16 July 2012

More fruit ...

8 x 8 inches oil on Blick Studio panel

Day two:
.... now where was I? .... ah, yes - painting surfaces .......
Right, off we go again: I tried Winsor & Newton oil priming on hardboard but it was very thick. ent on quite patchy and needed a lot of sanding to level it out and it still wasn't that great to paint on. At least the acrylic dries faster so I am back to that.
I give the hardboard one coat of acrylic size and four coats of gesso (sanded between each coat with 500 gauge paper) and a final coat of Liquin tinted with burnt umber or an opaque warm grey.

I think I'll prattle on about mediums in the next post (maybe tomorrow) as I have tried so many of them (almost an addict to buying any one I can get my hands on).

This tangerine is following on in the 'trompe' series. Unfortunately the photo looks rather flat but in real life the peel does appear to be coming out of the surface (yet another compromise .... photographs ;-).

... to be continued

15 July 2012

Lemons Trompe

15.5 x 12.5 inches oil on hardboard

Following on from my last post, I have continued the theme of 'trompe l'oeil' (fool the eye) and will have two more to post over the next few days.
They do take longer than the usual paintings because of the effect I am trying to achieve of making them look as though they are coming out of the surface.

detail - twice life size

I have gone back to using Liquin Original as my medium after some scary mishaps with experiments with traditional and modern varnish mediums. Last month I had to sand down (!) and wash two paintings with turps (very scary) to strip off the varnish. Luckily, all turned out well with only minor retouching ..... phew!!!!!

A lot of painting is a compromise for me:
I never seem to find the 'just right' surface to paint on, medium to paint with or brushes with the right feel. I keep experimenting but I usually have to settle on something I am not 100% happy with.
For anyone interested here are some examples:
Surfaces .... I have tried cotton, linen, ready gessoed panels of different kinds of board (oil primed and acrylic primed) and self primed hardboard (oil and acrylic). 
Firstly, I have always found acrylic gesso too absorbent and the surface doesn't become optimal for me until after at least four coats of underpainting when it becomes mostly non-absorbent and the colours don't 'sink in' (when the oil is absorbed from the new paint by the layer below leaving the new colours dull and chalky the next day - this is easily solved by 'oiling out'* though). Oiling out involves brushing (or in my case, using fingers) to put a very, very thin coat of medium over the dull areas. This is also great to paint into and helps with blending into the layer below. It is also sometimes referred to as a couche/couch (which means 'a coat/layer' in French: sous couche=under coat).

This looks like it is going to waffle on more that I though so I will continue it in the next post ;-)

......to be continued