Day 2 went very well as I continue to refine this. It looks bad in photographs, my work always looks much better in real life. Decided upon a dark background also as opposed to an antique fabric curtain which was my original idea.
So, I'll also explain a little bit more about my canvas company which I'm starting. This self portrait is being painted on an oil ground which I prepared; the surface greatly enhances the luminosity of the oil paint. That is why I started EAS Custom Canvas, to create high quality custom made oil grounds for everyone to try.
The canvas making process is something which I have been fascinated with for a long time now. I've always found the look and feel of linen canvas tacked to stretcher bars to be extremely beautiful. The shocking thing is that I can't find any company which makes custom made oil ground canvases the way they were made in the 19th century. Aside, from titanium white being used instead of lead, the process is directly the same as has been used since the French Academy.
I want to help artists create better oil paintings by rejecting modern acrylic 'gesso' canvases and replacing them with oil grounds. If you've never tried an oil ground, I highly recommend you do. I'm not a big believer in having a 'magic brush' or special medium, but the canvas will make a big difference in your oil painting.