Thursday, May 10, 2007

I'm in a bit of a squeeze

I'm in a bit of a squeeze given that the stretchers I have available are a pair of my typical 5' verticals but, unfortunately, a pair of atypical 44" horizontals--making my portrait of Ole Bobby Lee a good four inches thinner, side to side, than what I am used to.

There is a theory that says painting is all about math. If this is true, and it may be, then I'm having a little trouble with my math. This may not surprise those who called attention to this quote from my "Oh Shit...200 Posts" post:
That's 200 posts in about 300 days, which is what? Two a day? Something like that?
The suggestion by some wags was that I'm math challenged. Me? I don't like math anyway--it's full of problems.

Here is my working maquette of Robert E. Lee. It's a famous photo.



You can see, if you click in, that I have inscribed a two-inch grid on the surface of the 8x10 photo. I have then quadrisected the two inch squares, allowing me more landmarks by which to transfer the image, square by square, to the canvas. Sometimes the big lines and the small lines get confusing, so I've also indicated the corners of the primary squares with little Xs. Double click and you can see better.

Now, I would do this for any painting. What flummoxes me is that my canvas no longer directly reflects the dimensions of the photo (8"x10" being the same format as 4'x5'). So my plan, once the surface is ready, is to divide the canvas into 11" squares. This will account for the side to side variance. I will just let the top and bottom squares run longer vertically, and this will solve the problem to a degree.

The question is always, how so to do it. I've got five inches to deal with, which is really quite a bit. One theory says to go with 10" squares and paint one" top and side borders, with a wider bottom border. The effect here would be one of a massive Poloroid print.

I don't expect to do this. Perhaps a beer will help.

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