Friday, May 1, 2015

On the Easel - Tea Kettle Daily Acrylic Painting - And Using Golden Acrylic Retarder the First Time

"My Old Tea Kettle," acrylic on panel, 6" x 6".

My husband and I got this tea kettle as a wedding gift in 1998. To be honest, I've never used it that much, preferring the quickness of my microwave for a single serving of tea or oatmeal. But, I always have it sitting on the upper left burner of my stove - always. It just "feels" like that's where a tea kettle should be.

I've also adjusted my painting technique a bit again. I switched from oil to acrylic a few months ago for numerous reasons, and I've been working ever since to figure them out. Today, I added Golden Acrylic Retarder to my paint for the first time. Initially, in January, I started painting in plain fluid acrylics and glazing medium alone, to get me to adapt to the quick drying time of the acrylics. In March, I began adding a bit of water, or sometimes painting with straight acrylic and water without medium. This gave me a bit more flexibility but I was careful not to overdo it. I'm glad I did it this way, which was admittedly tough, but now that I have mixed in the retarder I'm seemingly able to get them to do what I want - have the fluidity of oil paint, but only for a few minutes, then the benefit of the quick drying time of the acrylic. If I'd started out trying to do it all, I don't think I would have understood the inheritant capabilities of my acrylics correctly.  

For this piece, I mixed just a drop or two of the retarder into each puddle of color on my palette. I was then able to paint this directly or mixed with just a bit of water. Then I incorporated a bit of glazing medium at the end, just to give a bit more depth to the final colors. It was excellent practice and I was able to blend my colors more smoothly.

Thanks for looking! I'll post this work on eBay on Sunday night.