Monday, September 29, 2014

Painting in Oil - a bit of a rant

first, quick strokes of acrylic under painting
ready to start painting in oil
The Artist #1
After 14 years of painting almost entirely in encaustic, I joyfully am now painting the new series, "The Artist" in oil over acrylic. I am NOT an encasutic artist. I am an artist.

I used and taught almost every technique in encasutic over the last 10 years and it was fun, but more and more I am seeing mediocore or bad encasutic painting posted on Face Book -on many different encaustic pages,  some that remind me of grade school finger painting, that are loved by many. To me it is all about the lovely surface of encasutic and has nothing to do with the fundamentals of painting. It is like making a meaningless painting and pouring resin over it. The surface fools the eye into thinking some thought went into the creation.

Particularly, now that I am in the last chapter of my life, I want to make real paintings. So I am painting figuratively once again; a subject that I understand and making large paintings in oil. Yes, I could use use encaustic, but why?

I still have my complete setup for teaching encasutic and will teach again, if students are interested in something besides surface.

Here is the process of my first painting in the series. It is 80 cm x 100 cm

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Mexico City Adventure

For a complete change of pace, my daughter  Cynthia and I went to my favorite city ; Mexico City, for 3 days. We needed a break for our routine and certainly were inspired by the art and the food and the sophistication of the people in Colonia Roma where we stayed.

I have been getting tired of encaustic. To me, it has the flavor of cult-like devotion and many paintings that I see posted on Face Book on the encaustic sites, are from "new" artists who are in love with the  surface technique, and have no interest or ability to create a painting with a reason for being, including composition or the fundamentals of painting.

We went to 3 museums, but the one that inspired and excited us was the Museo Tamayo. The show was perfectly curated. There was also the 19th biennial show that featured young artists. I was thrilled that there were many beautiful executed, technically beautiful figurative paintings.

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Not everything was figurative


Monday, September 15, 2014

I Want to Paint Like This

Oh, wait! I did paint like this over 40 years ago. Those are my paintings. I wonder if I can loosen up and create spontanious work like this again? Perhaps if I walk away from encaustic for a while I can regress...

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Life and Death of a Painting

I photograph almost all of my work. I find that it is a good way of removing myself and seeing with a non-attached eye; then I can see the weak spots and make corrections. In the case of this painting, for some reason it never satisfied me and I kept reworking it.
 It became a pair of Hungarian dancers, that never quite worked because of the foreshortening. After about a year, I put the torch to it to wipe it off the face of the earth, only to find that the many heavy layers and the collage that was under all that wax was becoming something interesting. I sprayed water into the hot encaustic, added some charcoal for even more texture and scraped a lot .It became the final incarnation of the painting on the bottom of the page. It now hangs in the dining room
It doesn't look that bad to me now