Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Bike Race in France

Here is something I have wanted to paint for a very long time. We caught the end of this bike race when in Nice, France about 10 years ago. I was tired of seeing my flower paintings so I looked through my photos for another subject other than flowers. I saw these photos and the motion and blur in the photos makes me feel like it was just today that we fell upon this finish line. I am so overwhelmed with the thought of making a real drawing out of this. There is so much detail and we all know how I have a tendency to get caught up in the detail. The photo is not a good photo for photosake. The sun is behind the cyclists so everything including the cyclists are in shadow. Maybe this can help me simplify the painting. I will try to connect the long shadows and the cyclists as well as the crowd on the sideline. I think I will do a couple of more sketches to simplify before I try a watercolor of this. I am happy with the sketch. I would like to capture this looseness and feeling in the watercolor. All suggestions on how to do this are welcome!


  1. The sketch is great, and you are approaching the same as I would, by trying to simplify. I'd stay away from too much detail, express the motion instead. I'm sure it will turn out great.

  2. This sketch has a sense of motion.. I think I would have done the same thing (connecting the shadows, cyclist and crowd) as you have said to simplyfy things in the sketch. All the best for painting.

  3. I look forward to seeing the end result of this lovely sketch. I think Anthony is right, little detail! And a bit of blurring of the image to suggest movement!

  4. Love your sketch. Your strokes are so strong and confident. The subject is fun and the composition really works.
    The backhoe can be yours for $50. Also, the painting of Sarah and Ramin was in San Francisco. They are a darling, young couple in love, sightseeing. She is just barely expecting.


Thanks so much for taking the time to leave your thoughts. I love hearing from you!