Painting in layers

I am learning new things like the importance of pausing in your work. It's true across the whole of life, take time to rest in between the activity. But currently I'm learning this in my painting. 
Oil paints have always been a mystery to me. I've created with this medium that I love for decades (on and off) but never really figured out how it works. 
It's only been recently that I've been taught how to paint in layers, and although I'm an absolute beginner, I am learning.
So today I thought I would share the stages of a project with you that I am currently working on.

Stage one
I painted my board with a tonally neutral color as a ground. In hindsight it was probably a bit dark. But I'm still learning. Then I waited for it to dry (note the fingerprint at the top of the canvas board! Oops!)

Stage two
A week later I drew the still life. I made sure the sketch I did was accurate. Without an accurate pencil sketch, the painting will struggle with inaccurate form. It's so much easier to get it right at the foundation level

Stage three
Painting the ebauche layer. This is only my second time working on this layer in my paintings. The first time I did it the chroma levels were way too high and I had to do a wash over the whole thing to darken it down. Hmmm. Not that great. This time I worked a lot harder to get the mid tone right, and I think it worked better. 

 Stage four
After waiting a week for the ebauche layer to dry I worked on the over layer using linseed oil. I used a smaller brush and worked on the pear on the left. Still more work to do on this piece of fruit but I need it to dry a bit first. 

The painting will need lots more sessions like this....I'll keep posting pics as I go. 


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