I love Amsterdam, so I jumped the chance to participate in its first 'Pintar Rapido' event. The hardest part of the whole weekend was deciding what to paint. Amsterdam has so many characteristic elements that it is difficult to choose which ones to include; and equally difficult to find a view which is not filled with an overwhelming amount of detail. There is so much going on; canals, trams, bicycles, boats, cafes, buildings and thousands of people. I found it really challenging to select a view that included enough imagery to be unmistakeably 'Amsterdam' whilst avoiding an information overload.
In the end I settled for this view of the distinctive Westerkerk seen from a classic city street in the beautiful (and slightly quieter) Jordaan region. The weather conditions were very helpful as there was a bright but incredibly flat grey sky all day. This allowed me to work on the painting for a lot longer than usual, I didn't have to worry about the shadows or highlights moving because there were none! I worked for an epic seven hours on the painting and I really enjoyed having the time to include a little more detail in some of the figures in the street. In fact I think they were the best part of all, meeting the people of Amsterdam as they stopped to chat and ask questions, always friendly and interested. I was positioned outside a beautician's shop and the owner even brought me out a very welcome cup of coffee!