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I took last Friday off from work to spend the day painting. I don’t remember the last time I was able to spend the better part of my waking hours painting. I got a whole 10 hours in. That’s a big difference when you’re used to dragging yourself up to the studio to work on personal work after spending 8 plus hours a day at the day job. As much as I want to work when I get home, because it’s more enjoyable work, often I’m battling with my psyche about being tired from working all day, so I really want to rest…but I want to work on my own work. Not to mention then there’s the whole logistical problem of figuring out what I can accomplish at one sitting versus how tired I might be. You know, oil paint doesn’t dry quickly, but with certain mediums you mix with oils there is still only a window of how long you have to paint. Pretty much have to accomplish something at one sitting at night, because by the time I’m back at my desk it will have dried enough to not be “workable” anymore. I spent much of the weekend painting and managed to get a great head  start on the underpainting for the frame as you can see. Everything is “there” now. Just need to work it up in oils. I really dig doing the underpainting in acrylics since they dry so quickly, but it would have been nice to have a slowing medium to smooth things out better. I used one before a long time ago and completely forgot about it. Note to self: Purchase said medium. Not a big deal because I’ll be painting over everything, but it would have been nice to have that as an option.

I worked on the tapestry background some and tomorrow will work on the drapery in the background. Basically I’m just doing all the boring stuff first and leaving the fun stuff for last…which is, of course, Madame Bear.

On a side note, not only did I spend another week on color studies, but you might have noticed I changed the background some. Sometimes something is bothering me about a piece and I just can’t put my finger on it. I think the reason I went through so many color studies was not because of the color so much as I was not happy with the background. As you’ll see here, I only had tapestry in the background. After looking at so many 18th century portraits, for inspiration, I felt like it really needed something. So I added the drapery and reduced the size of the tapestry pattern. I felt like the size of the pattern was competing too much with the pattern in her dress.

Anyway, so I plod on.

See you next time! Hope everyone is well!