Jonette Murray - N.Z Artist  
  • Technique

    15 October at 08:27 from atlas

    The first step in beginning a painting is developing an idea I feel drawn to express.  This can be triggered by an object of to relay an intended message.

    I set up the still life composition in my studio, carefully adjusting the lighting, colours, and items until I feel they are in harmony.  Once I am happy with the way it looks and feels I can begin.

    First I prime my board to ensure I have a smooth and stable surface to work on.  This usually requires one coat of sealant, and three coats of Gesso that are sanded between coats.

    Once dry, I begin with a loose painted sketch.  I try to paint from life whenever I can as I believe this allows more dimension and accuracy in the artworks.  There is a certain time pressure when working from life, especially when painting flowers of fruits which spoil rapidly.  

    Next I begin the under painting.  This is done by laying in the darkest shadows and progressing through the painting to the lightest lights.  I try to capture and define the forms as perfectly as I can while keeping the painting a little loose in the first pass.  After this initial lay in, I allow the painting to dry and spend some time contemplating what needs adjusting.  

    In the second layer of the painting I work on one area at a time until each part is complete, in a similar method to the Dutch painters.  When the painting is complete I may make a few touch ups or add a glaze to heighten or define a painting.  Once the painting is complete it is set aside to dry before it is varnished.