Friday, December 21, 2012

Old Painting Made New

A few years ago I needed a large painting for hanging over our fireplace for the Studio Tour. At the time we didn't have one up there at all and it was about time. I decided to go long, vertically, since it would fit better. I made up 3 feet by 6 feet stretcher bars out of 2x4's cut down to 2"x 2" bars. I stretched canvas over it and began painting a scene of a sycamore tree up off the road to Nojoqui (no-ho-wee) Falls from a reference photo I had taken. I liked the original painting...looked good and fit what I needed it for. More importantly, it was the best I could do at the time. Things change.
I think I've improved a little since then so I took the painting down, wiped off the varnish with a rag soaked in pure gum turpentine (beyond stinky!) and began touch ups I felt would make the painting better. I wanted to throw in some oranges, touch up the tree bark and suggest some fallen orange leaves down in the grasses. Done....I also wanted to add a bit more color to the grassy meadow behind the tree and that was it.
If I painted this one all over again I'd do it much differently now. This was my largest painting at the time and painting larger is different. You need bigger brushes and you need to practise painting with  bigger brushes. I would use even larger brushes if I painted this one over again now. I think that would make you feel as if you were still working smaller but on a larger scale of course if that makes any sense.  


Christine Brallier said...

Love the changes you made! Great atmosphere and warmth there. Happy holidays, Ron!

Ron Guthrie said...

Hi Christine,

I like the changes too. Giuves it more color and sort of wakes up the painting. I've learned more about painting trees, especially sycamores, lately so I was really compelled to go back and rework this one once it was down off the wall.

Have a fun Christmas and a safe New Year!