Saturday, March 29, 2014


These are two 8 x 10 inch paintings on stretched canvas, that I did this week.

I'm going for grunge at the moment, facilitated in large part by the Lyra graphite crayons I've recently begun using.  I'm liking them a lot.  I have two that are water soluble and two that aren't, and to be honest I can't tell the difference.  The non water-soluble ones actually seem to dissolve better than the ones that are meant to.  Whatever.

I've also used graphite pencil and Neocolor I wax crayons.  The Neocolor IIs are water soluble but the Neocolor Is are not.  I love that elementary look you get with crayon and pencil.

The greenish piece had a few collage elements adhered to the canvas before I began painting.
The second piece began as a grungy background on which I decided to try a few other things.  I dripped paint horizontally and vertically, with Golden High Flow acrylic paint (tiny samples provided by Golden), with Liquitex acrylic ink, and with Bombay India ink.

I was testing different media to see which dripped best for my taste.  Frankly, I liked the High Flow the least, it had quite a bit more viscosity than I imagined it would, thicker than ink.  I'd definitely thin it with a bit of water the next time.

At any rate, after letting the drips dry I painted over them, then enhanced the drip lines with graphite crayon and smeared that.

In their original, simpler incarnations, I liked both of these pieces.  But I decided I needed to push them further.  My modus operandi is to want to be finished with things quickly.  I've seen this mechanism at work in many areas of my life, not just art.  It's about my being uncomfortable with uncertainty, with open-endedness, and with my seeking quick resolution and completion, and wanting to be done with something so I can say "I did it" and move on.  It's also about not wanting to "ruin" things, and therefore not trusting myself to go farther.  Just putting this situation into words is bringing up a lot of stuff for me.

Anyhow, I've concluded that when I have the feeling that a painting is just fine and dandy the way it is, early on, that that's my clue to take a step back and then push the piece farther forward.  I've also decided that it will be a far better strategy for me to work in series than on individual pieces.  Two or more pieces using some of the same elements will flesh techniques out better than doing piecemeal work.


Jacki Long said...

Very cool!
I too like working on more than one at a time. It seems to me that one feds the other?
Nice work, as usual, Connie!

john said...

I love my water soluble Lyra graphite pencil. Try using your paintbrush with a bit of water after you use the Lyra. I love the results. You are having a great time exploring with your new tools. :-)

Maggi said...

I really like the texture on these. I can recommend working in a series!

jackie said...

Its always good to put things aside for awhile; I usually find they are not as good as I thought in my first burst of excitement, but sometimes the almost discarded gets a new life.

Els said...

love the texture on your paintings Connie !

Corrine at said...

Grunge and greens, nice. xox