Mountain and Cloud 23.4.09 Oil on mahogany on MDF 105x140mm
Mt Taranaki from my studio window. I like trying different surfaces for paintings and this one was done on a piece of mahogany veneer that I laminated onto the MDF board and then gessoed in the usual way. It's nice painting on wood and I wanted to keep the subtle grain of the wood, so this encouraged me to use thinner paint and softer brushes. This subtlety is of course completely lost in the pixels of cyberspace.
I was rummaging through my collection of plastic toys for something else when I found the pig, and the very next thing I laid my fingers on was the fake pearl. It's strange how these kinds of synchronistic things happen. The pearl was easy to paint. The pig was a little trickier.
Almonds are Mars Orange. I've just got a particularly nice Mars Orange from Old Holland paints. Old Holland is very expensive but it's one of the few artist paint manufacturers who actually still grind the pigment in linseed oil. Most makers now use safflower oil which is cheaper and because it's less yellow the paint looks brighter in the tube. Unfortunately, it does not produce the same kind of tough elastic film that traditional linseed oil makes, and is a bad drier. Paint layers applied over the top of older layers will crack with safflower and I wonder how many of today's paintings will still be around in a hundred years time.
Just for entertainment purposes I have listed this one as a $1 reserve auction on NZTradeMe. I'm going to sell a painting if it kills me.
Super Gum Oil on Berger Canvas 2748 mounted on MDF
I found this stick of bubblegum on my morning walk. A school group had recently passed by. I was never allowed bubble gum as a child. I also found it oddly reminisent of the way cannabis reefers were twisted at the ends "back in the day". Perhaps they still are, though I wouldn't know. It was painted on a sample scrap of canvas. Normally I would trim it to the shape and size I required before starting the painting, but today for some reason I didn't. Perhaps it suits the feelings I have for the subject. There is also that whole connotation of bubblegum being cheap and nasty, typifying the "throw away" culture I have been brought up in. To be perfectly honest, I'm kind of feeling like I'm slumming it a bit, painting these small paintings and trying to hock them off on a web blog. So many others are doing it now, and I look around and see so much mediocrity and unoriginality. Perhaps it's time for me to make a fresh start with another project.
I've had a few people on my mailing list complaining that they can't see the images, and only get a red X. This is most probably caused by the default settings of Outlook Express not allowing images. To fix this, go to Tools, then Options, and Security and uncheck the box which says "Block images" etc.