"Sour Milk Gill" Oil Painting by James Swanson

"Sour Milk Gill" Oil Painting by James Swanson
"Sour Milk Gill" From the award winning painting series.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Love at First Sight, Dumb Struck Again.

"Lucca Cherub"
 By James Swanson/ Traveler Jim M.
12"x9" Oil on Canvas
Welcome to Day Ten of this 14 day Travel Paint Special Edition of The Artist and the Traveler. This special project needs an special guest, meet our guide Traveler Jim M.!  
Jim and Cathy at lunch near the villas. In 2007 
Jim and his wife Cathy took a 14 day trip to Northern Italy following the trail of PBS travel show host Rick Steves' Italian journey to see the real Italy.
View from the tower. 
( all of these Italy photos are from Traveler Jim's wonderful website.) 
This Trip of Jim and Cathy's just gets better and better. From Venice, to Padua, To Ravenna, to Assisi. to Montone, to Orvieto, to  Agriturismo, to Loro Ciuffenato Certaldoand now on to Lucca, what more can we see?`
Well, how about visiting a Villa and biking around this historic town.
Walking back to bus after lunch

Traveler Jim M's. Travel Journal:
After breakfast, we went to visit a couple of villas near Lucca.  The gardens were interesting and the villas themselves were like being in a museum, only better because there are no “ropes” to keep you away from the treasures.
We returned to Lucca and had the afternoon free.  Cathy and I climbed the Guinigi tower with the trees on the top (130 stairs to the top).  The trees were planted by tower guards who were tired of standing on top of the tower in the hot sun.   After being on top of the tower in the hot sun, it’s easy to see why they planted the trees. 
The lemon house at the villa.  Lemon houses are used to shelter the 100's of citrus plants during cold weather
 Next, we visited Duomo San Marino  that houses the “cross that miraculously finished itself” and “was destined to come to Lucca”.  We also toured the archaeological ruins under Chiesa di San Giovanni.  The excavations below the church include many interesting mosaic fragments in the ruins.
For more on the trip visit Jim M.'s website.
Cherubs are a popular theme for garden statues.
This is the photo that I will be working with for the painting.
Traveler Painting "Lucca Cherub"- I've seen some beautiful things so far on this virtual trip of Northern Italy thanks to Jim M.'s photos, so I thought it would be only fitting to paint a garden spot. I also wanted another shot at a statue, and this cherub of Traveler Jim M's has gotten in the way of my brush.
I'll be painting fast here again, just as I would if I were standing right there. With the sub light charging I'll only have an hour or two to capture it wings and all. So, here are my painting steps to capture a  Lucca Cherub.

The rough sketch on canvas using Burnt Sienna
Next the different tones of darks are painted in.
Here I;m trying to block in the painting as fast as I can, so the greens are next laid in.
The water is the next thing I tackled. Now all that is left to paint in is the Cherub figure. The light changing  you would want to either paint it first or last in your painting process. I chose last.

Paint is now covering the whole canvas, time to make some color adjustments.

Times UP! Brushes are down, for now. There are a few thing that I will fix later on in this painting, but it's too wet to do more right now. And besides time is up.
 Here are some close up details of the painting.

  Framed and ready to go.

"Lucca Cherub"
 By James Swanson/ Traveler Jim M.
12"x9" Oil on Canvas
I knew Italy would be a love fest for the eyes and this painting proves it. The painting will need a few more adjustments, but it's pretty close for now. And as always my thanks goes out to Jim M. and his wife Cathy for letting this artist tag along on their great trip. 
This is day Ten, of this 14 day painting journey of Northern Italy, here are the links to see the rest Venice, to Padua, To Ravenna, to Assisi. to Montone, to Orvieto, to  Agriturismo, to Loro Ciuffenato Certaldo.
Or go to The Artist and the Traveler.org to see them, and many more place and stories. New Travelers and stories are always welcome too! Until next time, Ciao!

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Have a good travel story and some fun and interesting pictures and we can get started on a painting journey.E mail me here with
name, place, and a few pics of the spot,and I'll get back to you.