Adding depth and texture to your paintings
If you like the texture of paintings that shows mounds and gullies of paint rather than the flatter surfaces typical of traditional tonal paintings, you may want to consider using modelling paste with your acrylics.
A similar product is available for oils, and is as easy to use. It is typically called impasto. Both of these products added to the paint will add a large amount of volume without taking away from the intensity of the colour. If it does change to another brand. Good quality ones which I have used are Winsor & Newton and Atelier.
The Fourth of Five Workshops with David Chen
This workshop followed on fromthe previous subject about “loosening up” your painting style. One thing that I have noticed over recent years is how edges can make or break a painting. The softer and “looser” result that you may be looking for has to do with how you approach painting edges, particualrly those on you main subject in relation to the surrounding composition.
There are a few different methods to help with creating interesting edges that also bind your subject to their surroundings, rather than having them look like cardboard cutouts.
Letting the Paint Do What it Does
Water colour painting can be a challenge. A lot of artists avoid it as it tends to do what it will on the paper. Interestingly, you can have control over your water coloours depending on how you use them, and really, some of the beautiful affects gained when allowing the paint and water to flow and merge can be a delightful happy accident or surprise.
The Third of Five Workshops with David Chen
When I began training with David Chen, my goal was to not only learn the principles of Modern Impressionist painting, but also to ‘loosen up’ my style a bit from what i saw as sometimes ‘stiff’ and contrived results. Sometimes the details become so important that I forgot to place the subject within and connected to the foreground and background in which it was situated.
Context is just as important as your focus and main subject, and when the subject began to look disjointed, unrelated or worse, like it has been stuck or pasted on top of an unrelated scene, is when I start wondering how this could have been avoided. My thought was that if I could put more planning and less effort into my paintings, that would be a start, but what kind of thought and what kind of effort?
Adding Texture and Volume to Your Paintings
If you have ever tried to create volume to your paintings by using your paints alone, you have probably encountered the same problems that I have in the past.
Titanium White vs Zinc White in Winsor & Newton Oils
You may have grown up like me, thinking that there is just white. What could possibly be the difference between whites in paints, surely they are all the same, but possibly with different pigments or mediums to blend them with.
In this quick blog, I will discuss the differences between the two most commonly used white in oil paints and how you can gain best use from each one.
Blacks in Oil Paints
When I first began painting I was told to avoid using black. It was a colour (or tone) that was to be avoided in preference for colours. It was never really explained to me, I just accepted that it was the case.
Without really examining paintings from the past, and how blacks have been used by master artists like Rembrandt, it could be easy t take the word for a well-meaning teacher or colleague about the use of black, but it is there in the paints, for a reason.
One of my students recently asked my about the use of masking fluid for water colour painting. This useful tool was introduced to me only a few years ago, and it is very helpful for keeping areas of your paper pristine for later washes or for the white to show through.
The accepted way of painting water colour is not to use white, but to allow the white of your paper to show through and around your colours. this method also helps the painting to look more ‘painterly’ and can create a sarkle and added dimension to the light.
If you are fairly new to oil paints, you may not have encountered transparency in the various colour yet. Even for those of us who have been painting for a while, remembering which colours are transparent usually means double checking the back of the tube.
To begin with I will talk about what I mean by transparency in oil paints.
I have been using acrylic paints for several years now and something that I have known about them but have not investigated is why some acrylics tend to change colour when they dry.
You may have had this experience before. You mix a nice bold colour and apply it to your painting, then when it is dry, the colour has lightened or changed in some way, becoming less vibrant for example.