I’ve been working in Italy recently on a number of painting projects, many of which involved painting on location. This is always a challenging exercise, particularly when painting a street scene such as this one of Via di Santo Spirito. I wanted to capture the tall narrow buildings that were shutting out much of the early evening light that were towering above me and at the same time, indicating something of the sunlight that was catching the distant buildings.
I was virtually standing under the ornate lamp that provided an interesting focal point to the scene which meant there was nowhere for me to rest my sketchbook or place my small box of watercolours. I had to stand the whole time and balance my paints on top of my camera case strapped to my belt. Every so often, someone would stand in front of me, blocking my view and there was a steady flow of traffic adding to the confusion. However, after about thirty minutes painting, I felt I had recorded something of worth that captures a typical Florence street scene that I plan to work up into a larger watercolour sometime soon.