Spring in Zagreb

Below are a few plein air cityscapes from the last week in and around Zagreb. Here in Croatia Spring has finally started in all it’s glory.

Maksimir Spring in Zagreb

Path in Maksimir Park. 25 x 35 cm, oil on panel.

maksimir oak Spring in Zagreb

The Old Oak, Maksimir. 30 x 25 cm, oil on panel.

I have a show of Zagreb cityscapes on May 9th here in the Upper Town at the Laval Nugent gallery. In the meantime the weather is too beautiful not to be painting plein air landscapes outside.

flower market Spring in Zagreb

The Flower Market at the Train Station. 20 x 30 cm, oil on panel.

dolac Spring in Zagreb

Dolac. 35 x 25 cm, oil on panel.

Špica Spring in Zagreb

Špica. 30 x 20 cm, oil on panel.

Cvjetni trg Spring in Zagreb

Spring, Cvjetni Trg. 20 x 30 cm, oil on panel.

Zagreb Nocturnes

Since the days are so short here in Zagreb (and I’m losing my mornings to language classes), I’ve been trying my hand at plein air nocturnes lately.

Gupceva Zvijezda Zagreb Nocturnes

The Bar at Zvijezda (2011). 20 x 30 cm, oil on panel.

Last winter I tried one nocturne of the small bar around the corner from my house. The idea was to sketch the composition in pencil and then begin the lay-in on site. However, for the bulk of the work, I had the painting upstairs in my studio and in the evenings (when I would walk the dog around the neighborhood) I would stop and try to memorized the view and then run back upstairs and paint from memory. It was like sight-sizing from a block away. The idea was based on the quote by Degas about memory drawing:

“If I were to open an academy I would have a five-story building. The model would pose on the ground floor with the first-year students. The most advanced students would work on the fifth floor.”

This year I’m more prepared. These new clip-on LED lights work very well, and have a much cooler light than the ones you could buy, years ago, when I last tried plein air landscape painting at night. The brand I’m using is Mighty Bright from Santa Barbara, CA and I have the two pronged ones they make for orchestra conductors. (Edit: As Jerry Campbell commented, these lights can be slightly blue. I also found myself compensating to knock down the oranges. Pushing the light right up to the canvas warms it up a bit, but if anyone one has a suggestion for a more neutral plein-air-at-night lighting solution, I’d love to hear it).

mightybright Zagreb Nocturnes

My set-up for nocturnes.

A second set of lights would be great as I don’t get enough light consistently across the panels and have to move the light to where I’m working.

Painting in the snow at night can be really cold. I wrote a post last winter on keeping warm, which you can read here.

nocturne Zagreb Nocturnes

Zagreb Cathedral Nocturne #1. 35 x 25 cm, oil on panel.

cathedral Zagreb Nocturnes

Zagreb Cathedral Nocturne #2. 30 x 20, oil on panel (unfinished).

kolovdor Zagreb Nocturnes

The Central Train Station at Night. 25 x 35 cm, oil on panel.

More to come. In the meantime, here are a couple more from the heavy snows we’ve had this month in Zagreb.

Britanski Trg Zagreb Nocturnes

Winter, Britanski Trg. 20 x 30 cm, oil on panel.

Mirogoj Zagreb Nocturnes

Mirogoj in the Snow. 30 x 40 cm, oil on panel.

Kazalište Zagreb Nocturnes

Steps of the HNK. 30 x 20 cn, oil on panel.

Ulica A.G. Matoša Zagreb Nocturnes

Ulica A.G. Matoša. 28 x 18 cm, oil on panel.

July in Zagreb

Brtanski2 July in Zagreb

Sunday Chess Players in Britanski Trg. 25 x 35 cm, oil on linen.

Here a few sketches from this week in Zagreb. I’ve been inside a lot working on commissions, which is a shame since the weather has been beautiful here.

cathedral3 431x600 July in Zagreb

The Cathedral from Kaptol. 35 x 25 cm, oil on panel.

tram1 July in Zagreb

The Tram at Zvijesda. 20 x 30 cm, oil on panel.

statue 378x600 July in Zagreb

Statue of the Virgin, Zagreb. 30 x 20 cm, oil on panel.

market July in Zagreb

Market Stalls, Zagreb. 20 x 30 cm, oil on linen.

Zagreb Sketches

After 18 years in the Oltrarno of Florence, I’ve left Italy for a while. I’m currently living in Zagreb, Croatia and will be moving to Maastricht, Holland in February.

Here are some sketches from the center of Zagreb where I’ve been living the last few weeks.

zagreb cathedral 21 Zagreb Sketches

The Cathedral from the Marketplace. 35 x 25 cm.

mirogoj Zagreb Sketches

Frost, Mirogoj. 25 x 35 cm.

Mirogoj 1 Zagreb Sketches

The Walls at Mirogoj. 35 x 25 cm.

Tkalciceva Zagreb Sketches

Tkalčićeva Ulica. 30 x 20 cm

P1160103 Zagreb Sketches

First Snow at Mirogoj. 20 x 30 cm.

P1160285 Zagreb Sketches

Palmoticeva ulica. 30 x 20 cm.

P1150995 Zagreb Sketches

Lotrščak Tower. 30 x 20 cm.

P1160115 Zagreb Sketches

Zagreb. 25 x 35 cm.

P1160292 Zagreb Sketches

The Bar at Zvijezda. 20 x 30 cm.

zagreb cathedral 1 Zagreb Sketches

The Cathedral, Zagreb. 30 x 20 cm.