Monday, February 7, 2011

Chopping Wood, Washing Dishes...

Before Inspiration; Chop Wood, Wash Dishews
After Inspiration; Chop Wood, Wash Dishes
(Zen Statement)

Feb 7, ‘11

A gray and chilly day, 25◦’s, no wind and crows caw-ing in the woods behind the house.  I’m working in my studio today because it’s warm enough –  not too little, not too much.  And I’m bundled, could use mittens....  I’m enjoying the natural sunlight coming through the windows even though it’s thin, somewhat enjoying Albert going through his hell phase before he winds down into an all day nap.  (Can’t happen soon enough as he’s getting beyond irksome, way past cute.)

I’m at a stage in my Winter painting where I’m doing more thinking about doing than doing.  My 2nd working copy is leaned against a table across the room and I’ve been perusing it off and on,  as I multi-task a bunch of things.  I’m hawking an eBay auction that ends today.  So far, with a little more than an hour to go, I’m disappointed and what I’m going to earn doesn’t seem worth the time for packing and taking to the PO.  Hope the last bit of time that remains proves me wrong.  I’m making marmalade; just finished chopping the oranges and they’re bubbling away in the crockpot.  And a few other mundane tasks.  Before I sat down again, I taped the paper I’m going to be using for this painting to a large piece of foam core, a board that I’ve used for years.  

I’ve spent a lot of time living with the painting and have also tweaked it a bit when I see something that needs to be tweaked.  I had a good time messing around with the tree, making plans for when I do the tree on the ‘real’ painting....

Somewhere last night, I decided that I was going to do this painting on a quarter-sheet so when I was done cutting the oranges, washing the dishes and other tidying-up, I cut the paper and taped it onto the board.  Another step along the way.  The paper mounted to the board is leaned against the wall, ready to go.  

The next step on this painting will be to make more decisions regarding how I do the initial drawing on the paper. There are a few ways this could be done.  I could directly mark the paper into thirds with a soft pencil and ruler then follow the directions from the working copy or I could make a larger working copy, trace it and then transfer it to the paper.  

I’m leaning toward making a larger working copy and transferring it.  I don’t ordinarily do this but in this case I think it might be preferable as keeping the watercolor paper clean is important to me.  Marking the watercolor paper with pencil makes the paper very dirty and often requires a lot of erasing.  The paper can take it I’d just rather not spend the time.  Making a larger working copy also helps to refine the image, to simplify – and gives me time to form some new decisions in my mind, such as what to do about the color.  I’m still not happy with the colors on the 2nd working copy.

I use masking tape to tape the paper to the board.  By eye, I place the tape 1/4" into the edges.  On the working copy the tape area is defined by the 2 black lines that create a border.  On the ‘real’ painting, the tape gives me a sense of boundaries.

I look forward to more moments of inspiration but in the meantime, will keep on keeping on and go do some vacuum cleaning.

1 comment:

  1. Love the quote.. reminds me of a book awhile back.. "Chop Wood, Carry Water". I need to look that up again!