Don't bring a knife to a brush fight!

"Cerveza Time" 16 x 20 in Acrylic on Canvas
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"Looking In" 22 x 28 in Acrylic on Canvas
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Both of these paintings were supposed to be done with a painting knife. However, fate had other plans. As I worked in the lights and darks on Looking In, I realized I wouldn't get the texture I wanted on the sari unless I used sweeping brush strokes. The "first draft" of this piece had way too much in the background, so I knocked it back to a flat sky, grass, the woman, and the couple. The woman's clothing and pose were what inspired the photo I took (at the Temecula Wine and Balloon Festival), so I wanted the focus to be on that. This painting went through many "drafts," since I painted it without much of a plan in a quick afternoon session while the baby was asleep.

In contrast, Cerveza Time was done for the most part in one long session. I didn't do as much "revision" on this one, because I wanted to keep it loose. Cerveza also started with a full pastel sketch to show the values, which became an underpainting. I also took the time to make a thumbnail before embarking on the sketch. Cerveza didn't get much of a background, so it's like a floating bar-- isn't that the point of a beer garden?

Anyway, by the time I got to the real painting portion of Cerveza, I knew the knife wouldn't do me much good with all of those shapes, so I stuck with loose brushwork. It's best to keep a variety of painting weapons at hand, since at some point your painting will take charge of itself for a while.


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