When I got back from Seattle last week, I found that a classmate in the June plein air workshop had arranged an exhibit of the work we did in the class. The exhibit is to be hung today (Monday), which meant I had to hustle. Getting paintings on hardboard ready to hang requires a frame. Unlike canvas on a stretcher, the boards can’t have a wire stretched between two screws across their backs. The screws have to be attached to something besides the painting itself — ie, a frame.

Fremont Bridge Stanchion, 2008, 12 x 16, oil on board

Having the work framed by a professional would cost more than the paintings are (currently) worth. So off I went to search for reasonably priced (under $20 a piece) frames for four 12 x 16 inch works.

I went to five stores to find the frames, although the ones I finally found were “natural” colored, meaning they made the paintings look as washed out as the frames. So I trotted to our local hardware store to get spray paint (which leaves no brush strokes). Did you know that in Portland, you have to show ID and sign off on a government form before you can buy spray paint? And then you have to pay for it?

Mt. Hood from Across the Gorge, 2008, 12 x 16″, oil on board

The paint, with its toulene and xylene and whatnot, had to be sprayed outside, so Jer moved the car out of the driveway, I put down a large drop cloth, layered newspaper over it, and then laid the frames out. I sprayed them — back, front, back, front, and front again. I detected lots of oogy smells, even though I held my breath until I got dizzy. I got a big pain in my behunkum from bending over and twisting around. And, although there were no brush strokes, there were, alas, paint drips.

The Fremont Bridge at NW 16th, 2008, 18 x 36″, oil on canvas

So there you go — we must labor to be beautiful and also suffer for our art. Shown here are 3 of the 5 pieces I’m taking down to the Pacific Northwest College of Art to be hung. I’m showing only 3 because I know I already showed the other two on an earlier blog. I probably showed these, also, but they have been touched up, redone, mucked over, and generally reworked since I last (may have) talked about them.

There probably won’t be enough hanging room for the last long one at the exhibit — it’s 3 feet in length. Nevertheless, I thought I’d take it with me, just in case. I think it’s my favorite piece, but that may be because I like grandiose and silly, and this has both attributes. –June

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3 Responses to Hustling

  1. Janet says:

    The paintings look good. I just hope you have some spray paint left for graffiti!


  2. June says:


    I couldn’t have answered your question this morning, but now I am fully (sort of) informed: The “exhibit” is in the Continuing Education hallway of PNCA (at 13th and Johnson). The hallway is found by turning right just as you enter the PNCA Commons and proceeding straight ahead (past the restrooms and telephones) past the sign that says “No public access” and continuing, following the salmon colored signs that point toward Room 128. At the end of one hallway, there’s a left turn — and voila! there’s the wallway on which all the paintings are aligned, one way or another.

    Actually the space is very tight and very out of sight, but Jef did a nice job of hanging the far too many paintings we all supplied. It’s kind of fun being in a salon-style show and certainly gives me a chance to practice my direction-giving skills. The show will be up until October 8 or so — the Continuing Ed folks are very nice and happy to have something look at while they drink their (really excellent) coffee.


  3. Gerrie says:

    June! You have been busy. Where is the exhibit?


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