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Sunday, September 27, 2009

Fire Starter Glazing

As with previous stages of this painting I'm including the last Fire Starter painting along with the very latest version complete with a glazing of sepia (water soluble oil paint). For the most part I am happy with the results. For one thing, the sepia did accomplish what I set out to do -- to give the painting an antique look. By that I mean the visual impression that the painting may have been done several years ago, perhaps as long as a hundred or so years. I don't think that the glaze does much to improve the painting but that was not my intention. Some may even say this process has perhaps hurt the final product. I actually think the technique adds something positive to the Fire Starter, but that is my opinion. What do you think?
Now here are the before and after images:

The actual glazing process provided some challenges and surprises. I was actually learning how to do it by trying different consistencies of paint and drying times. Here are some things I learned:

1) I started by laying a thin coat of the sepia on the painting, waiting a minute of two and then wiping most of the paint off. I did not want the glaze too dark, especially the Fire Starter.

2) I not only added water to the paint but also I added a mixture of drying medium and blending medium, which tended to make the glaze very wet when applied. It was very easy to add too much water when I was trying to thin the glaze down. If the glaze got too thin (watery) I had to sometimes redo a second coat after the first one dried a couple of minutes.

3) Using a heavier consistency of paint worked fine with the Fire Starter but not as well with the other two studies, “The City of Canals” and “The Castle Above Vaduz,” both of which are much lighter and more colorful than the Fire Starter. I used a much thinner (more watery) glaze on these two studies. I think the thinner glaze worked better.

4) The thinner glaze was harder to control as I tried to apply even layers of sepia. The wet brush tended to puddle at the edges of my strokes. I addressed the problem by gently dabbing the excess paint with a paper towel.

I will share the other two glazed studies in separate blogs.



1 comment:

  1. Joe, this is beautiful, I am also wondering what he is thinking…there is a story there; an indescribable loneliness resonates from his posture seen clearly by the glow of the fire.

    In addition, you have given your viewers a excellent description of your process with this painting.