Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Painting with Lipstick 2

Well!  I haven't  posted in a while - been busy - sort of - and now my PC is on its last legs.  I'm afraid to turn it off (it took me 2 days to get it to turn on), so I went out and bought a new monster gaming pc from Gateway.  It should last me for a LONG time :-)  But I have to copy and take down all the settings and serial numbers etc so I can transfer/reinstall my hundreds of s/w to the new PC.  So it sits in it's box until that's done, and my old PC never gets turned off....

But I've also been busy working - just finished playing with the Sennelier Oil Pastels again (hence the title, painting with lipstick), this time on canvas.  I did a portrait of my son Caleb, who's 26.

Caleb, oil pastel on canvas, 8x10 inches, 2010

While I enjoyed working on canvas with the oil pastels, I didn't think about the ramifications until after I had framed the piece.

Oil pastels never dry out!  They stay sticky!

The canvas is framed in a beautiful frame - but it is open to the air.  And because the pastels are applied fairly thickly, there is a relief to the image. 

Now this might not seem too bad , except for the following:
  • I have a dog
  • I have a dog that sheds copiously
  • I like to open the door/windows to let fresh air in
  • I have a fireplace I use on a regular basis
What's that got to do with anything, you ask?  WELL -

Since oil pastels don't dry out, they can't be dusted, because the dust will adhere to the sticky surface, which stays movable - so if I try to 'rub' the dust off, I end up mushing the pastels, and messing up the portrait.

OY! Guess I'll have to figure out how to put it under glass.

In the meantime, I will start using paper as a base, and coat it with gesso to seal the surface so the oil doesn't affect the paper.  I'll also do larger paintings - Sennelier pastels are about the size of lipsticks, and so soft you can't really get a point on them - so they're suited to larger images.  Think I'll try a landscape next :-)

I've started work - finally - on the charcoal portrait of Yves that I talked about some 3 or 4 blogs ago.  Should have it finished within the next couple of weeks, and will post it to the Transom then.

In the meantime, happy St. Patrick's Day!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Terry, you might be interested in reading this info from the Oil Pastel Society on framing without glass:
    I also use oil pastel on paper which I mount on panels, spray with fixative and varnish. It works.