"The Mantle" oil on illus. board 8" x 10"
Yeah, remember that I had done studies and such for this painting? Well, here it is. The intent was to do this much larger, and to be honest, it would have been far easier to do it that way. Getting the facial features and such at this size (the head must be a half inch high) was just a pain. Plus, I think I painted this thing at least 3 times. The first time, I had big retouch varnish problems. Then, it fell off the easel into a full palette. And the third time was because I repainted the head, and messed up the background around it while doing it - not seeing the correct values due to the paint sinking into the surface (a new kind of treated foamboard: it sucks).
Anyway, I don't know if I'll blow this up or not. At the moment, being in the midst of the second round of minumentals, I have no intent. There's certainly enough good info here to do it, so I may use it later. Or perhaps I will just sell it as a finished piece. Who knows?
I had other reference ready to do a series of these, but again, it will have to wait. Perhaps some day there will be a window to re-indulge my figurative ideas. At least the next time, I'll know better about trying new surface materials. That painter's foam is crap. And I'm sure getting used to the triple primed linen. Supersmooth surfaces can expose a ton of surface anomalies when photographed. I had to scan this (new scanner!), because I varnished it with Galkyd Lite. The retouch varnish proved impossible to apply on this surface. But the Galkyd is super shiny, and when I went to take a pic of this, all I could see was a reflection of me with a camera. That wouldn't enhance the feel of this piece very well, would it?