Sunday, January 30, 2011

Cultivating Change

I'm back in the studio working on several large oil canvases. I'm starting with very vibrant, chromatic under-paintings similar to using watercolor or fluid acrylics. I have lots of energy despite a nasty cold. Go figure!

While painting this morning I was thinking about my working method and how it has shifted, evolved, changed over time. I think that change has served the work. Even little things like using better paint, a variety of kinds of brushes, different surfaces has all pushed the work. I think we all have these ideas about the how the work should be done and with what tools, but cultivating a capacity for change is important, maybe even essential to success as an artist.

I used to think that you could only use bristol brushes with oil. Now I use all kinds of brushes; whatever does the job including house brushes and synthetic brushes. I also had the idea that since I was doing large canvases, that using less expensive large tubes of paint would be more economical, when in reality good paint has more chroma and goes further. I've also decided to wear gloves while working in both oil and pastel. I have done this only sporadically. So always questioning my methods and working habits to see if I can knock on another door is a good thing.

I'm enjoying mixing paint  and using brushes after spending the last two months exclusively on pastel.

On an entirely different note, today my mom brought me a Smart Wool undershirt that is kind of like an UnderArmor. It's thin and lightweight; perfect for keeping warm in the studio. What a thoughtful gift!! My mom is the greatest! She knows I'm always struggling to keep warm while I'm working this time of year. Thanks Mom!!!


SamArtDog said...

Great moms bearing Smart Wool help great artists breathe fire. You warm us all.

Jana said...

Your oil underpainting is positively luscious! Your Smart Wool undershirt sounds luscious too---off to do a google search...