View Full Version : Talk about your fixer upper WIP

08-08-2009, 10:45 AM
This is a painting that I worked on last week. Wow did it bomb. Anyway I thought it would be a good as an example of what not to do. I was just going to file it under garbage and believe me when I say that folder is getting pretty big. If something is learned by this by either the members or myself I'm willing to put myself out their. I truly am terrible with landscapes but would like to learn. I used Grumbacher MAX and used my usual 1/2 water 1/2 w/s lindseed oil. Now I realize that their is part of my problem very smooshy (not exactly a technical art term) paint and just blah. Now I have several ideas on how to start my next one with Grumbacher MAX due to the great information on the technical thread. Don't know if anything can be done with this one. If not any advice I get can apply to the next one I attempt. If yes then I'll give it a whirl. The reference photo is part of the landscape challenge for this month and no way was I going to post this over their. They're great people but this one would bring down the whole thread. It's 12X16 on Fredrix canvas paper. Please note that I have a very quirky sense of humour.

C&C Welcome! :D


08-08-2009, 05:51 PM
Gosh this looks like a lot of my oil paintings after the initial days work, since painting wet on wet can often turn everything to a mid value! All it needs is to dry and then you can add your darks and your lights!


08-08-2009, 07:52 PM
I agree with what Don just said. Basically it's just looking a little muddy. You just need to make some of the edges a little crisper and bring in a few brighter and darker values. I've been running into the muddy problem myself with the painting I'm working on, it's tough to walk away when you just keep looking at it say "this isn't right." But letting it dry and painting over it sometimes is just what it needs. :)

I think I just said what Don did but in a different way.... hmmm... sorry. Maybe I still helped though:o

Stoy Jones
08-08-2009, 09:51 PM
I agree with what is said so far, perhaps take the dark tone in the foreground and incorporate it into the plow and tractor? As suggested, sharpen a few edges. The left side seems a bit brighter, could that be the camera? Otherwise, even out the values and lighten up as you recede. I get mud when I try to add too many different colors too soon to break up a dull or flat area.


08-08-2009, 09:54 PM
I have seen a demo where the painter used 1/2 water and 1/2 linseed oil as a medium. Believe me, this is a recipe for disaster. Max will admit some water, but it has to be mixed into the paint drop by drop before you pick up a brush. I can see there is too much water in the painting above, as it has that milky quality I know so well from my first days with MAX. Cut way back on the water. MAX QUICK DRY medium helps the paint spread smoothly even better than water does. I recommend it!
EDIT: I want to quote RGB here---I just found his advice in the technical thread on using water with MAX:
"So in other words, after you have mixed your color, add drops of water to your color to get the desired manipulative quality.
"While MAX is made to be used with water throughout the painting process, you do not want to over dilute. If you get to a consistency like skim milk or less, the mixture may be too watery to adhere to the canvas." :thumbsup:

08-09-2009, 10:35 AM
These are not watercolor paints. Even acrylics should not be thinned too heavily.

I think this painting can be salvaged, Janet. Set it aside and come back to it later. Less water next time.

08-09-2009, 10:53 AM
It's all been said. Let it dry and consider this attempt your under painting. It definitely can be salvaged without so much water. Maybe it's time to try the walnut oil you've been wanting to try. I've never used it with Max, but it sure works well with WN. I just put a small amount on my pallet and then dab the corner of the brush into it, mix it into the paint until I get the consistency I like. I guess it is like adding a drop of water at a time.


08-09-2009, 03:10 PM
Thank you sooo much everyone for your wonderful help! You've given me the courage to continue with this one. :)

08-09-2009, 03:16 PM
Oh yes definitely continue! The beautiful earth colors and the subject make it all worthy of your talent and effort. The walnut oil has worked really well for me with MAX too. Try it, you will like it! and if you don't, I will buy your unused portion!

08-09-2009, 03:28 PM
Hi Karen! Thank you so much for the support and kind words. Great tip about the Max and walnut oil. The walnut oil was already on my art supply list but it's great to know in advance that it will work with MAX. This painting is at my camp so I'll have to wait until the weekend to work on it. :)