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”

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Comment by Rosigami on August 11, 2017 at 6:49am

Hi Anna, thanks for your comments here. Canoeing and hiking and taking pictures- it sounds just lovely. We do a bit of that when time and weather permit. It renews the soul..

Comment by Rosigami on August 11, 2017 at 6:59am

greenfeatherwoman, please continue to talk about art or anything else! I don't feel co-opted at all. 
I like Gamblin's products and have been to their website many times- will definitely check out their podcasts, which I have not ever done yet. It is exhilarating knowing that there is so much more to explore in painting.  
Actually I need silence and lots of it when I am painting. Immersion is an ongoing conversation with the picture that needs my total attention. I don't listen to music- too distracting, maybe because I am a musician, and I want to hear everything- and I don't even like it when the BLP comes in to say hi. 

Comment by Rosigami on August 11, 2017 at 6:59am

Steel. Oh if only it were. I'd be through that thing in a New York minute. 

Comment by Rosigami on August 11, 2017 at 7:16am

Terry, that's the first rule I learned- so important! And so far, I've had no issues with cracking. 

When I first started with oils, I accidentally mixed some raw umber acrylic paint with sap green oil paint, and it curdled and did some weird stuff on the surface. Luckily I was able to scrape it all off and continue.
I keep all my paints on separate carts, so I'm not sure how the acrylic tube landed on the oil cart (probably one of my students put it away and I didn't notice) but that was a very good learning experience.  

Comment by greenheron on August 11, 2017 at 7:23am

Rosi, hah, I’m the same about music. In addition to the mood distraction, anything with a beat messes up my rhythm.

But almost worse than playing music is leaving the laptop awake on my drawing table and checking in here every time I take a little work break. The other day, that turned into over an hour. The light changed and everything.

You also teach art, yes! If you send Gamblin your email, you will hear plenty more than you want from them, and they'll even send you swag. So will Dick Blick who sends me bags of swag, but I just pass it out to students. Gamblin has only sent samples, or at least that's all I've got. They also have some connection Strathmore, maybe both are owned by same company, but Strathmore also sends stuff, not lovely full sheets of series 500 drawing papers, but samples, and those are nice too.

Fat over lean can be used to get lovely crackly cracking on purpose, if you're into that kind thing, which I am :) 

Comment by Rosigami on August 11, 2017 at 8:09am

airone verde: ooohhhhhh swag! I'm in. 

Terry, it's all a learning experience- I'm still a newbie. 

Comment by greenheron on August 11, 2017 at 8:58am

And have you ever seen them in action??!!  Even an anal detail person like myself would get an instant migraine. They clean paintings with a small shred of cotton wrapped carefully around a toothpick and dab away at maybe one thirty second of an inch at a time. When I was an art student, our school was attached to a museum, so we got to see the innards over there many times. I'll never forget that room, three conservator heads bent, wearing those magnifiers on their heads, dabbing. My favorite secret view though is of the backs of paintings. Major masterpieces look the same as student paintings in the trash from the back.   

Comment by koshersalaami on August 11, 2017 at 10:12am


Better you should need silence when painting than when playing. 

Comment by Rosigami on August 11, 2017 at 10:38am

Kosh, Ain't that the truth!

Comment by greenheron on August 11, 2017 at 10:57am

Laughing over Monkey's joke about Pinkham-Ryder!  Like peanut butter slathered on a piece of white bread.

Also Turner. At his exhibit at the PEM last year, the last room was works on paper he did in the last few years of his life. They were a conservators nightmare, as bad as frescoes (almost). The light in the room was so dim I considered using the flashlight on my phone, but knew they whisk me away. So I peered at what looked like almost white paper–except holy moly, it wasn't. If that exhibit ever comes near you fellow arteeests, GO. 


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