Julia Hayashi | Observing LA
portfolio_page-template-default,single,single-portfolio_page,postid-50905,eltd-core-1.0.3,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,borderland child-child-ver-1.0.0,borderland-ver-1.5.1, vertical_menu_with_scroll,smooth_scroll,paspartu_enabled,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-,vc_responsive

Observing LA

Observing LA

Observing LA 15×1/4x

Why I painted this:

I found this photo in my son Tory’s collection of photo shoots with his friends in LA. This was at the LA Observatory overlooking the city lights and I loved the composition.  Monique’s expression is…

I was intrigued by the circular bubble effect of the lights and wondered how I would paint them to achieve the translucent effect.

How it came together: (I had some help!)

That proved to be the challenge. I started with the dark night sky, and trying to make those first washes count I put WAY to much pigment and NOT enough water onto the paper. I then outlined the circles with paint giving them too hard of edges. Not to be defeated I moved on to Monique. After I had painted somewhat of the whole thing I was ready to throw it away. With a lot of encouragement from my friend and art teacher Jeff, I kept going.

TIP!: ARCHES CP#300 paper is strong stuff!

Back to the process: I literally put the paper under the faucet and washed off all that paint from the sky.  Jeff showed me how to soften the circles and helped me adjust her face skin tones. I tend to be timid with the color and he added an orange wash which made me cringe, but dried and was just what it needed.

What I learned:

1.       Don’t’ quit on a piece.

2.       Go darker than you think…watercolors dry way lighter than they go on.

3.       If you don’t like the whole thing, cropping is an option!

4.       When you wonder how to do something….try it, eventually you’ll learn!

Why I love this painting.

I love the washes in her fur on the hoodie, I love her eyes sort of like Mona…they seem to follow me. I love that it reminds me to get of my house and get up high to see City lights because they are beautiful. And mostly I love this because it represents not giving up on something, (or somebody) just because it gets off to a bad start.

How you can get a Fine Art Print of this:


©Julia Hayashi 2015


November 18, 2015


The Art of Exploring