time spent not painting
Well, a good part of my day was spent lamenting the fact that I wasn’t painting. A week ago, I bought loads of stretcher bars so that I could make a load of new canvases. I’m down to about four canvases right now. It frustrates me to think of a painting and to not be able to begin it. And so, every few months, I stop working for three days, and just blitz a load of canvases. As well as constructing new canvases, I took apart a few old paintings that I wasn’t too fond of, and rolled the canvas up. Also, I took apart a few premade canvases that a friend gave to me, so that I could replace some of the cotton canvas with linen.
This is a picture of my studio, the floor strewn with 27 stretcher bar frames for canvases. It is really time consuming to build my own canvases, but I save a lot of money doing it myself. As well, there is nothing nicer to paint on than a handmade canvas- premade ones are never comparable. I stretch the Belgian linen over the wood stretcher bars, size the linen with a rabbit skin glue mixture, and lastly I apply titanium oil primer over the linen. In all, it takes over twenty hours of work, not including drying time in between.
I get very frustrated by all of the time I spend not painting. I have to say, I spend so much time driving, talking, etc., that I wish I could just lock myself away in a studio in the mountains and just work by myself for a few months. And then I remember, for several months I moved to a cabin in the Mohonk mountains, upstate New York, and I was so lonely that I didn’t get anything done. I left after two months, though I had planned to stay six. But, this period by myself in the mountains was not useless, because I found that I actually needed distractions to keep my mind stimulated. I believe that Walden Pond was only a mile or so from a bustling nearby village.
And so, though I was frustrated that I didn’t get to paint today, I was able to get 27 new canvases underway. It is nice to know that there are 27 new opportunities for paintings.