preparations and musings / by Philip Tarlow

5:55 PM: today was one of those preparation days. preparation for a 2 day trip to boulder for critical actionlab meetings, and stretching of a new 38x38" portrait linen canvas, which will allow me to dive back into work on friday morning. generally, a short break such as this allows me to re-group and begin conjuring a new painting. 

SITE-view towards aerides, 1974.jpg

what's new in this process is the feeling i have, similar to the state i was in before going into my studio to create a new collage-based painting. like my gaze series, which were all collage based, shifting in unexpected ways hourly. 

now, however, i'm not using collage and am working on portrait linen, usually reserved for detailed, realist oil paintings such as this one: the view from my athens studio towards the tower of the winds, painted in 1974, now in a private collection.

using portrait linen in this new way, employing crayon, graphite stick in addition to oil paint, and scraping into the still wet paint, gives me that same feeling of anything goes. calligraphic strokes with graphite or crayon take the painting to a very different place and allow me to employ my well honed skills at painting, for example, the details of a branch while at the same time cutting loose with full body engagement.