18 x 14 x 1.5", acrylic and mixed media on stretched canvas
I was fortunate enough at my workshop last weekend to create not one, but two paintings I'm pretty happy with. This is one of them, and it came about kind of by surprise. You see, I often paint in three steps: Step 1.) Apply the texture material. Step 2.) Add the foundation paint layer (this is usually a tremendous mess, lots of free form color applied any way I feel like). Step 3.) Take the tremendous mess and simplify it. I have to say, Step 3 can be difficult; Step 2 can result in wonderful passages where colors run into each other or trickle around the texture or whatever. But it's usually too busy. So in Step 3 I have to paint over parts of it, which can be heart breaking.
This one was a surprise because, at the end of Step 2, I didn't think it needed a lot of work. I figured it should need work, but I wasn't sure what to do to it. Eventually I did go in with some gold and pick out some highlights. And I had to go home that night and create another Step 2 painting for a demo the next day.
I have to say, though, that Step 1 and Step 2 are enormously liberating. You kind of put your logical mind on hold—well, after choosing your palette—and you enter the moment and just go on impulse. I should do something about that...