Tuesday, July 4, 2017

New Work: Green Dream, oil on panel, 24 x 24 inches

Green Dream, oil on panel, 24 x 24 inches  $2450 framed

Some years ago, I purchased a number of wood panels. The idea was to experiment with more abstracted ideas. As experiments go, some worked out nicely and the less successful ones were stacked in dark corners, waiting for another day and better ideas.

A couple of months ago I pulled the worst out of the stack and painted over it quickly, using less detail but with the same, experimental idea in mind. It was a horizontal band of trees, unbroken from left to right. At least I changed things but still wasn't very compelling. A poor start is not what I needed.

So back in the corner it went, but visible to me every day now. It was a reminder to do better and to get there by any means possible.

Thinking back to my original plan with these panels, I had planned on using whatever oils were on the palette at the end of the day to make some small scale, interesting starts. Instead of throwing the paints out, they could be applied to the panels without a formal plan, creating interesting challenges to work out later.

It was the end of the painting session last week and I had just added a bit of Oriental Green to a large canvas. Looking across the studio, that 24 x 24 panel was calling out for something new and this powerful green might be just the thing.

Bring the panel to the easel, I took the green and quickly put in the dark line of trees, fading it out as it moved downward to the right. It made me smile because I was reminded of the chef on the cooking shows, "Boom." That's more like it!

At the end of a painting session days later, another unplanned move resulted. I was clearing the palette for the day when I noticed I had a good bit of white and yellow left. Putting the panel back to  the easel, I started putting in the right row of trees with that yellow and white.

The light color was picking up a bit of the almost-dry green from the days before and giving the yellow-white an other-worldly glow in places. I decided to play it smart and stopped for the day.

The original painting still showed through in the sky and foreground areas, so I painted over them but not completely, trying out various color ideas. All of the colors experimented with are visible, but to various degrees and it adds a nice complexity. In the sky a pale, acid green was used but it struck the wrong note. However it was very useful as an interesting remnant when overpainted wth the lavender tones. Finally, the oil was finished after a long journey of about 2 years.

That felt good. 

I took a little time to go back over the process, took a break and came back to the studio with a pre-stretched 48 x 48 canvas. On to the palette I squeezed out large amounts of Oriental Green and Perylene Black (a green-black), then started work on the bigger version. 

That felt really good.

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