I stumbled across an old photograph taken in the 1980s. It was when I was just learning how to set aperture and exposure time to take low light photographs. I was using Ektachrome 35mm slide film at the time. All I have left of the slide is this very bad scan, also done on the first scanner I ever owned — the name of which escapes me.
I always liked the photo mostly for sentimental reasons, recalling my joy at being able to capture what the sun looked like and being able to position the shot to have the sun setting right on top of the dock.
I wanted to know what would happen if I tried to capture this same image as an acrylic painting – I needed some experience mixing colors in acrylics which has turned out to be a problem since I cannot mix on the brush for some reason.
I began the painting by using painter’s tape to mask off the horizon line, and used black gesso for the sky. After that was dry I painted in the sky and let it dry. Next was to mix a color for the water and add it up to the horizon line. The rest of the painting was done by mixing colors (very dark browns, very dark greens) and finishing the components, adding the sun highlights at the end.
Obviously I was not able to render the sun the way I thought I should have, and will mask if off leaving a white disk should I ever try this effect again. But all in all, I am not upset with the result, which I’ve titled ‘Boca Ciega Sunset‘ (click for full image.)