I was reading labels on some new art materials this morning and thinking about keeping my paintings archival.
There's a lot of chemistry involved in traditional painting.
See my sad tales in blue at the end of this post.
I used to love the experiments we did in grade school chemistry class.
And here's one of my favorites that involves Gummi Bears.
Now, of course, we will no longer be allowed to take gummi bears on airplanes.
And we must consider the ethics of using gummi bears in experiments like these.
Besides a sweet tooth and a passion for red Gummi Bears, why did I post this?
I've made some awful stupid (sometimes chemical) mistakes. They took me by surprise - sort of like that video clip above.
!. I've got cracked paint from not following the "fat over lean" rule. I fixed that by following the rules and using Winsor-Newton's Liquin or Gamblin's Galkyd Lite in all of my layers.
2. I once got a tip from a painter I admired (and unfortunately trusted) in The Netherlands who said he used house paint to tone his canvas. When I did that a sweet little still life cracked and the paint flaked off after 4 years. Grrrrr, it still hurts.
3. I once mixed my own rabbit skin glue and it took a week to get that smell out of the studio. I had to toss out an expensive - but smelly - canvas.
4. I once painted a canvas with Genesis, forgot that I had used that special kind of paint and a year later I "varnished" it. The paint wrinkled up like an old prune and refused to dry. A painting I liked was ruined and had to be tossed. If you use Genesis Paint (it is wonderful non-toxic stuff) you must not mix other materials with it.
5. I stretched a piece of linen on regular stretchers - 24" x 30," and slaved over the painting for a long time. It hung framed in my studio one winter when the heat was turned off for a week. The linen suddenly dried out and shrunk snapping a long stretcher bar. The painting had to be restretched and I lost 6" off the right side. It wrecked the composition and I cannot sell it. Now I only use heavy-duty stretcher bars for work 20" x 24" and larger.