Valerie Brennan on colour, paint and painting

Valerie Brennan: colour, paint and painting

“I use both oil and acrylic. I use acrylic on paper and love all gel mediums especially anything that thickens paint. I like the qualities of acrylic to work quickly on paper, it doesn’t feel precious so it’s a great way for me to experiment with mark making. I use Daler Rowney acrylic. With oil I work on wood or mdf panels. I order all my panels from a carpenter usually in batches of 6 or 8 of the same size. I love a flat surface with no or very little grain, one of the reasons I don’t like canvas and you can really bash a wood support around. I use Rembrandt and Van Gogh paint, the consistency is perfect without any solvents or oils, it’s so lush I just can’t help squeezing it straight from the tube onto the support. Here in Cyprus the large tubes of Titatium white are bizarrely the same price as some of the much lesser quality bran:-) ds like Pebeo, which yellows in a matter of months. Some colours I use from the tube like vermilion, emerald green, kings blue, cadmiun orange. My staple colours include indigo, van dyke brown, venetian red, paynes gray, madder reds, cobalt greens and tourqise and a cad yellow. I need white in bulk. I mix a lot of pink on a palette but mostly do the mixing on the surface itself. I get excited in the art shop and when I can I will buy a new colour like buff titanium. Recently there was sale on some Artists Winsor and Newton colours, all very earthy and not what I would usually buy but I ended loving them, the chrome green in particular. I have been using enamel spray paint too lately, I started working a bit larger and it’s not expensive, I get it at the DIY, I will use any florescent or silver, black and white. It’s great to obliterate whilst keeping the texture of the thicker brush work underneath. I try to never scrape paint off when things go wrong, I like to keep all the history of the image right there on the surface, my work became very thick because of it for a while not having the patience to let I dry I just put more paint on. The tools I use are more DIY shop than art shop. I use cheap brushes, a butter knife and a squeegee like object which is actually for cleaning window and a paint scraper. I start out by applying a thin layer of pure colour over the entire surface with my squeegee and go from there.” ~ Valerie Brennan

Valerie’s paintings will feature in: A dream within a dream @ Bankley Studios & Gallery, Private View 15/05/2014 6-9pm, Saturday / 12.30 – 17.30.