Thursday, March 5, 2015

Havana, Cuba: The Malecon

Greetings from snowy New York.  We are having our third blizzard in five days, so that has me thinking about the great weather we had in Cuba. One of my favorite things that I did in Cuba was to paint the sunset along the Malecon drive.  The Malecon is a five mile road and seawall that stretches along the coast of Havana. It is a busy road with very fast moving cars, but the main attraction is the sea wall and the incredible views, especially at sunset.

We drove down the Malecon every day on our way into town and on our second to last night, we decided to try and paint the sunset.  The sunsets there are amazing.  I've never before painted a sunset, but decided to give it a try.


The seawall is right along the road.  The waves come splashing up against it and sometimes people get soaked, but that does not stop everyone from walking along the promenade, meeting up with friends, and it seems to be the place for lovers to watch the sunset.

I took these photos at the beginning of the trip.  We asked our cab driver to pull over so we could take some sunset photos and he was kind enough to do it, even though traffic on the road is insane.

We had spent the day painting on the Paseo de Marti, so we grabbed a pedicab and headed over to the Malecon around 6pm.

Our wonderful pedicab driver

The pedicab was a wild ride, but a much more humane option than the horse drawn carriages.  Our driver was great and he even came to pick us up when we were done.

This was the view that I painted.  I set up my easel and paints, then got to work getting the canvas covered.  I knew I did not have much time, so I painted as fast as I could.  If you have read this blog for any length of time, you know that I am a very slow painter, so this was definitely a challenge.

School girls walking along the seawall

I painted as fast as I could for about 45 minutes.  I got just enough done to show the basic idea of what the sunset looked like.

I stopped at this point and just watched the incredible scene happening before me.

The little painting will never be finished, but it will always be a lovely reminder of a day spent with a dear friend in an incredible place.