To contrast with painting on a white background, I decided to try painting on a black background. I have found this incredibly difficult. It is much easier to get a smooth, even surface with white paint. Black paint is much more troublesome. I’m not sure whether my attempts to date are successful or not. I am erring on the ‘not’ side but I’m not going to give up yet. I don’t think I have got the technique right and I am frustrated by the unevenness of the black paint. There is potential for atmosphere with these paintings, but the objects are, rather than standing out as on the white background, flattened. They are devoid of life. They are dead.
The black background is more ‘black’ than it appears in the photograph. The highlights of the object blend into the black in the actual painting. In fact, it is hard to identify this object.
As food is a theme, I decided to go for a traditional still-life subject: the bunch of grapes.
Painting grapes in black and white has the effect of completely killing them. They don’t look at all appetising. I’m not sure that this painting works, though, so further experimentation is needed.