Monday, September 19, 2011

Paint Pots and Drying Time


WORK IN PROGRESS: STRAWBERRY TORTE;
20" X 20"; acrylic on previously used stretched canvas


I wanted to finish this sketch in a session or two over the weekend, but life got in the way.
Drying times were as unavoidable as they are with any of the paint mediums, the Lions were winning, a very unusual and thrilling thing to watch, the Tigers had moved into the playoffs and I decided to whisk all my tube acrylics to a fluid consistency for the sake of expediency and spontaneity. That was no easy task. The whisk made the mixing easy enough. The hard part was finding the air tight paint pots.

Checking out all the drawings I have stored in Picasa Web Albums, I found that the ones I liked best were done spontaneously and quickly; they were intense, colorful, and energetic. I want those qualities on canvas. Fluid paint in pots are a step towards making that happen. Moving to a larger sized format and the necessary drying times of paint stop vigor and immediacy cold. Times out allow too much time to think, evaluate, become self conscious,and worse: become judgmental. --Leaving a painting unfinished, maybe the only way to do that?

8 comments:

  1. Hi,Linda,
    The painting looks gorgeous and DELICIOUS! Interesting topic. Your process always amazes me. I do/can not wait too long for work drying. *One reason why I chose watercolour, not oil. Timing is critical to make washes in watercolour. I use a dryer, too. Drying time is a thrilling fun time to await washes. Often very exciting. Enjoy your paintings!!
    Cheers,Sadami

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  2. This may sound ridiculous, but try re-defining what finished means. For a sketch in acrylic, this looks finished. The colors are amazing and the brushwork dynamic. I'm energized looking at it.

    Yours,

    Nanina

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  3. The things that keeps getting in my way Sadami is that I'm really not a watercolorist. I was never quite satisfied with the medium. So for most of my life I painted with oils and I still approach painting using the oil paint method--medium color draw in, dark to light. The trouble was the odors of oils made me sick. I gave all the oils away and changed to acrylics, which I suspect should be approached using watercolor methods. Old dog, new tricks. Don't think I haven't thought about going back to oils--if only as the finished layer of the painting, which is acceptable chemistry.

    I do use a hairdryer when sketching in watercolor on small drawings on absorbent paper. The dryer blows the paint around when it's on a larger canvas that I've approached as a whole. I'm afraid I'm stuck.

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  4. I haven't got a clue Nanina when a piece is finished--unless it walks out my door and I can never get my hands on it again. Thank you for your kind words, but I still need a bit of defining and smearing--and a finish varnish to get rid of the ugly plastic finish characteristic of acrylics. I am also thinking of doing another sketch using a house painter's 1" brush and positioning the painting flat on my watercolor easel rather than upright on my regular easel. A larger brush and paint pots might produce finished sooner?Who knows? I'll just keep trying.

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  5. I understand what you are saying, but ask yourself with this picture, "Am I working on a sketch or a completed painting?" If it is a sketch, walk away from it unfinished. Sketches often are. They are like a grocery list or memo. You may have said all you need to with this particular sketch. If you need to say more, start another sketch on the same subject focusing in on what the issue is. Do a series of sketches walking away from them before "completion." Do it on purpose if you must. Eventually you will have a group of sketches forming a composite of the completed painting. You will understand what you want the completed piece to look like and spend time revising the final work, not the sketch.

    Maybe look into using Fredrix (spelling) or Utrechts canvas/linen paper for sketching. I think Utrechts sells it in rolls.

    Good luck with this process. I admire your determination.

    Nanina

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  6. The answer to that question is interesting to me. This "sketch" is on canvas. I guess I don't really regard paintings on canvas as sketches, but I want to capture the same immediacy in that painting that I do with my sketches. Does that make sense Nanina? --I have a pad of canvas paper--but I also have a number of previously used stretched canvases like this one that I may as well use to see if I can accomplish what I want to accomplish without screwing up a new canvas. The larger size, 20 x 20,also challenges the spontaneity I'm after, so I am thinking big brushes.

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  7. It's looking delicious. I feel like taking one and biting into the soft pastry, tasting the soft cream... yummy!

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  8. I think that's their function Evelyn. To satisfy the taste for such without expanding the gut. Works for me. But the paintings are really about the beautiful temptations we have in front of us at the market and the bakery we should just look at and keep walking. Sugar crashes are nasty And obesity works havoc on our knees.

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