Monday, June 1, 2009

You guys have me impressed and inspired with this blog! Great idea, and great work. I didn't accept the B&W challenge, although I have done some painting since the workshop ended. I was able to get in 4 pieces while still in Minnesota, and you can see them on my blog. I had a fantastic time in MN, and it is nice to have this site for us to stay connected. Thanks for putting it together.

After Taylors Falls, I tried my first ever noctural piece in downtown Minneapolis. Unfortunately it had to be scraped off right away. It was a piece I should've done in B&W first as I got the sky too dark and it upset the rest of the painting. By the time I saw to correct this, the area restaurants were starting to shut down and I decided it was time to leave. I really enjoyed painting at night and Marc was right about the handy Mighty Brite. I found mine at Barnes & Noble for just $25 and it worked like a charm. Can't wait to go night painting again.

I also assembled all the ingredients for Marc's perfect panels. It took a bit to find the pumice powder, but I found it today at Sam Flax. I also found rotten stone at Ace Hardware. Has anyone tried that before? It contains limestone and diatomaceous earth. A friend of mine uses DE in his panels, plus I really like saying diatomaceous, so I thought it might be worth experimenting with. Finally, tonight I plan to order some lead primed panels as Marc recommended.


  1. Hi Don,
    That's cool you tried a nocturne. That's still on my list of things to do.
    I went to the hardware store and bought some pumice. I added 1 tablespoon to about 1/2 cup of acrylic gesso-like substance and painted it on the MDF panels I have. I used it as the last coat (tinted with a bit of burnt siena acrylic paint). It works great and makes a world of difference in having the paint stick to the panel and being able to do more interesting strokes. It does get a bit hard on brushes but, what the heck, I can always get more brushes.

  2. Don, you are too funny. Diomatreceous? What the H is that? Also, I wanted to ask you about camping at Interstate Park. If I wanted to sleep in my van as opposed to a tent, would I still be wanting a camp site? Are there showers and flush toilets? These must seem dumb questions, but I am a Detroit-born person, and camping is an unnatural state.

    Good for you on the nocturne. I assume a mighty Brite is one of those cute little mining headlamps? Do you find, like Jan, that the prepared surface is hard on your brushes?

  3. Diatomaceous earth is some kind of silica powder. And yes, the panels my friend makes, which I imagine are similar to the pumice panels, are hard on the brushes. Marc talks about that and you can put in less pumice to make it less rough. Also, you have to watch your techniques as scumbling is very hard on them with these panels. It is a good way to turn your flats into filberts if you need to.

    There are showers and flush toilets at the park, and I recommend the Minnesota side, as they are nicer. Only the North Campground on the WI side has showers and they aren't quite as nice as the MN side. You would need a camp site to stay there, even just using your van. They have fire rings there that have grills at each site, plus a picnic table.

  4. Thanks for the info; I am debating whether I can return for Marc's week long workshop....probably not unless I can screw up my courage for camping.


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