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Varnishing Process: Red in Big Blue

Finished this a few weeks ago and just varnished it last weekend (Happy Easter!) I’m using a Gamblin Gamvar/OMS/ Cold Wax mix. My technique is a hybrid between direct and indirect method, but I tend to finish with glazing layers (and thereby get a hard—Liquin or Neo-megilp—finish on the outer layer, or two, or three). So the final varnish is, for me, to only even the sheen and I use the Cold Wax to diminish the glossiness.

This was the first work I’ve done on oil-primed linen: a very unique support. The linen is slippery and soft, it doesn’t bite the paint and only accepts a thin-film at one go. I stretched it myself and enjoyed the smooth texture, more sumptuous than acrylic cotton. Yet, I’m still frequently distracted by the flexing of the fabric surface while I’m working.

My work more and more is on wood panel (either thin birch ply or linseed tempered hardboard with cradled supports). I make the panels myself and vastly prefer the rigid support.

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