There are moments when a painting doesn’t do what you expect it to… and well, that’s what happened this week in the studio.
I found this nice, big canvas at a local Value Village for a steal, and figured it’d be a perfect candidate for a re-paint.
I cleaned the surface and coated the whole thing with my standard, orange paint. It helps block out the old design, and it’s just always my favorite color to paint on top of. Because acrylic paints are slightly translucent, and I like to work in thin layers, the color they go on top of shows through a bit and orange adds warmth to the painting.
After toning the canvas with the orange, it wasn’t screaming at me to keep going, and I hadn’t decided what direction to take it in yet. I knew it would end up being a piece for the upcoming Star Wars show, but I set it aside to dry until I decided on exactly what it was.
My first go at it was a portrait of Luke Skywalker. I did the initial sketch, and that was fine… but I wasn’t moved by it.
I put a splat down, to start a mosquito. I wasn’t terribly moved by that either.
This canvas stood propped against the wall, waiting to be worked on for a few weeks while I tidied up other things. There was no real rush, and I know that if I force art, it doesn’t come out nearly as good.
I decided… blue. I like blue. Not a huge decision, but it was evidently the right one. I grabbed my favorite blue, Ultramarine heavy body from Liquitex, and started painting abstractly. It was just a spacey-wacey background, and I was allowing myself to let go and enjoy pushing the paint around the canvas. Heavy Body paint is like butter, and it’s absolutely luscious!
I’m working in layers and taking my time with this piece. Stepping away from even knowing what the piece will be about. It’s freeing. So much of what I make these days has a theme and structure from the get-go. Darth Vader, Ackbar, Leiah all had the theme at least figured out before I put paint to canvas. This new blue painting is just… blue. We’ll see how this evolves!