PRISMATIC EFFECTS OF WATER-BASED MEDIA

Mountain Village, mixed media, 12 x 16, 2014
Mountain Village, mixed media, 12 x 16, 2014

My favorite painters have always been watercolorists, particularly John Marin.  I first discovered Marin’s work at the Kennedy Gallery in New York City when I was working as a young editor at Harper and Row.  When I started painting a few years ago, I emulated just about everything he had ever done, hoping to unlock the secrets behind his watery, loosely painted landscapes.

 

In this series of works including “Mountain Village,” shown here, I’ve returned to the techniques learned in emulating Marin.  Working with highly diluted and transparent acrylic paints, I’ve applied some of the pigments wet-on-wet, allowing the colors to bleed. In other areas of the painting, I added layers of transparent pigments after each layer had dried.  Like Marin, I’ve allowed some of the white of the canvas to show through.  Unlike working with oil paints which can feel thick and heavy, I love the looseness and freshness of working in water-based media and the resulting prismatic effects. 

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