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Friday, May 18, 2012

Revisiting Old Paintings


"Pears on a Pedestal", pastel on sanded paper, 8 x 10

I am sorting through all my plein air paintings, pastels and every other piece of paper or canvas I've been keeping for the last several years that are not framed or in a gallery.  I keep all of my unframed pastels paintings and sketches in a few large notebooks. I tape the paper onto a sheet of the notebook and cover with a piece of glassine.  It usually works well but I have been carrying these large notebooks with me everywhere for the past few years and some of the paintings are getting smudged.  In addition to the notebooks, I have two large plastic bins of all the oil plein airs that are not framed or should have been scraped off to begin with.  I have been pretty ruthless about sorting out the piles into the fixable and the non-fixable.  There were more non-fixables than I am ready to admit!  The oil panels will be covered with Gamblin Oil Ground which is a pain to do but results in a "like new" surface.  The Wallis paper will be brushed off and reused and the paintings on the homemade paper will be thrown away.  I have a pretty decent sized pile of fixables so it may take a while.  The above painting was done last summer when I was going through a "still life on bright colored fabric" phase (it didn't last long).  I was happy with the pears and the serving piece but I had placed the dish on a very bright green and purplish blue striped cloth.  It was very distracting from the main focal point:  the pears.  I used a few big soft pastels in analogous colors of blue green, blue and a slightly purplish gray blue to lightly cover the stripes.  I think it works much better now.  It has won a reprieve from the circular file . . . for now.

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