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Preview: Paint at Play - Lost in Reason

Paint at Play - Lost in Reason

This world is a wonderful and fearful place: read the directions carefully before use.

Updated: 2017-12-19T06:26:28.976-06:00




I am getting ready to put up some sketches soon. After a year on sabbatical, I am indeed itching to paint. I really enjoyed the combination of woodwork and painting of my last piece, and intend to expand on this idea in my new work.

Details are still tentative, but I have been thinking much on the concept of three days lately and want top explore it further. Three days are the difference between Jesus as Teacher and Jesus as Christ. If he had not risen in three days, he would have not have defeated death, and thus defeated sin.

Hope and Patience


Here is the completed work, "Hope and Patience." Please forgive me, but this work has been completed for some time now.
My time has been divided between family, school, and work, leaving little extra for art. Fortunately, much of this has been reduced to a steady stream, so I am hoping to have more time to commit to creating art.

Oddly enough, art is the one thing that offers me some peace when time is tight. This work is no exception.

I hope you enjoy it.

Lighten up


(image) I decided what was bothering me about the work. The background for the final panel was too dark, and as a result it didn't seem to fit in with the remaining three. I went back and lightened the sky starting with the bottom left corner. Much better...

I also added a light green glaze to the panels. The result is satisfactory, so I will likely continue to add some light washed to contrast the red in the monochromatic areas.

So what now?


I am feeling a little lost as I work to complete this work. The panels could be unified with some light glazing, but may look better using different colors on each. We will see...

A little life


One by one, the leaves are in. As I look at this panel by itself, it seems a little bland. Perhaps it is because I have been looking at the blank branches so long; I was hoping for something more exciting.

Fortunately, I am not finished yet. I need to think some more on this panel while I look to complete the entire work.

Back to work


Now that classes are back under control, I had the opportunity to get some painting done. Here are the beginnings of the fourth panel.


Although it is only twigs and sky at the moment, the leaves will come in soon. The color should provide a nice contrast to the monochromatic panels that surround it.

It is nice to be back.

Only 24


A month has gone by without the opportunity to paint. The painting itself sits in the corner of my living room, waiting for me to return. Soon.

As work and school require more and more time, I have a choice between painting and family. My lonely painting is a pleasant reminder of my choice. When things temper down some, I will get back to work.

Window: adding branches


I added in darkened branches to create some interesting movement in the monochromatic panels. My hope is to provide texture without distracting from the final panel.
I am still debating on the color palette for the final section. I want some color to add focus, but too much may ruin the work. Perhaps subtle is best.

Window: test run


After working a little more on the monochromatic panels, I gave the work a test-run in the window frame to see how the composition is coming together:
Although I initially intended the panels to be simplistic in form, I may add some darker branches to add interest. The addition should help build greater contrast with the final full-color panel.

Window: building the ground


A little more work on the piece:
It is progressing nicely for the amount of time I have to devote to painting right now. Sometimes I am embarrassed by the slow nature of my painting, but find myself pleasantly reminded of the gift provided me to paint at all. Combining family, work and school can prevent much of the non-essentials from occurring at all.

Thankfully, I am blessed with small moments to enjoy creating visual worship to my Lord.

Window on patience: starting the panels


After placing in a quick sketch to get me started, I have begun the process of painting in the monochromatic panels.
Sometimes it is more difficult to paint without additional colors as light value is the only thing that separates sections of composition. It helps me consider light and shadow, as it is all I have. The wood seen here is the same width as the frame, to allow proper alignment of each panel when mounted.

Building a window


The support is finished. I used red oak to build the frame and finished it with a Dark Bombay stain. After building my supports primarily with pine, It was surprising how fun satisfying it is to work with quality hardwood.

(image) (image) (image) (image) (image) (image)

The final photo shows the completed frame holding the prepared panels. I used multiple coats of a lightly tinted gesso to begin the monochromatic imagery that will follow.


A window on Romans 12


Having started the wood support for the work, I have decided upon an idea for the panels. I am looking toward Romans 12:12.
The concept is patience, and the painting will have four panels. Three of these will be in a monochromatic scheme, showing a tree in decline. The fourth panel (in the upper right) will be done in vibrant colors and will have foliage and the start of new fruit. Combined with the wood window frame, it should be quite interesting.

Feeling Dry


After some initial planning, the sketch for the wood panel-support is ready:
I considered creating more of a window frame appearance, but chose a simpler path as it would allow me to try some different configurations in the future. The wood strips will be about 2" wide, with an overall depth of about 3".

I have been thinking some about what to fill in the panels and find myself torn between four separate images or a single unified work. Unfortunately, with work and school starting back up, I feel a little dry in the creativity department.



A little rest and a new idea...

After the last series based on a stained-glass approach, I needed to take a breath to generate some new ideas. Although I enjoy refining successful ideas further in new works, it is important to also take some time to explore new paths.

I have an interesting (at least to me) concept that I intend to sketch out this week. It is a culmination of sorts in that it requires a multi-panel approach and the mimicking of glass. Further than that it is too early to tell. What is truly interesting to me right now is the supporting structure for the panels themselves. I intend to build a frame from wood to hold the individual panels, just as a glazed window. I think the combination of tactile sculpture with paint may be fun.

We will see.



(Shameless plug warning)

I have updated some of my other pages with some recent work.

My art process pages:
If you want to see some recent work, take a look here.

Some available art:
For those of you who are seeking some original artwork, or would like a print, I have added two more works to the list.

Unfortunately, Dividing Soul And Spirit has found a home. (It helps the art budget though). 8.5x11" prints are available of anything on these pages.

Repair, renew


The restoration work to repair the damage to Made New was successful, and the painting has been successfully delivered.
I love the look of this thick glazing technique, but need to experiment some with packing and crating methods to prevent damage in the future. Unfortunately, the thick glaze remains soft whereas most work dries more completely. I think the is worth the trouble.

Shipping Damage


After all of my careful work on Made New, a mistake on my part has led to some severe damage in shipping. Apparently, the new glazing technique will require a new crating procedure, as the packing material stuck to the surface of the work. The result is devastating:

(image) (image)

I received the painting back today, and started work on restoring the surface. The white areas are actually the remainder of shipping material that has adhered itself to the top coat of glaze. Fortunately, I use a few top coats of glaze that can be removed; allowing for a resurface without ill effect. In retrospect, I should have known better when making the crate for shipping. Brad, The Broken Messenger has been very gracious, considering the headache it has been for him.

(image) (image)

These shots show the surface after dissolving the packing material from the surface. Little marks still remain in the top glaze, but should be removed when I strip the top coat.

Completed work on Made New


After many more layers of glazing and a final touch, the work is finished:
To help promote a glass-like finish on the final work, I had started with a finely sanded canvas. In my textured work, the rough tooth of primed raw canvas is great, but for a smooth final surface, I find it best to remove the tiny irregularities before starting work with paint.

As this work was drawing to a close, I felt as though something was missing. I was really pleased with the final surface of the colored sections after glazing, but the lines seemed to lack interest. To build a stronger impression of stained glass, the lines needed some mild texture, and a slight reduction in gloss. I decided to go back over the areas with a mixture of heavy gel medium and a dark metallic shade. I used the mixture all around the edges of the canvas as well, which gives the impression of a full support for the work.
The photo really does not do justice to the final result, but the additional detail is impressive.

Made New: making glass


The lines are complete allowing the glazing to begin.
I have washed in a few overall layers to unify the composition, and started working on the shadows and highlights. As the glazes build, the colors become much more vibrant, allowing light to penetrate and reflect through the individual layers of color.

For this work, I am using a more loose glazing process that involves adding some directional strokes within the washes to provide a visual texture of stained glass. They cannot be seen from a short distance, but provide some interest at the work is viewed closer.
With about seven layers done overall, the process is still just beginning.

Made New: delineated


With the underpainting complete, I have moved on to adding the lines into the painting:
Other than the final glazing layers, little else can so dramatically change the feel of a piece. I enjoy this part as it brings about a transformation from a loose collection of colors swatches to a more distinct composition.

Made New: in the background


I have the majority of the background filled in, with only a few places left.
I am really enjoying the progress of this work, but am interested to see how the lines will shape the image.

Made New: taking shape


I have done a little more work on this piece; finishing the underpainting for the heart and working on building the background:
(image) (image)
I now need to consider the colors I intend to use for the pieces of shed heart. I am thinking a light pale blue that would take on the unifying glazes well. So far I am pleased with the process, but like the other works in this series, the darkened lines will transform the final result.

Made New: from the inside


A simple beginning:
I am trying to leave the underpainting light to help give the glazes a little more vibrancy.
(image) (image)

I, Pharisee


I am finishing up preparing a canvas this weekend for a new work. The concept is greatly interesting to me, as it centers around the work of a fellow Christian blogger, the Broken Messenger. For those that do not already know him, I would recommend a visit to his blog. He has encouraged me think on numerous occasions (here is just a few, and another).
You may wonder the title of this post, but it comes directly from his own description of self. The concept represents the peeling away of our old self to be made new; an idea that is very close to my own heart. I look forward to beginning soon.