Painting is the one thing that keeps me from sinking into an abyss of anxiety caused by the current political/cultural/social/etc chaos. So, I paint as often as I can. That immersion has become more important than ever.

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The smoke from BC has changed the Puget Sound summer air, made it somehow thick. It's not humid here, exactly, but the air clings to the skin and the body reacts as though it were damp. The haze of smoke creates a filter that allows us to look directly at the sun, and photograph it without filling the lens with obscuring light

I painted this a few days ago, another view of Sinclair Inlet at sunset, perhaps a little more abstract than the other sunset picture. It's more about the sun than it is about the water or the land. 
I used an orange-red ground again, but this time I masked out the sun so that I could make it more intensely white. For a little while each evening, before it drops below the horizon, it blazes like this but you can still look at it. The BLP says it burns his retinas (the painting, not the actual sun). 

I posted it on FB as soon as it was done, and within hours I had an offer to purchase it. Since it will be wet for quite a while, and then will need to be varnished, I get to enjoy it for a bit before I send it off. I'm really pleased that someone wants it. I don't really have a hard time letting paintings go after the initial birthing process, but I don't have a pressing need to part with them, either. I’m thrilled that Looking At the Sun will go to someone who understands this piece. 

                           Looking At the Sun  © Rose Guastella 2017  Oils on canvas  16” x 20”

Views: 386

Comment by Rosigami on August 10, 2017 at 7:19am

Obviously not a post about the eclipse! 

Comment by alsoknownas on August 10, 2017 at 7:23am

I'm glad it was purchased. It's one of your best.

The sun has looked so strange here in the Pac NW the last 10 days. Canadian Smoke.

Comment by Ron Powell on August 10, 2017 at 7:28am

Congrats on both the breathtaking painting and the sale.

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on August 10, 2017 at 7:35am

It's really gorgeous.

Comment by Rosigami on August 10, 2017 at 7:50am

alsoknownas, I'm glad too, and appreciate the compliment. 

The sunrises have become strange, too. No color to speak of and uniform grayish skies not made by clouds. 

Comment by Rosigami on August 10, 2017 at 7:51am

Ron, thanks!


Comment by Rosigami on August 10, 2017 at 7:52am

Jon, thank you!


Comment by koshersalaami on August 10, 2017 at 9:44am

I see what the BLP means.

If the eclipse hit your neighborhood, you'd be able to watch it with no equipment. Everyone would be in your neighborhood. 

Comment by greenheron on August 10, 2017 at 10:19am

You are really chugging along to Hotsville. Congratulations on the sale. Maybe you can take the BLP out for a nice dinner before the nuking.

Re: smoke. A few years back, a paint plant several miles away blew up, just exploded, then burned for nearly a week because of the solvents soaked into the wooden floors. The stank permeated everything; even a loaf of bread I had on the counter tasted like it.

My thoughts on varnish. Like on wood, it gives depth to the details. But it can alter your palette subtly, and years later (if you care about this stuff), it can look like you dipped your sparkling sunset into a vat of sepia gunk. Oils, unlike chalky milky acrylics, kinda come with their own varnish. You might not want to listen to me, because all I do now is draw and what do I know about varnish in 2017, zilch, just what I see the kids doing. Maybe make a little test swatch?

Comment by koshersalaami on August 10, 2017 at 10:46am

This sounds like the Sistine Chapel ceiling, though I think those layers were from smoke.


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