Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Q&A Time

I got a lot of questions about recent posts, so I thought I'd answer them here.

How long did you need to wait before you could varnish? Can you share ... what kind of varnish would you recommend?

I do not wait the recommended 6 mos. before varnishing. My paintings barely have time to dry before they are framed and sent to galleries. BUT, I paint kind of thinly, use zinc/titanium white, don't add medium and I live in Texas where there is almost no humidity in the air - indoor or out. Often my paintings are dry to the touch overnight (as is my palette... which is annoying.) I wait a week or so at least though and then test. If the color doesn't come off on the sponge, I varnish. I read something somewhere once that said it was ok. So I'm going with it. I apply it with a makeup sponge too. It goes on beautifully!
I use Synvar varnish. Its an acrylic resin and won't yellow with age. "It may be removed with mild solvents for subsequent cleaning and conservation of paintings." I wanna be sure that the conservators can clean my works later at the museum. ;-)

Do the people realize you are sketching them?

Sometimes. But most people are absorbed in their work, computers, books or conversation. A few might catch my eye and I might look elsewhere or just smile. Same thing when photographing. I take a lot of shots from the hip. And sometimes I act like a tourist and like I am aiming at some interesting object or feature, but really, the people are the element I am most interested in capturing. If well and truly busted, I just tell them that I am an artist and getting some reference material to work from. I've never had a negative encounter but I've seen one mom get mad at an artist friend for taking shots of her youngsters. So be careful about the privacy people might expect to have even in public places. I take very general shots of the whole place, not zoom in on one person.

Just curious is this from a photo ref and how were you able to take a photo of the kitchen?

This was in reference to the chef painting. Yes, it was from a photo. And this was one of those ideal times when I WAS a tourist - I figure in NYC they are used to gawkers wanting to document every aspect of their visit. The kitchen was open and I had a good view so walked over there and chatted with the chefs and took some pics. I LOVED their tall togues! Theory is that the taller the hat, the higher the rank of chef. These must be culinary geniuses! Or maybe its like the Texas saying - "the higher the hair, the closer to God."


Denise Rose said...

Thanks for the varnish explanation. That helps a lot! I paint pretty thinly most of the time and always wondered why I had to wait for 6 months to varnish. I will give the Synvar a try!

Nancy Van Blaricom said...

Thank you so much for answering our questions. Especially being new to oils there are always questions.

Kay said...

love this post!

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