Telegraph Avenue Tie-Dye, ink & watercolor

Telegraph Avenue Tie-Dye, ink & watercolor, 4.5x6"

This month the San Francisco Bay Area is the locale for the Virtual Paintout (we paint from a Google Maps street view image). At first I was disappointed; I live in the Bay Area so I wouldn’t get to explore new territory like last month when we painted Corsica.

It seemed a little silly to paint from a map picture instead of from life but having just spent the afternoon on Telegraph Avenue, it seemed a natural subject. This tie-dye T-shirt stand is practically a permanent fixture on the corner of Telegraph and Bancroft.

Although it’s right across the street from the University of California Berkeley campus, I don’t think I’ve seen a student wearing tie-dye since around 1975. Even old hippies don’t wear tie-dye anymore. So who buys these things?

I felt like painting in oils, but watercolor seemed a better medium for this subject. So I printed out the image (which I cropped from the original Google snapshot) and then sketched and painted the scene in my sketchbook. Here’s the original map and image on Google.

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Category:
Berkeley, Outdoors/Landscape, Places, Sketchbook Pages, Virtual Paint-Out, Watercolor
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Join the conversation! 14 Comments

  1. It must be fun having some idea of where you are “driving” on Street View. I did an awful lot of exploring before I found something that called to me. Your watercolor is great fun, the shirts look almost like a garden in full bloom. I also like the way the arrow on the road leads your eye back into the center of the image. This Virtual Paintout is lots of fun, I think.

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    • Thanks for your great comments, especially about the way I cropped the composition, since it’s something I’m working on right now. I also thought the left arrow was symbolic since Berkeley is very much to the left! Jana

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  2. Maybe your local knowledge has added flavour to this scene because it’s so colourful and atmospheric. It must be interesting to see how others from around the world put their interpretations on this lovely city of yours. x

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    • Thanks Gillian. It is fun to see what others are doing and the spots they’ve picked. I’m amazed at some of the really scenic images people found, without so much road! Jana

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  3. Wow, this brings back memories. M.A., class of ’93, who crossed the street there countless times. As to who buys those shirts, tourists! They come to see the “hippies” and buying one of those shirts is like buying Mickey Mouse ears at Disneyland.

    I love this concept of painting from Street View! This is a beautiful, lively, successful painting.

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  4. I like this 🙂

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  5. This is a lovely optimistic painting. Google are intrusive aren’t they. There are pics of our house and neighbouring house (over a year ago though before it was pulled down and units ut up). Tie dye has come around again it seems. Once upon a time I taught tie dye and batik to Fijian kids and it was great fun. Those were the days my friend..I thought they’d never end…
    Wendy

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    • Thanks Wendy. That’s interesting to call a painting optimistic. I was in a good and optimistic mood when I painted it, after being down in the dumps for a couple of weeks. My house and car and garden are on google too, in a pretty recent photo. I thought about painting my own house and then decided against it. I too used to make batiks, and actually was a street artist right up there on Telegraph Avenue in the early 70s, selling my batiked T-shirts and halter tops and later my ceramics.

      Jana Bouc Sketchblog: http://JanasJournal.com Website: http://JanaBouc.com

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  6. The colors are so vibrant! Wonderful choice of location and composition!

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  7. I saw this posted on the VPO site and had to come visit. I love the intense colors the tie-dye gives to this. I had fun roaming around your blog. I think I may have visited before, maybe from one of the other blogs we seem to have in common. Enjoy!!

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  8. Hi Jana,
    I like the idea of the Virtual paintout. I really must look into it. I was in San Fran in Dec & Jan past, staying in Berkeley, so was very interested in your site. Lovely work and full of life. We had dinner at Chez Pannez. Very nice, and paintable.
    Cheers,
    Erin

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