September was a crazy month of painting fabric and nuno felting for my window display. When it was done I was exhausted and so anxious to get back to painting. Last week I cleaned and tried to return my studio to some kind of working state. I had these two canvases 26 x 36 inches that I decided to make a diptych and primed them a midnight blue. Boy, they looked dark. Today I took the plunge and did my first pour of oil paint on canvas since last May. There’s some glare because the paint is wet.
It’s a start and feels more successful than the messes I made in encaustic. I haven’t worked in encaustic in a long while and I’m still struggling to get what I want. I feel like a foreigner or a child, or both. I feel like a child in a foreign land. When I first started working with it, that is what I liked about it. It was exciting, like traveling to a new place where you don’t know the language and you don’t know what you’ll encounter. Now I’m finding I can work for hours without bringing a piece to completion. I layer, melt, scrape, and still no satisfaction. Frustrating. I guess it’s like learning a foreign language. So I was thinking about how a child communicates. They have limited vocabulary but usually find a way to communicate their needs. Sometimes it’s with a cry that communicates loud and clear. So I tell myself I need to simplify, resort to a limited vocabulary. I guess that can be scary sometimes, to drop the pretenses and just say what you mean. Another advantage children have, they don’t mince words they just say what they mean without the superfluous adjectives. I’m trying too hard, I guess. I keep hoping the results will be worth all the struggle. Here’s a few pieces I’m still working on.
Then I grabbed a small panel that had some colors smeared on it from when I needed to clean my brushes from time to time. I painted some dark brown circles, when in doubt paint circles, right? Then I layered and carved, drew with oil pastel, ran out of time and called it a day. I kind of like it, I mean I really think I like it. It’s simple and to the point. What do you think?