"Fresh Oysters" was painted on location in Guyavitos, a tiny fishing village on the western coast of Mexico. My family, students and I were enjoying a luxurious resort, but not happy that it looked transplanted from Miami. I chatted with a taxi driver about someplace that was authentic Mexico that we could get to fairly quickly. He extolled the virtues of this little town - Guyavitos. We left early one morning and drove a couple of hours south, finally being deposited at "Juan's Restaurante y Palapas". The restaurant was swept clean of sand, open to the ocean breezes, had a restroom of sorts and the music was a bearable level. We settled in under palm thatched umbrellas on the GORGEOUS beach. Late afternoon, after lunch of a wonderful fresh red snapper and shrimp on the grill cooked by Juan himself, I began this painting. I love the bronzed figures reflecting in the wet sand and the oyster entrepreneur who arrived with his modified wheelbarrow to sell that morning's catch. My husband, Richard (the guy in the hat) posed for me beside the oyster seller and this painting was the result. MY FAVORITE day of that vacation!
About the painting: I saved the white of the paper for the shirt, hat and waves. No paint white is ever as brilliant and reflective as is the paper. I studied the pattern of the waves with the wet sand, the foaming shallows at sea's edge (calligraphy with several colors to show sand peeping through) and that under curl as the wave begins to break where the color is so intense yet transparent. I used a combination of thalo green and thalo blue for that. All the paints I used in this piece are very transparent. My goal as a watercolorist is to capture a moment in time and the brilliance of the play of light on the objects.
I hope whoever chooses to own this painting will allow it to carry him/her to memories of a wonderful beach.