After stretching the canvas on the wood, I gave it several coats of gesso. This is especially important as the media I was planning to use was oilstick.
For many years now I have painted a ground coat on a gessoed canvas in quinacridone violet. I think there is a luminescence to this colour and I don't mind if it shows through in a finished work, so I can leave edges rough if needs be.
In my current series my desire is to show more than simply the architecture of a place where I lived, but things associated with those places. Over the year that I haven't worked on the small canvases, I have kept them in mind. When I came across a Polaroid of an oil portrait I had painted of a woman who was briefly my room-mate in a shared flat in 1981, I thought to take that memory and do something with it. I have previously spoken of this place and its relation to the series here. The Polaroid of the painting is all that exists of the portrait of a room-mate whose name eludes me, though I remember quite a few things about her with fondness.
Room-Mate, oilstick on unstretched canvas, 41 cm x 34.5 cm, 2020