Earlier this week, we went to The Ringling – The John & Mable Ringling Museum of Art, connected with the State Art Museum of Florida and Florida State University in Sarasota. The Ringling occupies 66 acres on Sarasota Bay and the gardens, which feature hundreds of exotics and native trees, are free and open to the public daily. I snapped a couple of photos at the Visitors Pavillon of this lion statue and thought it would make a good subject for a study in my watercolor sketchbook with the lovely colors, greenery and light.
Today, I looked back at the photo on my cell phone and sketched first in pencil, and then I painted with watercolor. Our visit was a short one and we didn’t get to see very much because we had a lot of errands to do that day, but I’m glad we stopped by, and I look forward to going back to The Ringling to see exhibits there, as well as explore more of their wonderful offerings, especially the Circus Museum. The little scene I captured with my camera and in my sketchbook, though, sums up the essence of the place – with its Floridian colors, the statute of an icon member in a circus, the tropical leaves, and also if you look very closely, the architecture which is Venetian Gothic, a style that the Ringlings’ loved (Italy was one of their favorite vacation spots).