You can’t spit in Bern without hitting a fountain (Brunnen). This fountain is on the main street (Marktgasse) just west of the Zytglogge, and hence it is a major tourist photo op. I’ve painted many fountains — being one of the major themes in my brief painting career. The major advantage is they stand very still and can be captured at leisure. I have a bucket list item to paint all the fountains of Bern, but there’s still lots of time.

This painting has been on the back-burner for a while — like from August last year — but other things get in the way and priorities shift; you know. I’m pleased with the focal point - where things with more importance are darker and accentuated, but it could be even better if the fountain was given higher contrast. The background actually took the longest time, since it has so much detail relative to the fountain. I tried to make the ‘cloud effect’ where the edges are omitted and only suggestions of background are portrayed, but alas, the skill still escapes me.

There are many other failed attempts — like portraying the gold leaf of the fountain and the pink sandstone gargoyles, and weathered basement doors, etc. Don’t judge without trying it yourself.

Data Description
Title Schützenbrunnen
Artist Derrick Oswald
Medium Watercolour on acid-free, cellulose, fine-grained, natural-white paper
Dimensions (w × h cm) 29.7 × 42
Date 2024

watercolour of Schützenbrunnen

original photograph of the Schützenbrunnen



A Canadian electrical engineer living in Switzerland, developing software for over 40 years, e.g. big data for electric distribution utilities and the cloud security space, but now retired.

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