As you can see its a lovely painting of a hunting dog and his master getting ready to go hunting. J.M. Tracy, the artist who painted this work, was well known for his portrayals of hunting dogs and their masters. It was painted in the 1870's or 80's . Thank goodness the rip was not in the figures.
The canvas was extremely brittle so I had to use conditioner before relining it with a new canvas, patching then inpainting. It has taken quite a long time ,but it is such a lovely painting that it was a joy working on it.
This is how it looked partly finished. I am nearly finished now and just need to varnish it. One learns so much about painting when you have to restore really good paintings which hopefully will have an impact on my own painting.
It has occurred to me in the process of restoring some of the older paintings that the canvases used were perfect. The surface was so much smoother and without blemish than our modern ones are. Granted, they used white lead in their ground which is really better than our more modern substitutes albeit unhealthier. I would love to get my canvases at least closer to that quality than I have up to this point.I guess I will be experimenting with my grounds to see if I can get it closer to theirs.