The Aldred Building

There’s much more to The Aldred Building than what’s in my sketch. In fact some say it was Montreal’s first skyscraper — or at the very least the first Art Deco building — but from my vantage point looking down the hill in Chinatown I could only see the top of it. Plus, the buiding was backlit so I couldn’t make out much of the detailing in the limestone but the buildings in front of it created some interesting overlapping rectangles. I hope to get back into town one of these days to sketch it again.


13 Comments on “The Aldred Building”

  1. Paula Seixas says:

    Which pen do you use, Shari?


  2. Lee Kline says:

    The details of the building are not critical, but your comment on the overlapping rectangles is exactly the sort of observation/teaching I have come to expect from your postings. Thanks so much for being you, Shari.


  3. Excellent watercolor !


  4. George O says:

    That’s my favorite building in Montreal, a hidden Art Deco jem.


  5. rebecca says:

    I respond to the colors in this….I love a punch of red, the earthy yellow…and blue sky.


  6. Suzy says:

    isn’t this the building that is a copy of the Empire State building


  7. ludovic oriol says:

    Hello Shari
    I really like your paintings and appreciate you share them with us.
    Just a little question : how do you obtain the beige (like sand) color in the low part of the biggest building ?


    • Hi Ludovic,
      Thanks for writing. Those sand colours are so hard to obtain. Usually what I do is start with a puddle of diluted raw sienna. Into that I usually add a bit of Alizarin Crimson and maybe some Cobalt Blue, both transparent colours. You can see that there’s quite a bit of red in the mix but you don’t want to put an opaque red like Cadmium. If the colour is too strong, just dilute it a bit and test it on a scrap of paper. It will always dry a little lighter.


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