sensitive tweaks to gaze 35 / by Philip Tarlow

1:15 PM: mikela & i are usually on the same page; today even more so. she walked over just as i was about to make some very carefully sensitive tweaks to gaze 35, without upsetting the delicate, impossible to recreate balance. and she was at exactly the same point with her work on actionlab360

she came over a second time, when she had just completed her work. the moment she opened the studio door, i was declaring gaze 35 resolved. the true test will be tomorrow morning, after i've brought it back to the house & hung it. right now, i'm considering this a breakthrough painting in the series. one of the reasons for this is the interplay of the ghost image peeking through on the right, which works both as content: revealing the story behind the face, and as form, creating a subtle interplay of biomorphic shapes that, i believe, allow the suggested forms to become equal in importance to the realist content of face, necklace, letter and so on.

one other breakthrough i'd point to is my success at using acrylics in a way that is as painterly as if i were using oils, with their capacity for infinite progressions of sfumato. this is an italian word derived from fumo, which means smoke or fumes. oil paints allow for a soft transition between tones; something that was not possible with egg tempera, the medium being widely used until the 15th c., when oil paints supplanted it.