When faced with depicting a broad subject, it’s often difficult to decide where to start. Where does one begin to describe an entire country like Italy? The people, the food, the cities, the architecture? I’ve discovered that sometimes, instead of stepping back to fit everything into the overall picture, it’s best to take a closer look and focus on a single aspect of the scene. In that way I can reveal several unified elements that contribute to the overall revelation.
I was intrigued by the architectural features I found throughout Italy – doors, windows, arches, roofs, stairs, masonry, metal work, and sculpture – as well as by the natural features, epitomized in the wide range of plant life.
Perhaps most appealing of all, though, were the colors, the quality of light – its added color, angles, reflections, softness or harshness, and contrasts – which so radically influenced my impression of everything else, and the pervading sense of antiquity.
In “Arched Window with Plant” (#110604), shown above, I was able to condense several of those elements into a single painting. The key was in looking closely enough at the subject that, while focusing on the most appealing features, the viewer does not become distracted by extraneous and unnecessary information.
In essence, this painting offers a general overall image of my impressions of Italy.