While the last work in progress I posted still seems to be...er...in progress I offer you this new WIP that seems to be moving along a little more easily. I have decided to return to the nontoxic (or less toxic, any way) painting process that I was doing while I was pregnant. Essentially this process was to paint without solvents and instead to thin the paint and clean my brushes with walnut oil.
What was formerly a struggle to me using this method now seems to be working to my advantage. Working with the walnut oil keeps my paintings wetter longer. This is a good thing for me now, as I am only able to get dedicated painting time for about 3 half-days a week. So I can now return to my painting in a more malleable state without having to feel like I need to rework everything in order to open it back up again (which is what kept happening with the Venice WIP).
I also decided to try working with M. Graham paints again, which I had tried (unsuccessfully) to use en plein air some time ago. Initially I found them rather more fluid than I was accustomed to, particualrly for juicy plein air work that I need to have set up rather quickly. It was also a hot summer day when I last tried to use them, and what I ended up with at that time was a mushy, gooey mess. But, again, what seemed like a liability is now working to my advantage, and I am really enjoying these paints now, for the precise reason that they are more fluid and very buttery.
For this painting I am using a single primary palette of red yellow and blue plus white. For my red I've chosen Quinacridone Rose; my yellow is Indian Yellow, and the blue is my old friend Ultramarine. I am, of course, also using white, which is my favorite white and what I have on hand, madeÂ by Classic Artist Oils. It is buttery, but has a little more body to it and blends nicely with the more fluid colors. This is a really good palette, I am finding, for sunset paintings, as the colors are both rich and transparent and lend themselves to that luminous quality I'm after. And since at sunset everything seems to take on the color of the sky, using a limited palette creates a nice unity in the painting.
These pictures show the progression of my 24x30 inch canvas so far. If all goes well, I should be able to finish this piece today for a posting of the final product later in the week. That is, if I can get myself off of this computer!