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Work in Progress Update

May 29, 2009

This is today’s state of the painting with built-up light molding paste with color applied. The wet color has dried and now there is another coat of clear gel over it.
WIP 0529

Again, here is how it looked yesterday:

Since the light molding paste is absorbent when dry, the very wet color application shown in yesterday’s picture soaked into the surface and also dried. As that happened, the color softened. I love the look from yesterday, with the gloss and the high color saturation. I’d like to have preserved that. Still, I can go over it again with more color and clear gel and saturate the tones more. I think I will, since excess is what I’m going for.

I took all of the big 16″ square paintings with me to our monthly Brava meeting this morning and got a lot of good feedback for how I could proceed with them. They all teased me, because as they were making suggestions, I seemed noncommital and would say “Mmmm-hmmmm.” Actually, I was taking it all in, even if it didn’t seem that way. It’s so much fun to kick ideas around that way. I do find this exchange of feedback invaluable.

It will be interesting to see what else happens with these and with this one in particular.

Note:  After publishing this and reviewing it with the pictures, I’ve decided I want to do as much as possible to approximate the colors in the first version. Stay tuned.

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. sherrill pearson permalink
    May 29, 2009 4:51 pm

    hi martha, i absolutely agree with you about stepping up the colour. i can’t understand how you will be able to do that – being a beginner. so, i’m excited to see how this works.

    sherrill

    • May 30, 2009 5:04 am

      I’m not sure what I’ll do to intensify the color either, Sherrill. I don’t want it too much darker, but any color added will darken it. I know that I want to mix color into some clear gel and apply it on top of the colors that are there. Whether to keep the colors the same (add purple over purple, etc.) or add yellow over red, blue over green, etc., is a question I’m thinking about.

  2. May 29, 2009 9:25 pm

    Wow! Martha they are really nice!
    Love and light
    solange

    • May 30, 2009 5:28 am

      Thank you for visiting and leaving your nice words, Solange. I enjoyed discovering your blog!

  3. May 30, 2009 6:07 am

    What an amazing technique! It opens yet more possibilities for transparent layers, if you like. The flow of paint leaves so much room for coincidence, this is very inspiring to look at. Good idea to intensify the colour; I think the “yesterday’s” version was gorgeous.
    How do we ever know when to stop if we never know if we can improve a piece? Someone said to me once: “I should rip the brush out of your hand to stop you when you’re finished!”

  4. May 30, 2009 6:44 am

    Oh yes, Eva! It’s sometimes a good idea for several to paint together for that very reason.

    I have a friend — who shall remain nameless — whose “finished” works keep changing over time. She is a sculptor (big clue?) who carved a lovable and whimsical little life-sized dog-like creature in wood, and left her with the natural wood color, which was how she remained for several years. Now she is blue with a little bird perched on her head. I loved the first version, but love her still.

  5. May 30, 2009 7:04 am

    Hi Martha, I wonder if you were to mix gloss medium with your paint (wasn’t it acrylic?) – would you get the same effect as when you first applied the paint? It wouldn’t be as saturated but it would have that gloss (maybe). Or would the paste absorb that as well?
    I must say, even though the day 1 is stunning – I like day 2 a bit more.

    • May 30, 2009 8:14 am

      Elisa,, that is my plan. And I want to use paints that are dye based rather than any pigment based colors. Yes, the gloss medium will allow the light to bounce around and through the color and make it pop more.

      Wait till you see today’s version. More intense color, but closer to day 2 than day 1!

      Thank you for that valuable feedback! Keep it coming, folks!

  6. May 30, 2009 1:01 pm

    The absorbancy of the modeling paste absorbs the color. So do something to the modeling paste before sculpting it like adding gloss medium to it. The other way is to coat the modeling paste after it is dry before adding color over it. The gloss medium might make it too slick for the paint to stick to it. Maybe apply gloss medium with an addition of plaster of Paris or powdered marble. Then coat with a mixture – the die based paints mixed with gloss medium.

    • May 30, 2009 3:33 pm

      Thanks, Diane, for all those ideas. The “light molding paste” (Golden) is absorbent so that you can get fun effects with it. But I agree that it sucks up too much of the color the first time around. I’m finding that a second application of color sits on top more, because it has already absorbed a lot and is gradually more impervious to subsequent applications. Gloss medium isn’t a problem. The paint sticks to that just fine. Wait till you see what has happened today! Something really crazy.

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