Saturday, May 15, 2010

More experiments....

So I spent the day typing and cutting up words on tracing paper. And then I quickly painted a piece of canvas paper and carefully put the words onto the wet paint.

I admit that it seemed like a good idea at first but the typewriter letters have this horrible moronic ransom note look to them. The handwritten stuff seems better. But I completely dislike the look of the tracing paper over the painting. The paper is not warping but the edges seem to be peeling up. The paper isn't washing out the underpainting the way I thought it would at all which is really good. I was trying to do this whole paper thing to add interest and to keep my lazy ass from having to paint the words onto the canvas... but now that I'm thinking about it I think I'm going to have to just bite the bullet and paint the words in. I probably will have to thin down ivory black with some linseed oil to get the flow just right. Writing with oil paint is a pain in the ass. I could use a permanent marker and write out the letters over dry paint but that would leave absolutely ZERO room for error and that would just not be good. I guess I could do some experiments with the canvas paper and some rubbing alcohol. I think rubbing alcohol will even remove permanent sharpie marker but I don't know how it will do on dry oil paint. Again... more experiments mean more drying time and more waiting. As Indigo Montoya once said... I hate waiting.

I also dislike the background pastel-like colors. Well I don't dislike it. There's something wrong there. I think there is a fine line between a mildly tinted white and something that belongs in a baby nursery. And right now? I think some of the colors are in that baby nursery area. One of the main problems I think is happening is that some lines are standing out more than others and that's because the paints are of different values than each other. In order for this sort of flat look to work, all of the tinted whites need to be of exactly the same value. Otherwise some lines will be more prominent than others and that is not what I'm looking for.

I hate to say I used to go to the modern art museums and see a striped painting and think, "Yeesh, a four year old could do that..." and now that I'm putting my hand in it? Okay a four year old could not do this. This does require some larger artistic knowledge of value vs color and when dealing with such light colors, it requires an extremely delicate hand. When I glanced quickly at Agnes Martin's work, I saw lightly tinted stripes... I didn't notice that those stripes are of the same value until I experienced this problem and looked again.

I'm wondering if the colored plexiglass samples I bought for my quilting will be of any use here. When doing scrap quilts, you primarily need to be concerned with the overall value of a fabric rather than its predominant color. Have you ever stood under one of those awful orange sodium street lamps? Well the next time you do, notice how the orange light completely washes out any color beneath it. So take a piece of amber plexiglass and look through it. It will have the same effect making it easier for you to evaluate the value of a fabric and ignore the color aspect.

it is possible that these tints will be so light that the plexiglass will not be useful at all. I'll have to see in the morning in the sunlight.

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