008

Villa Montalvo

Today we were at Villa Montalvo and the weather couldn't make up its mind. One minute it was sunny, then cloudy, then rainy, then sunny again - I thought I was back in England! Villa Montalvo is an Italian style mansion built in 1912 by James D. Phelan, the well know CA politician. Today the mansion is a CA historic landmark with gardens, aboretum, art center, and hiking trails open to the public. Its a great place to paint and sketch - even when the weather is less than perfect.
The mansion was all decked out for the Christmas Fair so it looked very festive. I did some quick sketches with brush pens and actually added a bit of color to the Xmas tree drawing in photoshop when I got home. (This the first time I've used photoshop for coloring so I'm pretty hopeless at it! I'm still getting the hang of using the brush pens, so the drawings are a little rough too. A bad workperson always blames their tools .... !)
Around the side of the house is a lovely area with sculptures and benches and the ground there was covered in fallen leaves. I drew the sculpture of the naked woman, but it made me feel very cold looking at her in this fall setting and I developed a hankering for some hot soup!

Wisteria is growing around the house and along the arbors and looks very colorful this time of year. The twisty trunks are fascinating to draw and I should have spent more time on this one getting the shapes right. Oh, well... there's always next time!

1 comment:

Kat said...

yay! I love those colors and the feeling of freedom in the brush strokes! :D very well done!
Also, that's very good coloring for the first time in photoshop! however, if you want to explore more you NEED a wacom tablet. Seriously, they're the way to go if you want more control over brushes, pressure sensitivity and being able to make decent shaped strokes. There's a new photoshop out right now with Illstrator and Flash! I've heard it even lets you rotate the canvas so you can put down strokes in a particular direction! so fancy! yay!