Painting in oils is a wonderful medium, its buttery richness glides over the canvas, smooth and luscious, love it.  Squeezing the tubes and seeing the colour ooze out onto my glass pallet excites me every time!.  It does bring up all kinds of feelings though, for me it’s like if I paint in oils I feel “real” that I am not playing and feel much more pressure to create something that’s “perfect”.  The feelings of not good enough rise and it can be a struggle to get going, but once I am “going”, brush in hand the world stops, no head chatter, just mixing paint to the right shade and applying, brush stroke by brush stroke , observing the form, expressing the values, its magic really.

Perfection is a real curse though, and I imagine many people who start painting find this the biggest challenge, how to paint the perfect likeness.  To be honest why would you? one may as well get the camera out and take a photograph?  painting for me is a way to express something much deeper, but by painting from life helps to create the skill in marks you are making and observing and creating form.  I am still working on this aspect but hope one day I can find that space to create just for me.  Sounds easy doesn’t it, for me it isn’t and something that constantly nags at me.  I tell myself “find your style”  years later, I am still looking, but I know if I keep on I will find it.

I have used many types of paint and mediums and recently bought a tub of Gamblin’s Cold Wax Medium, haven’t tackled this but I will.  Michael Harding represents most of my paint and I like the way they give a potted history of the pigment.

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