It’s been brutally hot and humid here the past couple of weeks, and the studio feels like a steambath. I was taking a break from the heat and relaxing in an armchair, not thinking about anything in particular. My eyes landed on a box of dropcloths that’s been sitting there for years, and it caught my attention.
I opened one of the packages, and found that the canvas dropcloth is fairly heavy and nice. It’s a different color and weave than the regular 11 oz. rolled canvas I buy from Chicago Canvas. Since it wasn’t being used as a dropcloth, I decided to cut it up and use it for a painting.
The result was fantastic! Here’s how my regular canvas takes the paint. The marks are very angular and detailed.
“Transmutation,” 36 x 48 inches, natural earth pigments on raw cotton canvas
And here’s how the dropcloth takes the paint. The paint bleeds out into the canvas and creates large flowy patterns.
Untitled, 30 x 40 inches, natural earth pigments on raw cotton canvas
Now I want to do more of these!
I’ve also been playing around with a test piece. It’s a piece of canvas where I try things out, and it has accumulated many, many layers of paint.
It started off as a subtle low-contrast piece.
As I added more layers, it turned into a more saturated low-contrast piece.
Then I added a roughly poured grid and cropped it a bit. I like the primitive look of the marks.
Unititled, 30 x 40 inches, natural earth pigments on raw cotton canvas
I might do more on this piece, or not. I’m not sure where it’s going. In fact I’m not sure where any of this is going anymore.
Being in a state of “not knowing” isn’t so bad. It allows me to be open to whatever comes next without feeling a need to control it.
The best ideas come to me when I’m not trying and just let myself daydream. One of the challenges with any creative endeavor is learning to turn off your mind and let something else come in and take over.
When do you daydream? I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts. You can share them with us in the comments section below.
With love and appreciation,