Oil Critique: "Still Life With Strawberries"

Still Life With Strawberries
2008, oil, 12 x 16.

This still life painting is very appealing because of the artist’s use of rich, harmonious color. The brushwork adds even more interest to the canvas. The artist has skillfully used both sharp and soft edges to help show the volume of the objects. The main problem is that the background does not showcase the painting’s strong design. I recommend simplifying the background on the left side of the painting in order to call more attention to the subject. A less complicated background will also add the feeling of space behind the still life arrangement.

Still Life With Strawberries with our
critic’s suggested alterations.

About the Critic
Dawn Whitelaw has studied painting with Scott Christensen, Cedric Egeli, Jim Pollard, and Everett Raymond Kinstler. In 2002 she received the Award of Excellence and Best of Show in an international competition sponsored by the Portrait Society of America, and she has exhibited her portrait, landscape, and still life paintings in juried shows organized by the Cumberland Society of Painters, the American Academy of Women Artists, and the Phoenix Historical Museum.

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About BrianRiley

Brian Riley is the managing editor for the American Artist family of titles (American Artist, Watercolor, Drawing & Workshop) and has been part of the AA team since 2003. He first became interested in art as a child, specifically drawing, but drifted away from the visual arts as he grew older, gravitating towards writing while in college. His position at AA has offered him the opportunity to reinvigorate his early passion and continue his education.  

One thought on “Oil Critique: "Still Life With Strawberries"

  1. I like the business of the original painting. I like the shapes in the background and don’t see it as a distraction….it compliments the richness of the vase and flowers.