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painting's new paladin

<< Sep 20, 2005 @ 22:21 >>

I've always loved painting. When I was little I used to love painting with those Tempura paints or whatever. You know, that cheap stuff that would come in the like 6 tubs connected in a line. (I remember going up to Door County with Andrea and painting honeysuckles.) I'm a strong believer than limitation is the mother of creativity, and something about the finitivity or finite-ness(?) of paint is the embodiment of that. You've only got so much paint, and then it's gone. I've always felt like that because, unlike the bottomless bucket of crayons, Mom wouldn't supply paint willy-nilly. Cheap paint apparently wasn't economical, and let me tell you, real paint is about 100 times more expensive than gasoline. And gas ain't cheap. Way to go Bush. I was hoping the Iraq coup would have at least helped me at the pump. Uhhhhhhhhhh...

So, I needed to fill the big white wall above my couch. The monster and I had decided at some point that a big black canvas hung over the bright red couch could be satisfying. I (probably overstepping myself) decided to instead paint part of the canvas the same flat red as the couch, and have shiny, texturous black creep down over the red. This would effectively kill two birds with one stone in my grand bottom-up painting scheme. The blank, flat (as in "not-bumpy" in this use) canvas, and the textured canvas.

Have I ever mentioned my bottom-up paint plan on my blog? I don't know that I have. A cursory google search reveals nothing. Anyway, I want to start with painting the simplest thing possible – a solid coloured canvas – and slowly move my way up with texture, shape, and line... and when I'm 90 I'll be better than the old masters! Right? Right.

So, Blick had canvases half-off, so I picked up my 30" x 40" to end my procrastination. No time like the present... when the present has a sale going on. I also picked up these handy little dirt cheap 5"x7" Gesso'ed (to use the lingo) test-canvases, on which I was practising tonight. I went with an acrylic red because I needed something flat that would lie flat on the canvas... something that wouldn't hold a texture. For black, I went with oil since I needed lots of texture. A high viscosity.

OILS ARE AMAZING! They are so different to work with than the cheap paint of my childhood. You can paint wet-on-wet without getting a soggy shit-brown mess. You can sculpt it like clay with a painting knife (how I'm accomplishing my texture for the final piece.) I'm absolutely enamoured with paint. I can totally channel thousands of years of history when I do it. Imagining Monet splorting big splots of paint [re-read that] onto his massive canvases comes easily. Suddenly I want to read art history, or at least the history of artists. Seriously... if I had all the oils I wanted as a child, I think I'd have been an artist for a living.

To be fair though, you probably don't want your 8-year-old using oils when you do a little research and discover that the otherwise edible linseed oil has HIGHLY POISONOUS pigments in it. White paints may be lead. Cadmium causes cancer if you breathe it too much. Then there's arsenic. With the amount of paint I'm going to need to use on this canvas (this is going to be a long and expensive process!), I'm damn lucky my ivory black is just pigmented with amorphous carbon. No big deal. Interest fact though, the tube says "Amorphous Carbon Produced by Charred Animal Bones." That totally makes the evil theme legit. When I'm done, somebody will have to buy me a little brush to sign with.

When I shook her hand, I really shook a glove.

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September 27, 2005 @ 19:05:27

jem.pngpamelaNeko (#1001)

Wow! I want to see it. You need to post some pics.

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