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Rescuing a painting - Red White and Blue Rose painting

Red White and Blue, Red Roses still life painting
38x46cm (approx. 15x18inch)
Palette Knife Painting

Just lately I have been trying to assess my older paintings especially those on stretched canvas. I have also started throwing out some of my older paintings on paper and cardboard canvas board. In the process I have come across some howlers (I was keeping them WHY!), some not too bad and allowed me to see my progress and some that were worth further work. This was one of them.

I started this one, and almost finished it, when I first started using oils. I tried to look at it with a fresh eye, and although it looked a little flat and dull (probably to not using enough paint) I decided it was worth working on.

This is how it looked before

I gave the surface a good scrape with a palette knife and cleaned it with my patented formula (see post about Varnish Beading and allowed it to dry.

I mixed some cold wax and Gamblin Solvent free get in a ratio of about 40%wax to 60% gel and coated the surface of the gel in an even surface.

I saw this demonstrated on a video by Brad Teare an artist I admire and who shares so much information, have a look at his blog THICK PAINT


I loaded up the palette knife with paint and attacked the surface.

The wax/gel mixture holds the stokes well but allows blending when necessary. It can get a bit 'slippy' if too much is used, but i have used this technique a couple of times when I have lost my way with a painting and have let it dry. It rejuvenates the surface and allows changes to be made, it also adds body to the paint - great for impasto work. The wax is matt and the gel has a gloss finish, together they give a nice satin finish to the painting.

 Some Close-ups of the surface - click to enlarge

Let me know if anyone else has used this technique and your thoughts on it.

Thanks for reading

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