The influence of the designers, builders and architects of the Italian Renaissance has left us a rich legacy in terms of the formal buildings that have been built on the streets of towns and cities in many parts of the world.
This chapter looks at some of the most architecturally challenging types of building - imposing, prestigious formal buildings, built for posterity. It includes buildings designed in the classical tradition — with features owing much to ancient Cireece and Rome, interpreted by the Renaissance architects and refined by later generations. It also includes institutional buildings, such .is the universities and colleges that were built in the Ciothic tradition, with studies of the elaborate stonework of their facades.
The materials used for these formal buildings are those that will last: stone, stucco and brick. They appear in many guises, depending on the types used (the different types of stone, for instance, which vary in colour from mellow ochres to harsh greys); the effect of light on the subject; and the effect of weathering or pollution.
Although the materials will each require a different approach for recording them, the great advantage is that you only need a verv limited c c c» j j *
range of colours in your palette — a few of the siennas and an ochre or an umber or two are the key colours. The challenge lies in the way in which vou mix the colours, and the range of tones that you can achieve. For this
I like to use my favourite technique of allowing my colours to mix on the paper rather than in the palette, using a lot of water when mixing paint, and starting with a particularly watery underwash. Before this has had time to dry, I will mix another colour and drop it onto the wet or damp paint previously applied to the paper. The result is that the colours will bleed and blend in parts, but not right across the paper, so they maintain their own identities and qualities on other parts of the paper. I often repeat this procedure three or four times until I have created a vast array of tones out of three or four colours — all by using water, and exploiting the intrinsic qualities of watercolour paints.
Architecture has always been subject to the demands of fashion, and styles and designs spread as rapidly as the worldwide transport system. It is not unusual, therefore, to find formal or classical buildings in most parts of the world, with their fabric in various states of repair or disrepair - all the better for us artists!
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