It was a dull day yesterday so decided to do a quick sketch in the garden rather than go out.  Good practise in sorting out closely spaced tones. The warm colour in the foreground is burnt grass from the heatwave a few weeks ago.

I have been thinking whether I should varnish my paintings.  It appears not to be fashionable these days, maybe because the Impressionists tended not to varnish their paintings. There are practical considerations as well because you have to wait about an year until the paint is totally  dry before applying the varnish.  An alternative is to use an alkyd based painting such as Liquin or medium.   I have tried this in the past, mainly as they are fast drying.  I now rarely use them as I don’t like the rubbery feel they give to the paint, and cleaning brushes becomes much more difficult.

As an alternative I am going to try a tradition medium knowm as VTO, standing for varnish, turps and oil.  This is my standard medium of turp plus stand-oil, but with damar varnish added.  This is meant to give a slight gloss to the finished painting.  My bottle of varnish arrived yesterday so I can give it a go today.

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