Castle in the Sky: Setting the Background for Hearst Castle View #1

I drew this out a few days ago but haven’t had proper time to devote to it until now. This is one that I think should be handled more directly than some others I’ve done, and handled in fewer sessions–ideally one, but my lifestyle and my attention span won’t permit that, so at least I wanted to paint all the background at once–the sky, water, and land–all relatively wet so they recede and blend as compared to the more material and structural foreground. We’ll see when I’m done if what I did today will work as I was imagining it.

One thing that struck me about the view was how difficult it was to distinguish the sky from the ocean due to the haze. It created the strange sensation of singling out the castle as a distinct, special place–a castle in the sky–but not some hazy ethereal castle, rather this architectural floating ecosystem. I think a little of Hayao Miyazaki’s film Castle in the Sky.

For the sky I stuck with a simple very diluted cobalt blue, and for the clouds I mixed in some burnt sienna. In the ocean I added a little viridian to the cobalt blue, and then tied that to the foreground by using roughly the same color in the distant waves, the lake in the center left, and the pot on the right. Viridian will appear in a greyed-out form again on the window ledge, and link to the distance as well.

That’s all for now. Maybe I can go back to sleep before the kids wake up.

Thanks for reading.