This is a photo I took in my classroom of the lesson plan I made for my students today. A couple weeks ago, I had them make a grisaille painting of their shoes. Today, we pulled those paintings out and continued working on them. I made three smaller copies of my example painting so that I could illustrate a way to develop a full-palette painting on top of the grisaille underpainting.
I like the way this step by step instructional bulletin board looks.
The painting was still pretty wet today, so I wasn’t able to work on it as much. A more patient painter would wait until the paint is dry to continue working on it, but I am not that painter. Actually, I’m fairly patient, but I’m also really good at painting wet-on-wet. A traditional grisaille underpainting calls for using thinner rather than medium, but I use medium, which retards the drying process. What can I say, I like retarders.
Today, I worked on everything but the sky and the lampposts. If I was truly concerned with sharpness and accuracy, I would paint the entire painting to finish, and then add the posts and wires on top of it. But I like the look that happens when I have to paint around the posts. It’s a little uneven, a sort of hand-drawn look to the image. On all of these paintings, the wires are the last thing I paint. It’s slightly risky, painting tiny lines onto a nearly-finished painting. But I guess that’s how I get my kicks. Being risky.
Total aside: are you watching Mad Men? Was there anything better than this week’s episode when Peggy Olsen was driving a motorcycle in a circle on a soundstage? It was, as she is, sublime.
Hello, beautiful people of the interwebs! I got back from visiting Meg in Annapolis yesterday, and got down to painting this afternoon. Meg is doing great, healing well and quickly. Her parents are an absolute treasure. I suggest that if you are injured for any length of time, go do your convalescing at their house. Words can’t explain how great and kind and loving they both are. If you have a sloth addiction, Meg’s parents will be your best enablers. Care for a snack? Don’t mind if I do. Can I get you another glass of tea? Why thank you, Mrs. O’Brien.
So I got down to working today. I took these pictures of the painting in progress to give you a sense of how I begin a painting. These three pictures show my underpainting process. The great master’s used a painting process called grisaille, a monochromatic underpainting that indicate the values of the composition. I use elements of grisaille, but I incorporate a fuller palette in my initial underpainting. My underpainting process is looser and thinner than my regular painting process, and it allows me to build the final painting on top of it.
I’ll post the in progress photos of this painting throughout the week. That way, we can enjoy the two-dimensional pictorial construction of Gary, Indiana together.