Sunday, September 20, 2009

Chapter 2. Tom awoke early the next morning and was anxious to get started. The canvas was already stretched and prepared with a light umber tone. He had two rules for starting a painting. One was to take your time and decide what you want to do before jumping in, and two, not to wait to paint what you are most excited about. He squared the canvas lightly in pencil and broadly sketched in the composition with vine charcoal to satisfy the first rule. But he had been dreaming about those figures all night and couldn't wait to get going on them. To the casual viewer this looked a bit like starting a portrait by painting the eye first and then building the head around it, but Tom was so well prepared for this painting that he was able to take this bold step with confidence. He had so much to say that it ended up being nearly 30 figures.


Toward the end of the day he finally got around to filling out the rest of the painting. It was all going beautifully, it was the best composition of the quarry he had ever done. Then he suddenly realized how exhausted he was. He was so excited about what he was painting that he hadn't noticed how hard he was working.....