New Painting for 2019

IMG_4610Acrylic on Canvas – 18 x 24 inches

As with some of my other paintings, this one started life as something else.  The colors were similar, but that was about it.  You may be able to see some of them under the many layers of paint.  I have been working on this one for nearly 2 weeks now.  It has been taking a long time for the Golden Open paints to dry in this weather.  As this painting has evolved, it would sit on top of the fireplace in the dining room and I would contemplate about what I would do next once the paint has dried.  I finally figured it out this morning and I now feel that it is complete and am quite happy with it.  (The paint is still wet as I type this, so anything can happen once I leave it lying around for awhile.)  The thing about painting an abstract is that you can keep going on and on and changing it that it can sometimes be difficult to know when to stop.  It is pretty much how I wanted it to look as I had it in my mind.

I have now started something completely different just to take my mind off of this one. 🙂

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10 Reasons Why I like Canvas Boards

IMG_4526 (1)This is a canvas board, 10×12 inches.  It is not wonky, just how my camera takes photos!  Perspective is not it’s thing. Canvas board is canvas glued to heavy cardboard with gesso on top to make it water proof.

10 Reasons why I like Canvas Board

  1. It retains the look and feel of canvas when painting.  I like the texture of canvas and how when you drag your brush it skims over the canvas allowing some of the color underneath to show.
  2. Unlike stretched canvas frames, canvas board is sturdy, like a board.  There is no bounce to it.  This makes it perfect for adding pastes as they won’t crack as the substrate is not really flexible.  This is also great for collage work.
  3. They are inexpensive.  I do not see why people need to spend a shedload of money on art supplies if they want to take up painting.  As with decorating your home, you need to know where to spend your money.  If you are buying an expensive work surface for your kitchen, buy cheap tiles for the back splash.  Once they are up, you won’t be able to tell the difference and you will be happy to have saved some money.  So, spend the money on good quality artist paint and spend less on substrates and brushes.  Also, just because a substrate is cheap, it doesn’t always mean it is bad.  A lot of the time I will add an extra coat of gesso (or 2) onto my substrates to add more texture or to get rid of any flaws.  If I really mess up a painting and can see no way of improving it at all with more paint, I won’t feel bad about throwing it out.
  4. I use them when doing an online class.  Do I really need to say more about that?  Why waste good money on an expensive substrate when you are not sure about what you are going to do and how it will turn out?  I made that mistake with some cradled wood panels, not to be repeated.  Luckily I was able to turn things around.
  5. They fit perfectly into picture frames.  I purchase inexpensive black or white frames, pop out the mount (I use them for other things) and the glass and then pop in the canvas board.  Canvas boards to not need to be framed behind glass and when you remove the glass and mount you make space for the board.  Viola!  I tend to buy 10×12 inch canvas boards as they are a good size for landscape and portrait style painting.  Even the 5×7 inch canvas boards fit nicely into a 5×7 inch photo frame.  With the variety of inexpensive frames on the market, it is easy to have something that you can hang up straight away.IMG_4397
  6. This size is easy to ship.  You can even ship with the frame as they are relatively small and you don’t have to worry about glass breaking during the shipping process.  This also keeps the costs down on postage and means your customer has something ready to hang.
  7. They are great for trying out new ideas.  I don’t sketch.  I love the idea of having a sketchbook, but I don’t do it.  It’s not my thing.  The ideas are in my head until they come out onto the substrate with the paint.  Its more of a feeling for me especially if I am painting an abstract.  If I like how something turns out, I can always go bigger on a different substrate.  Interestingly, the paint moves differently when painting on canvas or cradled board so you will never be able to replicate a painting exactly.  In both sets of paintings below the one on the left is canvas board 10×12 inches and the one on the right is 24 x17inches stretched canvas.


    The feel of the brush on the stretched canvas is so different than on the canvas board, but I had a starting point and was able to work organically.  There is also more texture on the stretched canvas.  I can also use what I like from the smaller painting and disregard or change things I wasn’t crazy about.  In the photo on the lower right, I added paste with beads in some parts for more texture.

  8. Taking into account the reasons above, you can easily create a series that won’t break the bank while trying new things.
  9. You can use most any type of media on canvas panels and they are great for mixed media work.
  10. I just learned that you can use them for water color painting!  You just need to get some water color ground to prep them first!  Some more on that once I’ve tried it out!

Triptych in Blue – Framed

Well, I think winter is finally upon us here in the UK.  Though tell that to some of the plants.  My pelargoniums are still blooming, so are the strawberries and the spring jasmine.  The wild blackberries are getting a second wind of white flowers too!  However, it is cold and wet.  That means dull, grey days.  Which makes it very bad for taking photos of paintings!  But hey ho, here is a little something to brighten your day.
IMG_4466Triptych in blue

FullSizeRender (7)Triptych in Blue – Framed

Could I get a decent photo?  Heck no!  I varnished and had them framed.  The varnish is glossy which gave this painting a glare.  Glare on a wet and rainy day?  They look really nice in person!  These little beauties are all wrapped up ready to be sent to their new home in San Francisco.  They are a present to my son.  His girlfriend really liked them.

Ideally, I would have liked them in a floating frame, but one of the pieces has a wonky top which wouldn’t make that work.  Though I am quite pleased by how these turned out and all ready for my son to hang.  He should get them by Christmas. 🙂