Although all my final paintings for this project were effectively finished I still felt that one of them, "Compassion", could be interpreted better.
Co-incidently I recieved a letter from the OCA advising me of a change of requirements to submissions for assessment. Basically they were asking for all paintings to be presented flat, mounted on black or white card and held in an A1 portfolio. Initially this seemed to cause me a major problem since all my work has been done on hardboard panels. However, they do allow for students already engaged in this course to continue as they have been. Phew!
I had a choice whether to continue as I have been, or change to the new guidelines. It set my mind thinking: I like painting on hardboard panels because they give resistance to the brush or palette knife but, even when primed, they are a bit smooth initially for applying heavier impasto layers of paint. And they are fairly heavy for posting! I decided I should trial painting on sheet canvas pinned tightly to a supporting board which would give me both the resistance and some texture.
Returning first of all to my sketchpad I made yet another sketch study with colours that suggested compassion to me: soft greens, yellows, and blue, with a touch of gold/orange as well:
"Compassion Pastel Study", A5.
Then, with the already primed canvas pinned to the board I marked out my painting size (leaving some space all around for stretching if I so choose at a later date) and then masked it off with drafting tape to create a sharp edge if I decided to present it that way. Finally for this first stage I gave it a liberal acrylic undercoat of strong blue:
"Compassion: Stage 1", Oils on primed hardboard, 61x40.5cm.
With the undercoat dry I started with some tentative marks based on my pastel study.
Then with bold layers of impasto oils I blocked in my main shapes using palette knife technique pushing and pulling the paint around to satisfy some internal prompting:
"Compassion: Stage 2", Oils on primed hardboard, 61x40.5cm.
Finally, trimming around to show the final image:
"Compassion: Final", Oils on primed hardboard, 61x40.5cm.
This will be what is sent for assessment with the canvas sheet pasted to a board and perhaps with a mounting board matt.
That definitely is the end to this project and to my mind one of the most satisfying pieces of work I have done: the colours are good and the painting technique pleasurable and suited to my personality. I will now use this way of painting for all my future paintings in Project 5.
Onward and upward!