Woke up at 4am on a grey, drizzly dawn; at the steps of the Opera House by 5am - must be cruise ship season again!
Waiting for the royal rendezvous when the Queen Mary 2 and her newer, smaller cousin the Queen Elizabeth pass each other with Fort Denison between them.
I have gouache paints and a large block of watercolour paper to catch the occasion. However this proves not to be the most sensible choice for this type of weather. The paintings turn out well, but by the time I have chased the Queen Elizabeth to its berth for the next day and a half at the Overseas Passenger Terminal at Circular Quay, all the pages are well and truly stuck together as it starts to rain.
After a few more promising attempts at painting gouaches of the docking super liner get partially washed away, I try plan B and swap them for oil paints.
A young couple from Melbourne happened to wander up just as I was wondering what to paint in the foreground to show the scale of the huge ship, and add some human interest. I painted them arm in arm at the top of the Commissioner's steps. (They now own the painting).
|Oil painting of ' The Queen Elizabeth at Circular Quay from the Commissioners Steps' 2011 oil on canvas 31 x 61cm |
The rain nearly drove me crazy, stopping long enough to give me a false sense of security, then setting in as soon as I settled down to get some serious painting done, but I managed to finish this oil painting at the end of the first day.
The next day I bravely started a larger canvas, knowing that the ship was due to sail at midday.
I managed to paint most of the ship before it left, but have to return to fix up the sea, and sky to my satisfaction.
I will post the "Royal Rendezvous" gouaches of the 2 Queens passing each other, as soon as I can carefully prise the paintings apart, hopefully without damaging them too much. At least I might be able to use them as studies to paint a canvas from in the studio.