Whilst the system to get tickets for the Borghese Gallery seems a bit of a pain, advance booking only and timed visits limited to two hours it has its advantages. How refreshing to be in a popular place without hoards of people limiting the view, the Vatican should take note and not be so greedy. I was told the entrance cost to the Borghese was justified by the Belini's alone and I have to agree, they are incredible in the marble flesh. The paintings are not to be sniffed at either, lots of big names, Caravaggio, Rubens and others but I was particularly taken by Belini's self portraits, not bad at all for a fellow who made his living with a chisel. it was interesting seeing Bernini's version of David too, apparently he used his own features to create the very animated expression.
I spent a fair bit of time exploring the park and gardens again today too, really beautiful with lots of little surprises nestling in amongst the truly magnificent trees. I have worn out a pair of flip flops with all the walking but it's been well worth it.
I have discovered another great use for the iPad, notan sketches or two value quick studies. I am in two minds about digital art, it's certainly not something I can be bothered to learn thoroughly myself but as a tool for quick compositional experiments I found this useful, you can paint in white as well as black. So these are a couple I did sat up in bed last night from photos I took on my phone, the really interesting thing being the failures, nice photos don't necessarily translate to good paintings. Zhaoming really encouraged thumbnail sketches for landscapes as if you don't have a good basic composition to start with your painting will never be up to much. Pencil or digital, it's all the same.