Tag: acrylic paints

Tanglewood Underpinnings (II)

A paintings is rather like rocket ship – different stages as it takes off.

I did this in yesterday afternoon’s class, trying to focus on both light and dark, warm and cool. Acrylics seem like a rather unforgiving medium insofar as they dry quickly and can have very hard edges. That makes it a bit of a challenge for someone like me who prefers blending and mushing painting. It took me a bit to figure out how to do it.

The fun thing about an art class is the class members and seeing how they paint. Perceptions and styles are all so individualistic. Naturally you prefer this to that, but admiration for an individual’s work doesn’t mean you have to copy them. Add to this, people are so full of information and stories, and this adds to the value of their art – you get to know them.

So, this may be put off for a few days as I have some other things I need to do – and it never hurts to take a break. I hope I don’t start more than one painting at a time, though, as then I will fall into my habit of UFOs lying around, sobbing for attention.

The Forest Track

Today is my fifth painting with acrylics. I felt confident enough to choose a more complex subject, using (of course) another YouTube video. I am learning a lot by following videos, especially ones that suggest brushes and colors, as well as explain techniques.

This painting is done on Fredrix canvas pad paper, 11×14. The canvas, though already gessoed, was gessoed by me. I like that step and feel it is a good way to begin a painting, much like grinding ink prior to doing sumi-e. There is a meditative element to it.

Murray Stewart, whose video I followed, painted his underlying canvas with burnt sienna. I used red ochre and found that the color is just yummy! I live where red soil is known, so it was like seeing an old friend. That said, from there I pretty much followed through the video. About half way, Stewart mentions that the basic work was done, and details were what were needed to finish the painting. I agreed, but watched through to the end.

I have been using titanium white for mixing colors, but decided to use zinc white, as I do with gouache. For gouache, and mixing colors, it is great, but the titanium is a much better choice for mixing colors in acrylics. I am not quite sure where I will use zinc white in acrylics, but I am sure I can do some research.

This video presented me with a lot of material I enjoyed learning: making sun beams, using a fan brush for foliage, dark against light and light and against light effects. More, too, simply by doing. While painting, I found that dipping my brush in water prior to picking up paint made for better painting. The brush wasn’t sopping, and the water in the brush gave enough moisture to allow pure pigment to be spread around. I also found that this helped with glazes.

So, here is Stewart’s video – he did a good job, and he is pretty darn funny, too!