Session #033, Work #025

Tonight, more drawing, and a Gesso test. I broke the drawing session today into two parts, and took a small break in between.

When I returned to the drawing my focus was still intense and accurate. I’m going to try and take a break every 30 minutes from now on. Hopefully break will lead to longevity.  Tonight there were too many distractions and I couldn’t get in more than an hour of drawing.    

Before break drawing
Continued drawing after break.



My hierarchy of painting importance

  1. Drawing
  2. Value
  3. Edges
  4. Composition
  5. Color



How can I improve the drawing

I’m extremely happy with the drawing so far. I improved the drawing further from the last session and I didn’t even use the previous comparison to guide my changes. The top of the mushroom was drawn on pure measurement and its accuracy is almost perfect!

I really need to work on the face though, it needs help. The brush strokes are so tiny here that my hand needs to be absolutely steady in order not to make a mistake.

Canvas Gesso Test

4 canvases each with a number of coats of Gesso, and stained with burnt umber. To test which one I like best
4 canvases each with a number of coats of Gesso, and stained with burnt umber. To test which one I like best

Gesso test

So, I have several canvas boards and I’m not very happy with their painting surface, so I wanted to try some gesso and different number of coats to see what I like best. At some point I’m going to find some triple primed oil canvas boards and try those expensive things out, but until then I’m going with the budget solution.

First off, the gesso was sanded a bit with 220 grit sand paper just to make the surface a bit smoother. The surface of gesso reminds me of chalk, it seems like it would soak up a bunch of paint so I applied my usual ground.

Now, for this initial stage of the boards I will say that I like the plain Blick canvas board without any extra gesso applied. Its smooth after being sanded but not too chalky and the color applied to the canvas is much more even without the gesso brush strokes showing. I guess I could have used a non bristle brush to apply the gesso so that there was less brush strokes. I will try that only if the extra coats of gesso turns out to be promising.

Beyond that, I really don’t see that much difference between 0 to 3 coats of gesso. The true test is going to be when I start drawing on these. I will have to set them up all on the same day and start an envelope so I can get a direct comparison.

Session Details