That’s it–can’t do any more

maew sainate final state

I ought to have begun this piece with sable NOT hog bristle brushes. The latter leave tracks / brushmarks that it is impossible to get rid of in the later stages of painting. You could scrape the paint off to smooth it down but you’d end up with a canvas that sagged in the places where you did the scraping off. Also, it’s very important to get the drawing right from the outset otherwise you’re forever making corrections.

Oil on canvas, 18 x 18″, begun Feb and completed Mar 2 2019


  1. Of course it is your judgement that matters in the end, but I really like the sense of the coarser brushwork laying in the foundation and then being visibly refined. I think it gives the portrait depth and complexity.

    1. I mostly tend to work very fast to get the glaring white canvas covered and then refine anyway. I love the ‘first fiery’ stuff, the preludes, the looseness of the first marks, the painterliness… for me this method of roughing in the masses works best and I’m too old to change now. But I think I might get hold of some fine linen portrait canvas (sometime) and just try out some experiments with sable brushes. Love what you’re doing too. But I am the world’s worst correspondent. Please forgive me if I only infrequently visit your blog and give you ‘likes’… I just believe my time is limited, the days go by so fast. I have the opportunity and must finally produce a body of meaningful work.

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