I am digging the grid right now, and after project 22, when I first used the grid with the watercolor enso-like forms, I wanted to work a little bigger. This one is 28cm square, divided into 7cm squares. I’m still going with the cobalt blue and yellow ochre greenish gray here, as I did the two previous days.
I am really intrigued by this cobalt blue and yellow ochre mixture I used in yesterday’s enso, so today I made three using the same two colors.
I only brought a small watercolor kit with me to Australia, and I’ve been missing working more thickly with paint. (I miss my oils, but they are packed away in our storage unit in Philly.) So I got a few tubes of gouache paint since it doesn’t require any specific mediums and is very immediate. It’s been a long long time since I used gouache, so on Saturday I played around with a few colors to see how the paint behaves. Exciting stuff. I can use it almost as transparently as watercolor, build up quasi opaque layers, use it thickly (but not too much or it risks cracking), subsequent layers of paint can “pick up” color below (this can be a disadvantage too), and colors can run and bleed similarly to watercolor. Since I was just tooling around on a piece of paper, I wasn’t expecting to make anything in particular, and the color reflected this; it was pretty awful! On Sunday, I decided I’d try to make something of it though. Using the paint’s opaque qualities to work additively I covered up and unified some the marks. I folded and cut it into a book — why not? — and then worked on each page, sometimes moving back and forth between pages. I finished with some ink drawing as well. While the palette is a little odd for me, I think the final piece is kind of interesting, even if just as an experiment! Here it is, page by page:
This week’s 10 cranes… The current crane tally is 37.
Finally had the chance to put something a little more substantial together today. I’ve had this in my head for some years now, but didn’t know how to get it down. It’s 20cm square. Agnes Martin’s work means a lot to me, and I finally feel like her work has filtered through me in this piece.
Two ensos for today. I started the top one and then wanted to see what using more yellow ochre would look like, so I did the one below as well. I worked a little differently here because I did the watercolor portions of both pieces, Noah woke from his nap, I fed him, and then came back to the pieces, and finished them with the red ink. I’m also starting to wonder about the red “seals”. When I started these, they were a reference to the Zen paintings that inspired me, but now they are starting to seem redundant.
Today’s enso. I’m starting to vary the red line a bit more here.