The problem was a too-rough surface–my reds/yellows/pinks/oranges weren’t blending, and the shading just blobbed. I’d painted over the pleasant mountain scene originally contained by the frame so I could paint something I thought would go with the wonderful carving. But it was on plywood, very hard, very rough.
I was complaining about this recently to an artist friend who, off the cuff, suggested I cover the whole thing with a transparent medium and then paint on that. What a great idea! It gave me a more versatile surface, and although the painting never did look like the one in my head, I like it.
The picture, including the frame, measures 25″ x 16″.
Click on the image to enlarge it.