I am so excited! I finally get to put oil onto the canvas. I combine a mixture of Raw Sienna, Burnt Sienna with a touch of Titanium White in order to paint my imprimatura or ground. I mixed a lean medium containing 5 parts turpentine to 1 part linseed oil. The imprimatura primes the canvas. This not only gets rid of the stark whiteness, but also gives the real paint something to grab onto. My grisaille painting (black and white monochrome) will be a nice contrast to this almost orange color.
Prior to putting this initial stage of oil paint down, I applied five coats of gesso, sanding between coats. My goal was to make as smooth as surface as possible in order to be able to glaze. The problem I ran into with my previous painting was that the little particles of paint got trapped in the weave of the canvas. This created something like pixeling effect, (little spots). So in honor of the smoothness I was striving for, I went to Pandora.com and entered the song Smooth Operator. Let's just say I enjoy painting!
My Favorite T-Shirt
I was able to persuade my lovely wife to come away from the Sunday paper to snap this picture of me. Of course this was not the easiest thing to do because she did not like taking a picture of me with my "comfortable" T-Shirt. (notice bleach spot on shoulder), but the blue does nicely compliment the color of the canvas, does it not? In the picture I am literally beating the canvas with the soft brush to eliminate as many brush strokes as possible. I'll save the impasto (thick, brush influenced strokes) for the later stages of this painting. My next task will be to transfer my grid drawing onto the canvas using a charcoal method I learned from a man named Bill Martin over on Wet Canvas. Stay tuned!