Let Me Arrange Your Life

16 Dec 2014

The grapes establish dominance in an otherwise bland still life painting setup.
The grapes establish dominance in an otherwise
bland still life painting setup.
Your still life! By following a few key guidelines when creating still life painting setups, you will be on your way to creating successful, dynamic paintings that really stand out. Here are a few pieces of advice to keep in mind when putting together your own compositions.

Establish dominance. A composition instantly becomes more cohesive if there is a visual hierarchy and one object commands more attention than others.

The effect should be subtle, but it is always important to have a focal point or dominate object in a still life setup to guide the viewer through a painting.

Hit repeat. An affordable and easy way to compose a still life drawing or painting is to feature one kind of object in many different positions.

For example take a dozen apples, and arrange them with one goal in mind: to place or position each apple in a different way. The same visual appeal doesn't come if you use varied items, which can sometimes lead to a composition that appears too busy.

A number of the same objects can
make a compelling still life.
Variety is created by using the oranges and peppers as a whole and in segments and slices.
Variety is created by using the oranges and
peppers as a whole and in segments and slices.
Variety with just one item. Master still life artists are always focused on how to make the most of their chosen objects, and one possible way to do so is to paint an object both whole and in parts. For example, paint an orange whole, peeled, and separated into segments.

For more tips and tricks on still life art, with top painting techniques, and unique perspectives from artists worldwide, get your subscription to The Artist's Magazine. Every issue will get you brainstorming your next artwork in no time. Enjoy!


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