Artist Kimberly Cammerata uses watercolor to capture the light and rich detail of Italy.
As a watercolor artist, I love vibrant color and light. This is the first thing that draws me to a subject. I do a lot of painting in Italy, and love the epic scale of the landscape and how the Italians have inhabited it with glorious architecture and storybook villages.
They also have a zest for life, La Dolce Vita, which I portray in my work. This is the thing that captivates people about Italy—not just the beauty, but the feeling.
Many of my clients have been to Italy and they tell me that I capture the sparkle and the detail of what it’s like to be there. This makes me so happy because it is exactly what I set out to do! If you love Italy but haven’t been there, then my work is a chance to experience a little bit of that feeling from your home.
The light is different in the Mediterranean. It has a vibrance and clarity that is unique. For me, watercolor is the perfect way to capture this. I love how the translucency of watercolor allows you to see the paper through the color. This creates a lightness and freshness in the painting that mirrors the Mediterranean landscape.
Italian architecture is colorful. The terrain is dotted with ancient towns and lively cities in shades of ochre, pink, red, apricot and burnt sienna.
Along with the golden colors of stone and marble, it is a feast for the eyes. Villages and palazzos alike are embellished with sculpture, fountains and magnificent gardens. If that’s not enough, then there are the miles of coastline never far away. But whatever the region, it’s a joy to paint it all.
My paintings are rich in detail. I love to immerse myself in the nuances that make a place unique. To me, the details bring the painting to life and make it identifiable as a specific place. This is important, because I actually travel to each location, observe and study it to accurately portray its essence. I have developed watercolor techniques that are all my own to create this level of precision.
Perspective, a system developed in Renaissance Italy, is also important to my paintings. I love to use my rulers and T-squares to get the lines just right so it comes to life on the paper. This is the underlying structure and design that form the basis of each piece.
My work is a combination of the looseness of watercolor with attention to details. The push and pull between these seemingly opposing forces creates an interplay and liveliness that captures the viewer. My goal is to portray the beauty of the area so the viewer wants to feel immersed in it.
One might wonder why I choose Italy. I am half Italian—Sicilian to be exact. I can’t help but want to share my love the country and its culture.
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