So, seriously, I am making a huge effort to keep this painting transparent and simple. This is not the final version, just one of a few more intermediate steps.
I was unsure how I wanted to accomplish the ripple pattern, but fortunately I had noticed a few weeks back when ice was melting on the pond behind my house that it was melting in some interesting horizontal patterns therefore took a few obligatory photos. So I superimposed a semi-transparent layer of the ice on top of my background wash photo and adjusted it till I got something I liked. After printing it out, the painting part became easy.