Sunday, July 14, 2013

"rust & bone" a work in progress

Once again I start out with an idea for a painting, Gordy makes the stretcher bars to the size I think I want to work with, this time 4' sq. and I proceed with stretching canvas and gessoing (priming).

Then comes the first interesting step, the background.  With the current canvas I thought it might be great to have a "rusted" background.  In the decorative painting world you can actually buy paint that is fashioned with iron particles that will rust with a corrosive solvent sprayed on after the initial layer of iron paint is dry.

My jar of the stuff was about dead. Reconstituting was an effort with more chunks of solid iron pebbles than actual paint emulsion.  Mixing some acrylic medium with it I managed to make something like pebbly iron paste to smash on the canvas panel, laying it down on the floor so that it would stick. Before it was even dry I used the spray bottle of corrosive on it distributing the spray and splatter over the entire surface.

The result was quite pleasing.
Now to the second step, the image overlay. The original idea didn't seem quite right so I looked through my scribbling sketchbooks to find an idea tha will work better with such a lovely forest of rust.










I was inspired by the idea of drawing over the rust with charcoal as well as paint some areas.  I was struck by the image of simple arms with hands meeting and sleeves.  I didn't want there to be a face so thought of gold leafing the face area to play shiney smooth with rough texture.  Tomorrow I shall paint in the area of the hands and arms perhaps leaving the sleeves as nothing more than suggestions.  Will have to see where it leads. 

The lighting looks a bit different from the fist picure because the rust was sealed to keep from turning black.

Once the charcoal has been sprayed with fixative to keep the charcoal from smearing I shall put in the hands and arms in oil paint.

I like how you can assume there is a head and face but the drawing of the bits and bobs lend a bit of pleasant abstraction, as if there's thinking or wandering in the mind going on with this character.  

As always I'm fasinated by depth and flatness.  Stayed tuned for phase3!

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