Turpentine diaries

Turpentine journal 11/19/17

Upsidedown. It’s useful to look at your paintings in mirrors or upsidedown, as I’ve down here.  The old rule-of-thumb maintains that a painting should be balanced when looked at normally and in a mirror.  That old rule-of-thumb still holds as far as I’m concerned.  Three Women in Sandals, part of the Playhouse Square series, looks OK…

Turpentine diaries 11/12/17

Today’s session with Booth at the Fair is my 5th. By contrast, yesterday’s sessions with On the Square was the 20th and final one.  I have a long way to go with this painting.  It’s 44″ x 60″ but it feels larger, perhaps it’s the amount of detail or the eleven figures that make it…

Turpentine diaries 11/11/17

I finished On the Square then put down my brush and took a walk. Sometimes I have to get out of the studio to cure “studio blindness,” during which I lose my objectivity and focus instead on some narrow aspect of the painting. After a 45-minute walk, I returned to the studio and the painting…

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…

Turpentine diaries 10/21/17

I finished Spring during my morning session.  I added a tiny little bit of sun-thickened oil to my usual medium.  A small amount of this oil dramatically affects the paint.  Sun-thickened oil, unlike stand oil (which I don’t like), maintains good handling qualities even when the paint is thinned to a gouache-like consistency.  Before starting, I applied…

Turpentine diaries 10/1/2017

Terrible photo but it’s dark and I’m tired so it will have to do. Man With a Baby Carriage is in the final stage–the fun stage.  If the drawing is strong, it will take you to finish line.  Drawing, like writing, can fill up with useless details that don’t advance the project when you’re tired. …

Turpentine diaries 9/24/17

The unfinished painting The Press is 40″ x 50.”  I’ve used RGH’s walnut-ground flake white for a couple of weeks and I like it more and more.  It keeps its body even when thinned to the constancy of gouache, such as the white shirts in the painting. I plan to write about preparing canvases soon.…

Turpentine diaries 9/16/17

Along 4th Street is 40″ x 50.”  The surface is very good and the painting is moving well.  When the surface is solid, I do less re-painting and things go faster. I’ve written about how much I like RGH’s Extra-fine Flake white.  That white is ground with safflower oil.  I’ve also been using walnut oil…