Why I Suddenly Had to Make Some San Francisco Art

I have a lot of strong opinions about decor and how exactly things should be arranged. In my office / art studio I have three stunning prints of San Francisco. They’re each a distinct style and all have a blue/red/yellow color palette.

Now, here’s where my slight obsession with perfectionism comes into play. I’m not one to meticulously measure and calculate when hanging art; I usually just eyeball it and call it good. However, this laissez-faire approach can sometimes lead to unintended consequences. In this case, my beloved San Francisco prints are not perfectly centered on the wall, and I know it’s going to drive me nuts over time if I don’t do something about it.

Rather than taking them down, fixing the wall and painstakingly rehanging them, I had a somewhat whimsical thought – why not create some San Francisco art myself? How hard can that be, right? So much easier to spend tons of hours making more art rather than tackling the three-piece rehanging ordeal! 🙂

My first attempt at making some San Francisco art is from a photo I snapped many years ago, somewhere in the middle of San Francisco. The photo, unfortunately, was quite dark and unsuitable for a print on its own. But it served as the perfect reference for a painting.

I enjoyed creating this piece until the last stretch, working on the windows was especially difficult and tedious. I kept looking at it on my art table, dreading having to come back to it to add all that meticulous detail. Took me quite a while, but in the end, the effort was well worth it.

As it turns out, the finished piece is too blue, it doesn’t go well with the other three pieces on the wall. So, on to attempt number two: “San Francisco Boat.”

I also took this photo a long ass time ago, maybe 15 years or so. I’ve always been captivated by the triad color scheme, the shades of blue, yellow, and red really tickle me. But the boat and the background don’t look so great. They’re too busy, dirty and industrial-looking. Which is why this photo is perfect for a painting resource.

With some artistic magic, I managed to bring out all the elements I adored about the image. I’m absolutely thrilled with the way it turned out. Now I have a hard time looking at that dingy original photo! 🙂

The collection is still not technically centered, but it does look better. I should have bought a bigger frame. 🙂

Both of these pieces are available on Etsy as originals and prints in a category I’m calling “Photo to Painting.” Although I initially intended to hang the boat with my trio, it turned out to be a bit too large, so I used a smaller print instead. That means the original is up for grabs if you’d like to make it yours!

Get the SF City  /  Get the SF Boat

And that’s a wrap on my San Francisco art – at least until I stumble upon another photo that could be just a little bit better as a watercolor (or acrylics).

Have you ever taken a photo that was almost awesome?

Would it make a good painting?

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