Thursday, August 14, 2008
Thought it would be nice to give a flavor of the grisaille while in progress. The first step of course is the drawing. Depending on the complexity of the composition, it can be simple, or highly detailed. Since this particular painting is not overly complicated (at least by my recent standards), the drawing did not need to be very involved.
You'll notice the hatched areas of the drawing indicating dark masses and shadows. I only recently started doing this. Especially with complicated compositions, I found it incredibly difficult to look at 10 roughly parallel lines, count in from the edge, and try to remember the pattern of shadows, highlights, and middle tones I needed to capture. I don't need to make things any harder than they already are...
Anyway, after finishing the drawing, I apply a damar retouch. When working on the grisaille, the paints are heavily thinned with turpentine. This dissolves some of the damar layer, and the entire surface dries to a beautiful, almost enamel-like finish.