Todays session begins with canvas preparation. This is the raw canvas I work with. It is actually a large canvas drop cloth I purchase from the Home Depot. I cut it into quarters and then apply gesso with a plastic scraper. Applying the gesso is a lot like icing a cake.
I place blobs of gesso onto the canvas and then smooth out the gesso with the plastic scraper. After the gesso is applied I then staple my wet gessoed image onto my studio wall.
Now I carve into the gesso an imprint with the butt of my paintbrush. This imprint has organic shapes and it will become the backdrop to my earth object that is being unveiled.
Todays session shows how I mix paint to come up with the right earth tone. By mixing orange with its complimentary color purple, I get just the right tone. Mixing complimentary colors will de-intensify a color without making it muddy.
It’s called the Munsell system of color mixing. I have been using Munsell color theory in my work for over 15 years. Munsell believed that additive color, or color from pigments should be as close to what the brain perceives as possible. He scientifically proved that the opposite of red is not green but blue green. If you stare at a red piece of paper for 40 seconds and then quickly move your eye to a white piece of paper you will see blue green. The brain automatically mixes the opposite color for you.
You can do this with any pigment color. The color wheel then becomes what your brain sees in nature rather than a theory that has been manufactured. I will talk more about Munsell and color mixing in the future as Munsell is very important to the development of my work.