>Sketch of a Sinking St. Mark’s Square


During the past few weeks, I have been working on the concept for my next beaded painting. For me, this is most often a thought process more than anything else. I decided that I want to start creating beaded paintings of some of the places I visit. My next subject will be inspired by this photo I took with my iphone when I was in Venice, Italy last August. Basilica di San Marco & Campanile in St. Mark’s Square

beaded beadwork Venice Italy St. Marks Square campanile erosion Basilica photo photoshop sketch jiri kolar
 Since I returned from Venice, this city has remained in my heart and mind. Perhaps because this photo has been the wallpaper on my phone since the day I took it, and every time I look at it, I am reminded of exactly how fragile the city of Venice is. For those of you who have never visited Venezia, St. Mark’s Square is the lowest point on the island, and therefore floods quite often during Acqua Alta season – sometimes up to a meter of water – and visitors must wear tall boots and/or walk on raised platforms to get around. I am certain that these floods have more of an effect on the city than the eye can see… 
Something about this photo has haunted me. As you can see, the Campanile (bell tower of St. Mark’s Basilica) appears to be slightly tilted, and every person I show the photo to comments on this right away. (Some have even mistaken it for the Leaning Tower of Pisa!) The Basilica has been standing since the 11th century, but I read that the Campanile is a reconstruction. It was first completed in the 1500’s, but in 1902 the bell tower did indeed collapse due to a crack in the side of the building. It was then rebuilt over a period of 10 years. Compared to the rest of the city, the tower is almost brand new. I have determined that the tower looks tilted due to the fact that I took the photo with my mobile phone instead of my real camera, but then again, I am not so sure. I can’t help but to think that perhaps my photo is foretelling what may become of these precious landmarks if Piazza San Marco is not saved from the effects of this constant flooding… 

beaded beadwork Venice Italy St. Marks Square campanile erosion Basilica photo photoshop sketch jiri kolar

With that in mind, I opened up Photoshop, and played around with the pic. Inspired by Czech collage artist Jiří Kolář‘s images of Prague, I did a little digital cutting & pasting. Using the Polygonal Lasso tool, I created few jagged layers of the Basilica & Campanile. I created what looks like a sinking St. Mark’s Basilica & eroding Campanile. I used this digital image to create the following sketch. This is how my beaded painting will begin…

beaded beadwork Venice Italy St. Marks Square campanile erosion Basilica photo photoshop sketch jiri kolar

8 responses to “>Sketch of a Sinking St. Mark’s Square

  1. >I really appreciate that you share your thoughts and design process, even to the details of cutting the felt. Thanks so much. This piece will be in a museum some day!Robin A.

  2. >Love your new piece. I studied for a semester of college in Florence and absolutly love Italy. I did a day trip all on my own to Venece and still remeber how wavy the floor of St. Marks was. Truly amazing that it is still standing.

  3. >Thanks for the insight to your creative process. I will be following it with great interest.

  4. >Mmm, this is really interesting! Thanks for sharing your process — I'm always interested in how people do their work.

  5. >ooooh this is going to be exciting

  6. >this one looks like it'll be interesting! ill be looking forward to seeing what you come up with next :)

  7. >That collage and drawing is amazing. What a great process!

  8. >It's wonderful to get glimpse in to your creative process. Can't wait to watch this one develop and the eventual finished piece.