Sometimes a painting sticks around too long. Sometimes it hangs on a wall and doesn't find a home and makes it's way back to the studio and then we have a talk, this painting and I. It's a short talk, and it's not audible. I'm sure it catches the painting unaware (just as I am sure this post makes me sound crazy because a painting is an inanimate object, or this makes you think I'm like one of those artists, whoever they might be in your life) as I am usually in the middle of some benign task like digging for paints in my box, or putting on my apron or refilling my mug of tea. Suddenly the offending piece is up on the easel and a brush full of red oxide (my favorite base color) comes out and just like that, that particular painting becomes a memory. There are 2 such canvases in the studio right now. One of them is a memory, the other is about to be. This happens a few times a year. I like to recycle canvas. There are a fair number of two-for's out there, and a few three-for's. Perhaps the owners know, maybe they don't. If they look carefully they might be able to see another title was erased from the back of the canvas. Maybe they'll notice an extra layer showing off it's texture on the surface but is somehow unrelated to the painting they see....and they can't make sense why.
I noticed something tonight about this particular two-for; the painting that now resides underneath was about water, as is it's new outline. The recycled canvases usually end up with a similar themed piece on them. Maybe it's a subconscious thing. I couldn't tell you. The outline I just finished came from one of my favorite instax photos on my first east coast trip last summer, when Jen and I were aboard the Princess of Acadia (or her boat as she affectionately calls it) on our way from Saint John, NB to Digby, NS.
It's a bit of a ferry-tale ending. Ba-dum-dum.