19 January 2015

"painting is a physical activity." -- in memory of frank wolfe.

email & words contributed by joe glincosky | mc blackbeard


i had asked frank a while back what one would need to begin painting. this was his reply, and i think it would serve as a great help to someone on the fence about beginning to paint. i felt this was an important gift that frank gave before he embarked on another journey. 

from: frank wolfe 
date: march 30, 2014 at 8:08:23 pm 
to: joe glincosky 
subject: painting


thanks for these questions. i had fun and gained some insight while writing this. i have not been painting for a while for physical reasons, but have enough other creative outlets that it's cool. and i will get a fresh start when i am able to pick up the brushes once more. gonna sketch and sculpt and write tonight. are you considering painting ? talk soon. peace. frank

painting: essentials and top 3 rules: essentials:

--motivation. desire.

--paint. acrylic or oil. (acrylics are easier to clean, and dry much faster than oils) colors: white, black, red, yellow, blue. perhaps a brown like burnt sienna or raw umber.

--a thinning medium for oils, like cold pressed linseed oil.

--cleaning stuff: water or turpentine (when using turpentines and such, you need good ventilation) / jars or cups. paper towels, and or cloths.

--some sort of palette ( wooden, plastic plate, palette paper, etc.)

--at least three decent brushes (sm. med. lg.) my teacher d. knoecklein told me if i was going to spend money on anything, make it on good brushes. there are many types and costs.

--a flat surface: canvas ( pre-stretched or stretch your own. wide variety of prices and quality), canvas paper, canvas board, masonite, wood, metal (for acrylics which are plasticky) foam core, etc.

--an easel or some way to support the surface. should be comfortable. painting is a physical activity.

--a pleasant place to paint. good light. relatively few distractions. i usually listen to music.

--an idea. ask yourself the question "what do i want or need to see?" 

--look at paintings. in books or on the internet.

top 3 rules:

1--avoid judging your work so much at first. have fun. 

2--do it on a regular basis. make it a habit. your brush technique and sense of color and composition will improve.

3--practice your sketching/drawing skills.

( frank often joined curious sets of objects in his paintings.

frank wolfe and i first met at the open mic at frank's (the old bull tavern,) in phoenixville. i had been the manager of the bar and had set the wheels in motion for it to happen, and pete benes was the driver. it started to catch some steam, and eventually frank came to scope it out and eventually perform, which was always a highlight. when we first met, you could feel the transfer of energy that frank came to master so well. we talked, and richard liston was with him. i had first met richard at rcb-the 3rd installment. i walked up on my wife, whom had given birth just three short months before, to find her bouncing off the ground and richard in a deep conversationalist trance. frank and my relationship would blossom over the course of the next years, including countless late night discussions in which we both listened equally as much as we spoke. one trip to the elmwood zoo with june and several in person appointments in dimly lit buildings. he was one of the brightest stars i've had the pleasure to share company with. over the course of our friendship, he had given me paintings unsigned, and specific ones that he deemed only for me to share with others. i commissioned  him to paint two pieces which have found residence in douglasville, the site of the red corner benefit, as well as the painting that found its way on his mass card, notice the red corner. he was my friend, my pen pal (one way) and a true american spirit--my world is that much more empty with his passing--yet the things he schooled me on are invaluable to the rest of my days.

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