|Sharon Wright in the hot seat once again.|
is technique-- prowess with a brush, liberal use of oil paints, loose, but wisely applied , impressionistic, expressionist, a fine example of my temperament. Max didn't have any of those qualities.
The application of oil paint is very different from the application of acrylics, the paint I've been using for fifty years. With acrylics, I have no qualms, no hang ups, no self consciousness, just a free wheeling brush, a series of jars filled with colors whisked to the right consistency and my own excitement, energy, bravado.
With oils, I am suddenly face to face with paste laid out like colorful worms on the painting table. These pasty worms inhibit me. They cause me to stiffen up, to lay down picayune brushstrokes, blnd to a dull gray death --OR to resort to smearing them on the canvas with the palette knife, my finger, a spatula, whatever tool comes to mind. Rain was done that way. Rain ironically lacks fluidity. I am not comfortable using either technique. I love swinging my whole body into the gesture, for painting to me is an active sport. After my color squares, technique and application methods are on my mind--and on page 172 of Richard Schmid's Alla Prima. To quote: "Boring paintings happen if we adopt techniques that do not arise from our individuality." Oil paints squeezed out of the tubes just isn't doing it for me.
Dissatisfied twice with Max. I had to wipe him out with lots of mineral spirits and plenty of paper toweling. Then out of nowhere I squeezed about a quarter cup of my precious Titanium into a food storage container and added mineral spirits and whisked the mix till I had the consistency I liked with my acrylics--not too thick where it clogs the fabric, not too thin where it's runny and transparent. Using a 2" house painting brush dipped straight down in about half an inch lifted and shook gently till it didn't drip, I Xed him out while maintaining the beautiful grain of the canvas. The canvas was tacky dry when I checked it this morning. It should be ready for Max by tomorrow. Conserving the canvas was a nice, but seeing that oils could be premixed into a fluid state of various consistencies opened up possibilities previously never considered. Sharon will be the first recipient of my new find. An interesting experience it will be!
I also appreciated Ben Lustenhauwer's video demonstrations on portraiture. The first of his show the use of photography in starting portraits including starting them with a live sitter the traditional way. The last video added a tool to my portraiture box-- calipers. While I have one for drafting, it isn't big enough for canvas size portrait work. One that is is now on my shopping list. Also on my shopping list is an LED300 Digital Art Projector. Portraiture is a business. Business requires proficiency. Camera lenses, calipers offer a method of speeding things up.
Have a good weekend. Squeeze out that paint. Squeeze in a video. And draw, draw, draw in the sun hopefully.