This was supposed to be a quick and easy project that went totally out of control. I wanted to try out Arches Oil Paper and quickly paint a bouquet of sunflowers in a tall glass jar meant for holding spaghetti noodles. I made and transferred a sketch (see below for process) and started painting on the paper, which I absolutely hated. It was dry, absorbent and paint wouldn’t slide or move on it. It just sucked in the paint and I was having no fun. I quit halfway through and cut off the parts of the painting I hadn’t finished. This is where I left it:
The next day I started over on a 6×6 inch panel that I’d sanded down from a previous failed painting. Again I intended to paint for an hour or two and move on to something else. Instead I worked and reworked over and over until I finally had a painting I could stand to look at (at top of post). Sometimes I think reusing panels is a mistake because the bad juju from the first one hangs around and messes up the next one.
The one nice thing about Arches Oil Paper is that it can be cut down and cropped easily like watercolor paper. Although it does not need to be gessoed I’m going to try gesso on it next time to see if that will make it more enjoyable to use.
Below are the process photos from start to finish.The painting on paper is Version 1 and on panel is V2. The ones labeled “Photoshopped” were photos of work in progress adjusted in Photoshop to try to solve the problems and then the next image is those changes implemented in the painting. If you’d like more detail about the process you can open this PDF of my full process chart with notes about each step.