Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Custard Dish and Spoon

3/9/10 "Custard Dish with Spoon", 8" x 8", Oil
I'm not actually sure this is a custard dish, but it was fun to paint.  This painting is a little abstract and I was having fun with saturated color.

One of my subscribers asked me about how I prep the panels, what kind of gesso I use and how I lay in the paint.  I either use cut pre-primed linen for these smaller paintings, or more frequently, panels made from 4-ply all cotton rag museum board.  I get the museum board in 32 x 40 sheets and seal them on both sides with Gamblin PVA glue.  Then I roll on (with fine white roller) three coats of Basic Liquitex Gesso (not Liquitex Pro) to one side of the sheet.  Then sometimes I put an imprimatura (transparent toned ground) on the entire sheet.  Lately I've been using ivory black/ultramarine mixture diluted in Gamsol.  I put this on with a large foam brush.  Then I cut the panels with my mat cutter.  Of course everything has to dry in between layers.

I usually start the painting with a rough structural sketch (meaning placement/design rather than detail), then a thin layer of paint (not diluted with turp or spirits) using a big brush such as a #10 filbert or #10 round bristle brush) with big flat shapes of color to develop the value structure of the design and the color structure of the design.  Then I go back with thicker paint to work and finish the painting.  It doesn't always go like this from start to finish--if something is not working, then I may scrape off paint or redefine the design with structural lines.  This is just a general outline.

Hope this answers the questions!

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