Daily Painting Challenge, January 2015, Day 10

January 10, 2015











oil on canvas panel 8×10″

Again, today, I’m veering away from my goal to work through all twenty-two projects by Arthur Stern aimed at developing colour mixing and palette knife technique.












Subject matter

The combination of the Spakfilla container and the palette knife gave rise to today’s subject matter. All week both have been waiting patiently for me to start filling in some cracks in a wall. Today’s effort relates to the projects in Arthur Stern relating to rendering surfaces, in this case, plastic and metal.


I notice that when I take a photo of the setup after doing the painting, the composition ends up being better than the one in the painting. I think this is a result of having “looked” at the subject for an hour or two and inwardly absorbing it. In a sense, composition is not the main game when it comes to these Challenge projects. But I know from life drawing that only after four or five hours observing the model does the “right” pose create itself.


I am very conscious of improving in some of the Stern processes, while floundering in others. Using exactly the right amount of paint on the spatula palette knife is an art in itself.

Lost and found edges

I’m  aware of my challenge colleagues using hard edges but sparingly, preferring a mass of “lost” edges. A balance between the two is vital and the over-emphasis on hard  or “found” edges hurts a lot, but when Art School resumes next month there’ll be no chance to use the knife – both lost and found edges will have to be created using a brush.


It strikes me that today’s and yesterday’s weren’t as effective as the day before’s. I put this in part down to the lighting conditions. The way to go is to paint in full sun with very strong shadows; my last two were done in overcast conditions.

No acrylic under-painting and a minimum of pencil under-drawing compared to yesterday. In Arthur Stern’s terms, today’s effort is halfway between a Second Statement and a Third Statement.

Thirty Paintings in Thirty Days, January 2015, organised by Leslie Saeta (http://lesliesaeta.blogspot.com.au).

Reference: Stern, Arthur. How to see color and paint it: a series of projects designed to open your eyes to colors you never saw before. New York, Watson-Guptill, 1984.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: