Monday, November 24, 2008


I got an email from friend commenting that the purple dress in "No Place for Tears" overwhelmed the painting. He went as far as to photoshop my dress and turn it into a lighter color. I gave his suggestion weight because when the painting was planned I intended that the dress be white. The purple was only an under-painting that would later peek through lace-like flourishes of white.

So yesterday I started adding the uppermost layer of transparent white to my dress. I had the dress half finished when I called my husband in to take a look. We both agreed that the dress had become too busy with pattern. The painting overall suffered. So I began to wipe the white paint off. To help it come off I liberally added Turpenoid to painting's surface. First I noticed that my rag had picked up purple paint. Then I realized that while the dress had been dry to touch, the Turpenoid was so corrosive, or the oil paint takes such a long time to fully dry, that the surface of the dress lost color. In spots almost you could see all the way down to the white primer. Disaster!

It has been the a horrid, boring task to repaint the purple dress. The time spent on repainting takes me away from my other creative projects, paintings where everything that is happening is new and exciting. I am so finished with "No Place With Tears" that I don't even want to look at it anymore.

A lesson to learn. Turpenoid will take off more than one layer of paint. And it is possible to over paint a painting. It takes delicate timing to know when to stop. Because if you go to far it can be difficult, if not impossible, to reverse a painting back to its original look.

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