Painting in watercolor requires alternating strokes of patience and boldness, a mixture that’s hard to achieve consistently. Years of practice, however, can hone the skills of both hand and eye, and, with luck, there comes a point at which a seasoned practitioner of the art can hit a sweet spot where technique becomes second nature and ability can stand head to head with vision.
Pittsfield resident Marguerite Bride seems to have reached such a spot in her latest work, shown this month in the exhibit Passports: A Watercolor Journey, which offers a virtual tour of idyllic European locations in Paris, London, Galway, Tuscany and various islands and villages. Bride’s smooth and fluid style captures the colors, gradients and textures of buildings, machines, water and plant life with considerable rendering ability, and also conveys a warm European sunlight that one can almost feel beating down gently on a vacationing back. It’s an effect that’s transporting, and delivers a sense of place and time that’s palpable enough to induce a yearning for the environments depicted.
Opening reception: Aug. 2, 5-8 p.m. (during Pittsfield’s First Friday Arts Walk), through Aug. 31, Gallery 25, 25 Union St., Pittsfield, (413) 464-2127, http://www.margebride-paintings.com.