Friday, March 30, 2012

Wreck No.10

oil on papered canvas 31x25cm

At last, the first finished painting this year. There’s nothing subtle about the composition, but I’m quite pleased with the paint handling.

The wreck itself is done with streaky thin paint. It’s thinned with turpentine plus a touch of linseed oil, and the hard edges are cut back using a firm chisel-edged brush and turpentine. There’s very little opaque paint here, and what is there is thin and surprisingly orange (thin pale paint tends to go blue-ish on top of darks – something learned disguising glue lines in my antique restoration days).

I tried all sorts of oily paint/blending/glaze effects to get a strong light on the earth and sky, which may or may not actually be as effective as the idea in my head, and may be overworked. What is definitely successful is the overall contrast between the wreck and its setting – light/dark, light/heavy, soft/hard, and in this case oily/lean.

Just to follow up January’s post with SSA/VAS show: It was on during February and many good words were spoken about my pieces – by fellow painters – which was quite a boost, and it’s very healthy to have my profile raised a bit. The Union Gallery have also given me a huge boost of encouragement (which almost brought on a swoon), and some good advice about the gallery scene, which, with a bit of luck, may lead to more exposure.

All this positivity is all very well, but there’s a part of me (the greying mousy-brown bit) that suspects that it only came about because I am still blond from last year’s Punk Xmas.

Lord only knows what would have happened if I’d not been wearing glasses…