Stone Coal Studio

Stone Coal Studio

Thursday, February 16, 2017

In the Middle

According to Ben Franklin's Almanac (published by the editors of the Old Farmer's Almanac):

For every thunderstorm in February
 will be a cold spell in May.

Fortunately there have been no local thunderstorms here.  Our weather has been changing every few days from bitter cold wind to warm spring-like days.  But we are still "in the middle" of February, of winter, of the unpredictable temperatures, etc.....

And so it seems to be the same in my studio I am exactly "in the middle" of several paintings.  This week has been simply putting in the hours to paint.  

However I do have some progress photos of the big (36 x 36 inch canvas) that was posted on the blog last week (Feb. 9, 2017).

 The big canvas has moved up to the studio with a couple new layers added to it.  The photo above is its current look.  You can see some of the major shapes being developed.  I do like the big red shape at the left-center top and it will probably stay as the focal point.

I'm showing these photos backwards so you can see that I am keeping the dark pattern in the painting.  How did I create it?  It was simply a matter of taking white gouache mixed with turquoise watercolor and painting out the areas of the canvas that I did not want to keep.   This layer was "fixed" with acrylic spray and then acrylic gel so more layers can be painted on top.

A final update from the January 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge is that some of the daily paintings have sold already (thank you to my collectors!)  Several others are on display at my retail/gallery shops (Goose Creek StudioAllegheny Highlands Arts and Crafts Center, and 2nd Helpings Gallery).  

The final grouping of challenge paintings were framed this week thanks to the frame shop at Goose Creek Studio which made this wonderful assortment of small frames that really highlight the art.

(More small paintings ready to be delivered in March and April.)

Thank you again for reading my blog.  
I appreciate your checking back and hope you stop by again soon.


  1. Congratulations on your art sales - lucky collectors indeed! Your progress on the start is so interesting Judith. I have a question about your mix of gouache and watercolour to paint out parts of the canvas - do you use this instead of an acrylic mix because it is more transparent? The mix is beautiful - will check back to see your progress. Have a great day!

  2. Yes the gouache and watercolor is more transparent. And it is easy to remove (even when dry) with a wet paper towel so it allows for some "back and forth". It is necessary to fix it once I decide to keep it but it takes one more step with the acrylic spray as I usually apply a layer of gel to isolate each coat. Thanks for asking!

    1. Thank you very much for answering. Much appreciated. I really like the effect it gives to the painting. Can't wait to see more of this painting.

  3. Thanks for sharing your process Judith :) Helps to understand better, how your work comes to life. Congrats on the sales, awesome! The small pieces look great get ready to say goodbye to them soon!