The Golden Gate Bridge in the Rain

On Sunday I took a drive to the Legion of Honor in San Francisco to see an excellent show, Arthur Szyk: Miniature Paintings and Modern Illuminations. Arthur Szyk was an Early 20th Century illustrator from Poland and is best known for his highly detailed, miniature paintings that were created for books and medieval manuscripts, using transparent/opaque watercolors.

Also exhibiting at the Legion was Pulp Fashion: The Art of Isabelle de Borchgrave. De Borchgrave is known for using paper as a medium for recreating historic dresses worn by Elizabeth I, the Medici family, Marie-Antoinette, and many others. To construct these costumes, paper was delicately painted by hand and meticulously sewn together as if it were real fabric. The finished gowns were then posed on manikins in the same manner as the old master paintings that inspired them, recreating the painting and bringing it to life in three dimensions.

After viewing the exhibition, I felt my trip to San Francisco wouldn’t be complete unless I did some sketching, so I exited the museum and looked around for a good place to draw. After walking the grounds, I decided on the museum itself as my subject, with a lion statue in the foreground. But soon after I was settled, a soft rain from the greying sky above rendered my marking pen useless, and with my sketchbook getting wet, I decided to head back home.

Walking back to my car, I paused for a moment to admire an impressive view of the Golden Gate Bridge almost obscured by the rapidly changing weather. It would have been a shame to pass up an opportunity like this so I looked around for a place I could sketch without getting wet. Not far behind me, I saw a stump under a tree on which I could sit, paint, and be sheltered all at the same time. Pulling out my art supplies once again, I painted watercolors wet-into-wet in order to capture the mood of the hazy bridge. Although I stayed relatively dry under the canopy of trees, a breeze carried the little droplets of rain that dotted my drying painting and made it look like snow.


9 thoughts on “The Golden Gate Bridge in the Rain

  1. Thanks Waker! Its good to hear from you. It felt like a magical experience, I’m glad it came across. Thanks for the comment!

  2. I could have sworn that I commented on this… maybe it was over at Flickr. Awesome job on this one. Very illustrative. Feels like a dreamy childrens book spread.

  3. Richard, this needs to be on display somewhere so that you can hide in a corner and watch people’s faces change as they look at it. It gives one a rather breathless, dreamy feeling.

  4. Thanks Jean, nice comment. I use to show my watercolors at art festivals here in the Bay Area and I could do just that. It always feels good to see someone appreciating my work. Thanks to you too!

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