Thursday, January 2, 2014

30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge: Number One

Well, here is Number One of my 30 paintings I signed up to paint this January.  I think the biggest challenge with this is photographing and uploading and from there, where do I post it?  I only have 4 Facebook pages and website and here, do I put it in all places?  Or just one and share all over the place?  Do I write some insightful renderings on this one day sketch?...and if I do, where?  Facebook is awfully busy these days, I'm not sure if anyone has time to read insightful renderings, so this will have to do I think.

How do you do a painting in one day, and that means the time you take to paint in one day, if I took 24 hours I could fuss more.  Reality of this limited time to paint is self discipline.  I told myself that no matter what I had arrived at after two hours, that was IT!  If I was not totally content with the production, too bad, that's it.  Not an easy thing to do when you are a bit of a fussy perfectionist (only in painting) like me, not easy at all.  So I made sure to choose an easy subject, a photograph that did a lot of the work for me first, my photo, but still pretty straight forward.  I decided to limit my palette, Prussian Blue, Indian Yellow, Alizarin Crimson and Burnt Sienna.  No white.  These pigments are all transparent, except for Sienna that is a bit granular and not-so-much transparent.  I wanted a quick and loose feel, so I used lots of Odourless Turps to thin the paint in order to use the white of the canvas for my white.  It's kind of like a watercolour process, only easier, the oils don't dry and I can push them around all day long if I want.  I learned this method back in the 80s when I took private lessons with Anthony Thorn.  The course was in glazing, though, we'd add lots of thick impasto to the loose sketch like this, then let that dry and the glaze again, and again, and again.  No one day masterpieces in that class, well, not for me anyways.

Okay, I did one painting, and for those who know my in social sites, doing one and posting it is a big deal.  Like I said, the work is the other stuff, the self discipline, the having no time to fuss and convince myself it sucks and I should sell my paints and brushes, nope..keep going.  I look at this image and see lots of areas that need more defining, like that pathetic looking lace cloth under the vase, oh well...there's enough perfect lace clothes in the art world, mine can remain looking like a dirty rag from a mechanic's workshop, I really don't have the time or inclination to paint lace, been there, done that.

Now, I must plan Number 2.......


  1. It is a super painting. I think the challenge of 30 paintings in 30 days is about way more than what gets produced. It gets us out of heads instead of out our minds. You really stated what this challenge is all about for you AND you ended up with a great painting as well.

    1. Thanks, Chris, I so agree, the timing of this is perfect, such an emotional time of year on so many levels, jumping into our other passionate world under pressure rules is making me look at my bad habits, ambitions, sense of self, a whole buncha things I ponder while at my computer, maybe I'll end up actually sane by February :) but I doubt it.

  2. I think it is a great painting and I didn't need to know it was lace under the vase, what happened worked! You are of course too hard on yourself like most of us! Maybe this whole challenge will help us with that??