Let me show you my best painting secret!
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Many artists looking to take up painting want to make quick progress. This is a natural desire since painting is an expression of your vision for a particular subject. It is frustrating when the result does not come close to the vision you had. At best this leads to beginners taking up painting lessons to make that step up in technique. Sadly many also give up declaring it a lost cause.
But there is a solution to the beginner’s slump with my best painting tutorials for beginners.
Want to know the best part?
The tutorials are Free. For now at least so take advantage of the offer below.
Recently I received this review from a happy painting student who worked through these tutorials:
Wow - this is exactly what I have needed. Concise steps to begin! I can paint fairly well, but I do ruin far too many canvases or sheets of watercolor paper because my beginning is not executed well.. No amount of "fixing"ever results in a good painting once it is begun poorly. I really appreciate this course and the step-by-step planning to make my art better. I have read about all the "rules"but when beginning to paint, I usually get stuck on one or two rules without incorporating all the elements at the same time. Thank you for presenting this course and I'm amazed that it was offered without cost. One of the most helpful to me. (Mary S)
Why is this the best painting tutorial for beginners?
The fact is that most beginners get some distance into their painting before finding themselves stuck. A lot of paint has been used already and hopes are high. When the alarm bells go off and you stare at your painting wondering what went wrong it is already too late. The problem usually happened before you even started painting.
You might be wondering:
What is he talking about and what does he know anyway?
The Secret Method
I must confess right now that I had the exact same issue when I started oil painting. Oils especially because I quickly ended up with muddy paint on the canvas. As I tried to fix the mistakes in vain the situation became worse. Not pretty! I though that the answers were secrets hidden from beginners. What was the missing ingredient?
The light bulb moment occurred when I studied artists like John F Carlsson and contemporary masters like Kevin MacPherson. The secret to paintings with vibrant color, strong composition and subjects that caught the eye lay in making a good start. That is it. There was no secret, but simply knowing the methods to use.
Is that it? But that is common sense you may say. Not a big secret at all. Sadly the few beginners that know the methods and tips that I am going tor reveal are few. It is art teacher who believe in learning the fundamentals that correct the bad habits that beginners get into. Teachers like the ones mentioned above who have influenced so many artists, including myself. And if I can learn it so can you. Ready to start?
Easy to Learn with Practice: Bold Values Have Power
It begins with learning to see like an artist. One important point here is that I want beginners to see the value relationships between shapes. Sorry if that does not sound glamorous. But when you start to see these relationships you will be amazed at how many subject you can paint confidently.
Our eye and natural hard-wiring is to see contrast between light and dark. Perhaps this was a way for early man to detect danger? When there is a strong contrast between light and dark shapes we cannot ignore it. Our attention is drawn to that contrast. Why not use this natural state in your paintings? Eliminate the unnecessary detail and look for those value relationships.
Pick Your Subject Carefully
Subject choice is key. Very often you may see a beautiful scene because other senses are working. Perhaps emotions too. Maybe you are at the beach looking out to see on a bright morning. The sounds of the waves, seagulls and smell of the sea all add to the sensory pleasure. Well and good, but that may not translate into a great painting.
Often a beginner takes a photo of the beach and sea then tries to paint that scene. The result is a rather dull series of horizontal shapes. Not at all what the artist experienced at the beach.
I do suggest the following approach:
1. Test Potential Compositions First
Now I am not saying that you must not paint what you love. A great emotional experience adds passion to a subject. But as a beginner you must give yourself a fighting chance.
Test and prepare by looking for different potential subjects. Try to frame various compositions and compare them. Look for variety on lines such as diagonals to add energy. Or intersecting horizontal and vertical lines.
2. Find Simple Mass Shapes
Look for strong value contrasts.
Look for a dominant mass shape too.
3. The Notan Sketch
I stunningly effective way to test your composition and values is to use a notan sketch. Notan is a Japanese word referring to the light-dark relationship. We see notan used effectively in most master paintings, because it creates such drama.
Notan sketches can be a small two value study using only a black marker pen on white paper. You can add a third value to get even closer to your composition arrangement.
4. Evaluate Your Sketches
After trying out a number of notan sketches you can evaluate which ones have the most pleasing and interesting design. That is the one to paint.
Now you have a powerful foundation to build on with your colors and brushwork. Even a very simple approach at this point will still produce a pleasing painting, because of the natural appeal of value and composition.
Want a Demonstration of this Method?
I have the entire process set out in step-by-step fashion for you. My short course How to Add Power to Your Painting Instantly covers this topic in detail. You can access the course now for Free. I am not sure how much longer it will be free, but my Artist and Collector’s Circle gets the course for free. Click here and sign up now.
The Truth is
Every method does require practice and dedication to become second nature. This is the aim. To make this process a quick and automatic process that you can do anytime. It makes painting with confidence so much easier to achieve. Does that sound good?
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