Tips and Studies

Stretching canvas

While it’s true that I didn’t learn anything about painting at art school, it isn’t true that I didn’t learn anything at all.  I learned a lot about printmaking, and I learned how to stretch canvases. That canvas-stretching skill has stood me in good stead.  I can’t think of a single instance when the technique…

Painting nuts and bolts

My homemade palette has provided good service for several years. It has enough room to muck about in, but it’s not so large that it’s difficult to move or clean.  I converted the glass-framed reproduction I found at a secondhand shop into an everyday palette by removing the print and then painting the backing a middle…

Wonderful sun-thickened oil

I’ve written about my everyday-medium plenty of times.  I frequently modify my medium for certain situations.  Sometimes, for example, I add a little Venice turpentine to the regular turpentine I use in my medium.  I add a very small amount of the sticky Venice turpentine to the medium. Other times, I add a small amount of sun-thickened…

Turpentine diaries 10/22/17

To some, my studio might look like a jumbled mess, but to me, it looks ordered and purposeful.  I have three easels. I use the third one, the one not shown, for drawings.  I expanded my palette from my habitual dozen colors to what you see now on my home-made palette.  Just because I no longer count…

Best deal in flake white

RGH has the best deal for the all-important flake white.  Their cremnitz white extra fine is $46.25 for a 250 ml jar.  By comparison, a 237 ml jar of Williamsburg’s flake white is $57.  Old Holland, which I don’t buy because of their lurid prices, costs $172 for 225 ml tube.  That’s after heavy discounts.    The…

Turpentine diaries 7/16/17

I decided to work on my backlog of unfinished studies and small paintings. I worked on all of the paintings in the photo today, the bottom-left one last. One small study, not shown, has a problem and I’m trying to decide how to resolve it.  Before I work on a painting, I always wipe it with…

Studio journal 5/7/17

I worked on these two paintings today before my daughter and I went to the marina to work on The Betty Jane.  The left-hand painting, The Delegate, is sailing along, to use a nautical allusion.  Two days ago, I lightly varnished it with my special varnish.  Now, the surface is really sweet and the colors no longer…

Studio journal 4/30/17

The unfinished Women in Sandals is part of the Playhouse Square series.  Women in Sandals is 44″ x 60.” Here is a painting tip: If you are struggling to get light in a painting, strengthen the darks.  You might be surprised at how making the darks darker makes muddy lights shine brightly.