Friday, February 1, 2008

"It Holds Treasure," 6x8 and 3x4 but not ready for sale

Early last month I posted some studies I did on gessoed cardboard (not corrugated) taped to cardboard sheets (corrugated). I was aiming at doing quick, loose work, and didn't want fear of wasting material to enter into the formula. But the interesting thing was, when I photographed the studies, I kind of liked the way they looked, taped to the cardboard. I did a 3x4 inch and a 4.5x6 inch before doing the final one.

I wondered what that would look like if it was official; i.e., eventually on canvas. So I taped a large piece of canvas to a board and drew two rectangles with enough room around them so I can stretch them later if I like. Again I did a small painting (3x4") and a larger one (6x8"). Showing the entire board isn't that useful, since there's a lot of bare canvas, but I did take pictures of each showing it with the border. Here's the 6x8":

And here's the 3x4":

I'm not sure these have that nice raw sense of the earlier paintings, but it was an interesting experiment. Now I just have to get some stretchers and see how much white I want around the edge. Do I want to try painting a picture of a square of canvas, picture in process, taped to a piece of cardboard? I don't know. Maybe.

By the way, the book is The Life of the Bee by Maurice Maeterlinck, illustrated by Edward Detmold, an amazing artist who specialized in nature. More here.


  1. interesting experiment. The white edge might give the effect of a liner between the frame and painting.
    I really like the look of a painting that has been started as an underpainting in one color, like burnt sienna, and then only key elements brought to a finished state in full color.

    Love your subject matter. Especially the book and acorns.

  2. Hi Silvina. We actually just went out and bought a table saw because my husband is a guy and likes power tools, and also because of this and the next couple of paintings. They're on unstretched canvas, and I want to try cropping them afterwards (watercolorists get to do this). I could then either mount them on stretchers or adhere them to a sheet of masonite. I'm having great fun putting down a splash of color, then working the painting over it. Richard Schmid is a master of this.