The Painting Party

Richeson, a manufacturer of art supplies, donated two dozen 5″x7″ gesso’d panels to our art group for a painting event.  They were also so kind as to donate two oil paint sets – one with 12 colors and the other with 6 – as prizes that we could use to liven up the party. 

So, we got together for a three hour session and each of us painted our own subjects on the panels.  This is mine.

I was inspired by the current issue of “Somerset Studio” magazine which is a magazine for mixed media artists.  I greatly admire many of the pieces featured in that magazine.  Although I often find the drawing skills somewhat lacking, the free use of color and often abundant inclusion of decorative elements appeal to me.  And it seemed like the freer approach of this style would be “good for me.”

I found that I really enjoyed it.  The extemporaneous drawing with a brush was a bit intimidating, but nothing ventured, nothing gained.

My first step was to texture the board with hard molding paste and fiber paste.  In a way this seemed like a shame since the boards have such a beautiful finish to them, but I wanted to work with texture.  I thought that these pastes would dry faster than they did and I inadvertently moved them a bit with my brush when I applied the first layer of paint.  So in the future, I would prepare a few boards at one time and let them dry overnight before I began painting.

I was excited to find that once the molding paste formed a skin, I could stamp into it with rubber stamps.   I stamped “mouse” with my alphabet rubber stamps, then couldn’t resist smearing burnt umber over it to bring it out.

But my favorite part was the final part – adding the decorative dots and squiggles – perhaps a bit like “zentangles” (which I stubbornly resist on the grounds that they are much ado about nothing).

I will do more of these.


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