22" x 15", watercolour, 1998

This is the painting Easy as Pie is abstracted from.

The watercolour paper used for it was 300 lb hot pressed (smooth) and absorbs water differently than my usual, preferred paper, 300 lb cold pressed (rough). The absorption rate of the smoother paper is quicker so you have to be very decisive about the colour you're about to lay down otherwise you've got about only three seconds to tamp it up with some tissues --and using a brush with clear water to try to erase the stroke is futile. This makes blending more difficult, but it keeps you on your toes.
Risky paper.
The rougher cold pressed paper, especially in the heavier weights, is comparitively more forgiving; tamping up colours, esrasing with clear water, and blending colours is more relaxing with it.

I remember how fascinated I was by the stripes in the model's sweater because they really helped to describe contours and shapes, but after doing the arms I felt I was being too literal and backed off when it came time to do the torso. In retrospect, this works to the painting's advantage as the lines lead your eye to the face and no lines below the face don't distract from it.

The word "mad." is written in charcoal.


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