Saturday, September 27, 2014

Sunflowers and Pumpkins

Sunflowers and Pumpkins
Oil on linen board, 8x10
My first painting of the season with pumpkins, so I finally feel like fall is arriving!  My second painting at the Sunflower Festival, these gorgeous beauties were brought in by a local farmer.  As I finished my first painting, I turned around to see these being pulled out of his truck and placed on the tables under his tent.  A trailer of pumpkins also in tow, we were allowed to place them where we wished for a plein air still life!  The colors were so rich in the noon sun, and the cool reflected light from the tent cast a dreamy light on the arrangement.  I had only one surface left, and that was a linen board given to me by an artist friend to try.  It was so lightweight - I had to clamp down my easel onto it to keep it in place.  It moved a little under my brush, which wood never does.  It was white - which I never start with, but I found that brushing on a mid tone with a little safflower oil made a perfect wash!  I wiped it around the surface with a paper towel until most of the oil was off, then began sketching in the composition with my pastel stick.  The stick was a little resistant to an oiled surface, but I could still use it.  The paints behaved as they would on canvas, so this lightweight surface option might be a good choice for overseas travel, or anytime surfaces needed to be checked in for flight.  I much prefer the birch boards, but they would get pretty heavy in a hurry.  This is painting number 636 in as many days, and painting number 26 in the 30 Day Challenge.

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