“What a life lesson the sky has to offer us!”
Franck Bailleul paints on two types of support: Wood, which enables him to attain particularly delicate effects and possesses the advantage of holding better over time, and Linen canvas for initial sketches out of doors before continuing in the studio.
One of the artist’s idiosyncrasies is the frequent use of his fingers to touch up, mix colours, obtain a subtler mix of hues and to perfect shapes… He likes to feel the materials, the pigment sliding under his fingers, and through successive swirls, he achieves greater aesthetic fluidity. At times he also abstains from applying a base coat to the wood in order to play with the colour, in the manner of van Goyen, who used the same technique. The transparency of blue is revealed by the umber colour of the wood, giving depth.
As for linen canvas, Franck Bailleul first prepares it using a thin base, heavily diluted with turpentine so as to obtain an ivory or ochre tone. The he paints increasingly “greasily”, wiping frequently with a rag to rectify the colours and using an over-grainer or large brushes for shading and to improve the blending of colours. Occasionally, he scrapes with the knife to reveal the tinted threads of the canvas. He likes them to be either coarse, if he wishes to create a painting that is brutal, full of movement and strength, or very fine in order to bring out the elegance of the colours blended together in the case of more serene landscapes such as sunsets.