Sweet Clems 2
Oil on Panel
Yesterday I wrote about how I have been working on compositions and I thought that today I would paint exactly the same set up with some changes in my approach to show you just some of the things I’ve been getting up to with regard to composition.
The bowl and clementines are (were – I’ve eaten most of them now!) on a shelf and whereas yesterday I was directly facing the shelf, today I have lowered it so that I am looking down on it and I’ve put it at an angle. To accommodate this different composition from the the very same set up I have changed the picture plane from landscape to square. This creates an entirely different dynamic to the work.
I have also changed the surface that I am painting on. Yesterday’s painting is on linen and on this surface the paint tends to sink into the weave in the fabric. Using a thin paint application on this surface one can complete an approximate block-in and accuracy in the finished piece can be achieved with subsequent thicker layers of paint. The weave in the linen fabric also provides a ‘tooth’ which helps one achieve steady brush strokes.
Today’s painting is on gessoed* panel and there is little or no tooth so one is painting on a slippery surface in comparison to the linen – steady brush strokes aren’t so simple on this surface. If you are used to painting on linen or canvas the first time you paint on a gessoed panel is rather like riding a bicycle for the first time without stabilisers (for those of you who can remember that far back). Because there is no weave for the paint to sink into building up paint thickness on the surface is easier and the lack of weave tends to offer a more favourable surface for fine detail.
Blimey with all this background anyone would think I’m trying to promote my workshops!
Number 21 in the Paintathon
*Gesso is a water based primer used to prevent the oil paint coming into contact with the support protecting it from chemicals in the paint which over time will perish the wood. Its used on most supports including canvas and linen etc.