Impressionist masters like Monet and Pisarro recognized the emotional resonance of color. The subtlest variation in background color can uplift, inspire, or intrigue the viewer. Blue Boulevard is my attempt to work this kind of color magic, that is, to take a neutral scene filled with many shades of white and charge it with life and emotion.
My task is facilitated by the fact that there is a full rainbow of off-white tones from which to choose. When white is tinted with yellow, it energizes the atmosphere. When a touch of rose is added, it brings the quietude of dusk into a painting and when a hint of blue is mixed in, it has the ability to calm the eye and cool the emotions.
In Blue Boulevard, the atmosphere is tinged with a cool blue/grey. It is a snowy winter evening and a blustery wind whips the snowflakes while bundled up pedestrians scurry to find warmer destinations. Distant buildings are half obscured by fog, but offer warm sanctuary as evidenced from the glowing window lights. The blue mood conveys the chill of the atmosphere and the struggle townspeople have in walking the slippery streets and frozen sidewalks.
The wintery effects allow me to warm the overall atmosphere by using accent colors; mauves, pinks, aquamarines which remind us that a brisk winter evening can be stimulating as well as serene. I suggest the activity of a bustling turn-of–the century crowd by painting the walkers and carriage riders with broad strokes. This painting allows one to emotionally escape into a nostalgic wintery scene without ever having to put on a wool coat or take a chance with slipping on the ice.
The gleam of streetlamps and shop windows brightens my Blue Boulevard with radiant light, reminding us that God’s warmth is present, even on blustery winter evenings.