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Thursday, July 23, 2009

An Urban Scene on Yupo Synthetic Paper

Parallel Lives
Watercolor on Yupo, 26x20 inches

“Parallel Lives” has been selected for the 2009 New Trends Show of the Colorado Watercolor Society. This was only my 3rd painting on Yupo synthetic paper. Yupo is actually made out of plastic, and was developed originally for the advertising industry. I was introduced to this new material earlier this year, by instructor Mark Mehaffey, and have become a fan of the way it allows for interesting texture work, and keeps colors very strong and vibrant.

Some watercolorists are reluctant to use Yupo, or believe you cannot do very controlled, detailed work on this slick surface. Well, no one told me that… I went in and started painting with the same combination of controlled and loose areas as usual.

I’ve chosen synthetic paper for this street scene of San Francisco, as I wanted a more abstract treatment to emphasize the symbolic meaning of the lives running in parallel on the cable car lines. Lives seem to converge and merge, but never actually do, we all follow our individual paths…

Parallel Lives (detail)

In a future post, I will discuss the techniques for working with watercolor on Yupo.


  1. My comment in the post about parallel lives is based on Joseph Conrad in Heart of Darkness: "[...] it is impossible to convey the life-sensation of any given epoch of one's existence--that which makes its truth, its meaning--its subtle and penetrating essence. It is impossible. We live, as we dream--alone...."

  2. That is fantastic Marcio, really fine. I'm very impressed. I also remember you got that new magazine, I have a feeling Salzmann's work appeals to you.