Recently I have painted part of a buffalo, it sounds corny but it looks great, and now I am busy with a rhino. I find that I enjoy using alien colours here and there, giving different nuances to the painting. For example the buffalo is made up of indigo, purple, French ultramarine Allirizin crimson, yellow ochre, a little ivory black and Van Dyk brown for the shadows and Titanium white. It was great fun doing it. After the exhibition I will think about posting it on this blog if it has not been sold.
I was about to coat pieces of chicken with flour and my son who is a good cook suggested I put the flour and spices in a plastic bag together with the pieces of chicken and shake it all about and voila! I suppose that is how intelligent people do it. So I retrieved a saved plastic bag, and did as he said. I shook and shook and quite frankly the chicken pieces went one way and the flour went up in a cloud of dust – the bag had holes in it!. It then came down partly over me and the rest over the floor. The chicken was coated but now lay is an amazing pattern on the floor. Piccasso, here I come, but not with paint on canvas – rather with chicken on floor!
Today I have my little artists arriving for the class. I was extremely nervous when I began teaching such young children, as I thought I’d have no patience, but I absolutely love them. I cannot believe what they are capable of, it is amazing, and they are eager to achieve. I have one little girl who, although the loudest sometimes, and full of mischief, who listens intently to what I tell her to do. Her drawings are incredible for her age and she paints well too. I spoke to her grandmother and said I was going to push her. Well she overheard me, and when my adults arrived she announced that SHE was the only artist in my kids class! Delightful!
I began writing my blog a few days ago. You must understand that I only know about art and writing novels, so writing blogs is something out of my ken. I didn’t know I had to publish a new post every time, so I added and added to the last one. Perhaps now I will get it right!
My apologies, I would like to stay and chat, but I am busy with an urgent commission and only this morning I realised there was something wrong with the lady’s face. She has her face cocked to one side, and silly me, I had the nose set straight on the face instead of also cocking it to one side – so it seems like I coc… it up! I have to run and fix it before I forget what I was going to do! I will let you know the outcome!
Okay so yesterday’s problem is solved. Now today I have to paint her husband and I hope he doesn’t give me as much hassle as she did.
This morning I opened up my computer as usual and wanted to move the Microsoft Office icon. So I did what I always do when I want to rearrange my icons for quick accessibility; I clicked on the icon and moved it, but as usual I was impatient, and busy doing something else on another window at the same time, multi-tasking I am told. Voila! I lost it! Yes, I lost my Microsoft Office icon. I went searching and again being impatient I decided to go onto Internet and download an upgrade. The best thing I could have done, because now it is faster than ever. I got it back plus!
It is time for my meeting with a man on my canvas!
The man that I commenced painting yesterday has a cauliflower ear. The photo I am working from is small, and together with the fact that I have never met he or his wife is rather a draw back. I phoned the woman who gave me the commission (“a present for our Pastor”, she said) and asked her what she wanted – a natural ear or a cauliflower ear. She replied “You are the professional, you will know best”! Well that did not help at all. I could give him a natural ear, but what if I decided to give him a tomato ear, because that is what I would do – the whacky side of me. However, I have to be good and it will be a natural ear.
Enough about the portrait. It’s done!
A few days ago I primed a canvas with acrylic gesso. Usually after applying gesso (3 layers in different directions) I give it a light sanding.
I then drew my image and gave it a coat of cremnitz white and distilled turps. This is almost a transparent layer to cover the drawing, so that the pencil or charcoal does not mix with the paints. At this stage, after my gesso had been dry for three days, that I saw a bump on the canvas. I had missed a blob of gesso when sanding.
I tried sanding it down, but it was taking ages and the area was getting bigger and bigger. Then I tried turpentine, and that went sliding over the top without effect. I also tried removing it gently with a knife – no go, so I went to my son and asked if he had thinners. I took the thinners and began removing layer after layer. Next, I was left with a hole which went right through to the bare original canvas. The gesso had peeled away like a layer of rubber masking liquid, you will see it peeling on the right of the picture. I tried to fill the hole with more gesso, but alas it was another canvas thrown under the bed!