Monday, 16 August 2010

Sitting on the dock of the bay

I chose the title of this painting in homage to Otis Redding whose “Sitting on the dock of the bay” is one of my favourite songs.

Sitting on the dock of the bay - oil on linen canvas (50 x 60 cm) by Benoit Philippe

And as it happens, the lyrics fit very well what was happening this morning, as I was walking along the docks, on my way to Pier 39:

I left my home in Georgia

Headed for the 'Frisco bay

'Cause I've had nothing to live for

And look like nothin's gonna come my way

So I'm just gonna sit on the dock of the bay

Watching the tide roll away

Ooo, I'm sittin' on the dock of the bay

Wastin' time

I walked all the way to the end of Pier 7. It was early morning and I was alone, apart from some amateur fishermen. There was no fog, I was lucky; but the wind was strong.

When I came back, I saw this man with his trolley. All his possessions were stacked on that trolley, secured with ropes. And he was watching San Francisco Bay, the light sparkling on the water, the boats and Bay Bridge in the background.

I wanted to do a painting using mainly greys. This was an ideal subject for it with the backlit man, the railing and the strong shadows.

I started using greys, black and white. The result was dull. So I decided to play on the contrast between blue and yellow and use greys tinted with both tones. The painting is mainly in the cool spectrum. The only warm colour I used was a Naple Yellow Reddish colour.

Here is the full palette I used for this painting:

  • Titanium White (Griffin Alkyd – Winsor & Newton)
  • Naple Yellow Reddish (Rembrandt)
  • Cadmium Yellow Pale (Winsor & Newton)
  • Davy’s Grey (Winsor & Newton)
  • Payne’s Grey (Mussini / Scmincke)
  • Cobalt Blue Tone (Mussini / Scmincke)
  • Ultramarine Blue

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Irina said...

Very in tune with the song. I love the reflections on the water.

Lokelani Forrest said...

Very stirring.