Liverpool Street Station – Original Painting
About the image:
Liverpool Street Station. Why do clock towers magnetically draw the eye? Is it their round faces, or because they distinctly mark the passage of time?
Liverpool Street Station Clock Marks Our Times
Time. Ever elusive. We know it passes, yet we can’t touch, see, or feel it whiz by. Clock hands give us solid evidence of the invisible and hidden reality. If someone would ask “Do you know what time is?”, you might answer, “Yes and No!” It does not really matter since it is a debatable point and right now distracts us from the painting. Maybe another time?
There’s that jolly word again!
Portals to Travel
Liverpool Street Station stands illuminated against intense indigo and Prussian blue sky interspersed with deep red. The dark dramatic backdrop contrasts with the brightly lit evening scene: the original station front marred by a glass-domed structure over the steps.
London’s railway station entrances often efficiently serve a dual purpose: a portal to both the mainline and underground railways. The integrated transport system renders cars unnecessary, yet they remain popular. Public transport does have a downside – many people use it which can sometimes be too many to cope with.
I write this during the pandemic and wonder what changes to expect when we return to “normal”. But that’s another rabbit hole we will pass by today.
Busy Travelers at Liverpool Street Station
Stations are often busy places and Liverpool Street Station is no exception. The scene includes only a few people. A man stands, hands in pockets, talking to another person at the bottom left. We can only see a hand, arm, and torso by the column with a brilliantly lit globe lamp on top, its details lost in the glare. The centered companion light displays the decoration hidden by its partner. If we follow the columns down to the right, another pair of men stand in conversation, perhaps whiling away time, waiting for a taxi.
If you were to compare Liverpool Street Station to some London architecture, it might seem restrained. Yet, to the keen observer, it hides intricate details amid the clean lines. Gothic arches with multi-paned windows. Carved details in the ‘lampstand’ columns. And see the delicate cutwork detail in the two iron lamps?
Clocks Guard Time
Then there’s that clock standing guard over the scene.
Roman numerals are backlit on a simple tower top. A fussy little belfry caps the tower which is mirrored on the left, partly hidden behind lights and canopies. The clock, ever watchful, is essential for travellers sticking to time before a train. It almost grants permission to grab a bite to eat from a fast-food outlet, before rushing a passenger on to the correct platform “just in tme” before the whistle blows.
Creation: Masking fluid is painted onto watercolour paper to create an image. This is covered with a watercolour wash and covered with clingfilm. The picture is further developed using acrylic inks once the film is removed. The masking is removed after several layers are added and allowed to dry. Revealing the final picture.