As I've been showing the constant stream of visitors to my studio during the last couple of days,* I've been experimenting with technique.
[*This is a joke, just in case you need to be told.]
I reckon painting technique is an impenetrable jungle filled with the full range of deadly traps: spear traps, dart traps, poison traps, pit traps, dead weight traps, etc. If you venture in, you get lost. And you need to be very careful while stumbling around trying to find your way back out again, or you'll end up dead.
Just try putting 'oil painting technique' into a search engine! There are millions and millions of people with completely the wrong end of the stick.
Technique is not an end in itself. I can't stand attempts at virtuosity. I hate them with a deep, fundamental, abiding passion. I stand in front of one of them and am filled with blinding rage, with a very real physical desire to punch the grinning idiot face of the wanker who produced it. Fuck, it makes me so mad. Mad, I tell you! Mad!
But that's beside the point.
I reckon a good painting shares the same properties as a good mathematical proof – elegant simplicity. A good painting, like a good proof, does the most things with the fewest possible elements.
Theoretically, you shouldn't need any more colours than the three main ones the cave painters used. Combinations of them should do everything under the sun. But, of course, there's a difference between a theoretical ideal and mucky reality. I've added a couple of colours, not taken them away.
Hypocritical cunt that I am.