Blue Mosque, Istanbul:Tonal Sketch

Blue Mosque Sketch

I mentioned a few posts back that I wanted a smaller picture for the exhibition as they are popular sometimes. I will repeat the photograph later, which was one that I took when we were there in October

The light was very good and the shadows were long and distinct. I couldn’t make my mind up, whether to use the local colours or whether to try a sunset picture. I think as the shadows are good that I will stick with the local colours, with maybe a mental note to do a sunset picture another time. As we were driving from the airport to pick up our ship,the day before,  the sun was setting over Istanbul, and especially over the Mosque of Suleiman the Magnificent, another beautiful building.  The sky was orange going towards pink and the buildings were violet. Sadly my camera was still packed in the luggage hold. Maybe I will try that shot from memory one day.

I think the sketch will be very helpful. I have moved some trees away from the front of the building, and I think I have sorted out the shaded areas. I didn’t use ink this time for the sketch. Instead I used Paynes Grey watercolour, which I quite like for sketching. You can’t tell from the photograph, but the colour is a blue-black shade, which is quite pleasing. I sometimes think that I prefer the sketch to the finished painting. There is something about a sketch, perhaps because it is done quickly and without inhibition, that the work retains spontaneity and freshness. Easy to lose this, when working carefully on the actual painting.

I now have to transfer the sketch to the watercolour paper, which is the uninteresting part and then start the painting. Colours to be decided, so I will be a little while


As you can see, some unnecessary stuff left out, and I have moved closer to the building itself

I am hoping on Saturday to get up to London and go to another exhibition at the Tate Gallery. The exhibition is entitled Art and Empire which should be interesting. When we were there for the Frank Auerbach exhibition, we looked in quickly, but this is quite a big exhibition so we left it for another day. If it is good I will write something about it. Certainly it will be as different to the Auerbach collection as chalk is to cheese

2 thoughts on “Blue Mosque, Istanbul:Tonal Sketch

  1. Hello David. I’m excited to follow your progress with Blue Mosque, Istanbul. This kind of subject seems to suit me to try for myself. I await your regular emails with anticipation and thank you so much once again for the time you so freely give to inspire those of us trying to improve our efforts. Kind regards, Chris

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Chris, for the encouragement.
      I hope the painting turns out well. I haven’t done it yet, so time will tell. Luckily I don’t mind talking about my mistakes and hopefully how to correct them
      Nice to hear from you again


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