This plein air watercolor is of the church in the center of little Terrugia. The saying ‘castle on a hill’ makes me think of Italy… only it was a church on a hill that was the stand out point of any city on the horizon. As you drove along the hills and valleys of the countryside anytime you saw a cluster of buildings in the distance it was always set off by the steeple of the local church. Most of the churches that we saw were relatively ornate… especially the ones in the bigger cities.
This one had beautiful columns, archways and lovely paintings inside…and an unusual tree seemed to stand as sentinal just a few feet from the curved stairway that lead up to the heavy wooden front doors.
I sat in an asphalt school yard adjacent to the church under the shade of a similar tree whose trunk looked as though it was covered with scabs of colorful homemade paper.
The first day of painting there I could hear the chatter and laughter of children nearby and so I assumed that there was probably a school associated with the church. On the second day after the heat of the afternoon had passed a set of large wooden gates opened and a flood of children entered the play yard. They were swinging and I could hear balls bouncing, but I was really focusing on finishing up the painting so I only faintly noticed that footsteps were drawing slightly close behind me. I guess their curiosity got the better of them and they just had to find out what I was up to. There were giggles and then they quickly moved away…and eventually all the children filtered away from the school grounds.
There was only a little work to be finished on the painting when I closed up my supplies and headed back to the hotel. I was glad to think that I could choose a spot a bit less central in the town for my next work so I could avoid the onlookers and curious chatter of the old men who sat in the doorway of a nearby establishment.
I guess i spend too much time in solitary and feel awkward in public situations.