Thomas is taking a break now, but here is the most recent status of the grisaille under-paintng.
Progress on the underpainting in grisaille for the Thomas panel since abandoning egg tempera.
I have been working with Tad Spurgeon’s text lately. It is chalk-full of information on the craft of painting, from technique to philosophy, historical research and criticism to in depth analysis of oils and their endless permutations, pigments, resins, additives, and etc, with many useful formulas and recipes. I have not explored enough to venture a review, but I am enjoying it.
Saint Thomas is now on the easel to receive a grisaille underpainting in oils. After being crushed by my attempt to make an egg-tempera grisaille underpainting on this panel of Thomas and Jesus, et al., I have decided to move my historical experimentations to a panel of more manageable dimensions. Moses in the Rock is the only picture I have made using egg tempera as an underpainting and it is quite small. This represents the largest panel I have ever undertaken with the most fully developed charters as well. Egg tempera is very slow (and I already work very slowly), and having already allowed a 5 year window to make this picture, I shall try to fully embrace those other challenges in a noble fashion in addition to honoring my time.
Mixing the medium for the thinning of colors for underpainting.
Applying a coat of thinned shellac over the absorbent gesso and egg tempera.
Please take a moment to visit my friend Mike Schultz interesting post on his blog the other day.
Beginning of grisaille (gray-scale) underpainting for panel of Thomas in egg-tempera.