Liralen Li (liralen) wrote,
Liralen Li

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Mounting Paintings

My mother and father taught me how to back my ink paintings, and for the last two days I've finally gotten to try and do more of it. The difference in how the paintings look when they're done is just amazing... and I finally took pictures of the ones I did in San Diego. Now I also have a couple of the ones we did here as well.

Backed Swallow and Cherry BlossomsSwallow and Cherry
First is the oldest of the paintings that we did when we were in SD. I decided on this one because John really liked it, and several other folks did, too; and mom considered it a good one to learn on as it's actually on single shuan, so it's very fragile and translucent in the original (on the right there). The backing paper actually made the whites whiter, and the colors show a lot more brightly against the new background. It's also pretty obvious that the paper flattened out and that all the stresses from having been wetted and dried by the ink and paints has been erased.

A nice by-product is simply having more paper around the painting, now, that can be used when matting so that I can actually space it correctly. I'm pretty happy at the difference. The differences in the others is as marked, but I'm going to just show the finished ones here, and you folks may well recognize some of these. *laughs*

Backed Sparse BambooBacked Windblown Bamboo
Backed VersionBacked Pine Tree

I really like how the pine tree ended up as the old paper had these odd vertical lines on it after I'd painting on it. I wasn't too sure I liked the extra shadowing of the branches on my wisteria... but so it is.

Drying Chrysanthemum
And finally, a new painting. I did this following the chrysanthemum and plum blossom dvd that Oriental Art Supply sells. Ning Yeh is kind of fun to follow as he's pretty easy going and really paints all out. He just strokes things on with a flow that's easy to envy in a way. No fear and no hesitations. He just places stuff and it's lovely. I really do like his layouts, and I love the flow of this flower. Of course it's not exactly like his, but I really enjoyed doing the leaves nearly as much as the flower itself. There's also one looking down more on the center of the head that I've done, but it's drying as well. *laughs*

John and I did the whole backing process on the chrysanthemums in order to practice and see how things worked here instead of there. In SD the paintings took three days to dry. Here, when we put them on a plexiglass plate, they dried within an hour; but the plexiglass didn't have enough grip for the glue, and they literally fell off the plexiglass. We heard these pops and crackles and it turned out that the drying paper was pulling so hard it pulled the glue right off the plexiglass. Luckily, the glue works just fine on regular glass, and after I rewetted 'em and put them back up on glass, they've dried straight and haven't just popped off again. Whew.

It was a really good thing I decided to do pure ink drawings for this exercise as all the repeated wetting and drying would have wrecked havok on the watercolors, as they can and often do run when rewetted, unlike the ink.

Now I have pictures to make a visual tutorial of how to back 'em. That should be fun to do.
Tags: painting
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