Oil Painting

Oil Painting: Centuries Old & Still Going Strong

Oil painting dates back for centuries and is an incredibly far-reaching artistic practice. The earliest discovery of its usage goes as far back as the fifth century A.D. to the Bamian Valley of Afghanistan, where Indian and Chinese artists created hundreds of paintings in the nexus of caves there.

. Bal du moulin de la Galette by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, oil on canvas, 1876.
Bal du moulin de la Galette
by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, oil on canvas, 1876.

But oil painting art did not achieve widespread prominence and usage until it arrived in Northern Europe in the 15th century. Netherlandish artist Jan Van Eyck is most often credited with "discovering" the practice, having experimented with oil painting techniques in his wood panel works, including his famed Arnolfini wedding portrait. Eventually oil painting swept through the rest of Europe, replacing tempera painting as the most prominent medium of choice and becoming the painting practice most closely associated with the art of the High Renaissance.

What initially made oil painting art so appealing was the brightness and richness of its colors. What has allowed it to stand the test of time is its adaptability to an artist's whims and requirements. For instance, Renaissance oil painting artists tended to use oil paints in layers, working fat over lean (which means adding more oil to the pigment as you go through each successive layer to allow for proper drying or curing so the final surface of the painting won't crack) and dark to light. This is usually called indirect painting and allows an artist to build up the painting surface from toned underpainting to finishing glazes.

During the Impressionist period, much of that changed. Oil pigments were put into tubes and artists were free to move outdoors, where they often painted "wet into wet," mixing paint directly on the surface and not waiting for a layer of paint to dry before going into the painting again. Nowadays artists often combine one or both of these methods in their oil art.

And oil painting's further appeal lies in the fact that its translucence, sheen, and thickness can all be adjusted. It can also be used with waxes, resins, and varnishes, proving that the process and possibilities inherent in fine art oil painting are as varied and faceted as the artwork that has been made with over the centuries. 


How to Oil Paint: Brushes, Brushwork 101, and Beyond

Oil painting brushes come in a variety of types and sizes.
.
Oil painting brushes come in a
variety of types and sizes.

.

Our Oil Painting Picks


The latest American Artist magazine issue!

Alla Prima Portraiture, an art instructional DVD with Rose Frantzen

Mastering Sketching: A Complete Course in 40 Lessons

Modern Mixed Media
with Marshall Arisman

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Buy oil painting brushes with bristles that are firm and don't bend too sharply over the ferrule, and watch for loose or splayed hairs. In terms of types of brushes, flat brushes are often used when applying large areas of oil on canvas. Filberts soften edges; brights are short flat brushes and usually used when figuring out how to texture the surface of a painting for bold impasto effects. Round brushes are versatile and can be used almost anywhere and on anything during the painting process. Fan brushes take after their name and feather away brushstrokes and soften tone gradations.

You can approach oil painting brushwork in a number of ways. You can apply the paint in thin layers, working fat over lean. The key to success is to apply paint that contains more oil with every successive layer. Impasto techniques are quite different. You can apply oil paint straight from the tube, working with a brush or a palette knife. To heighten the textural effects on the surface of the painting, you can also try mixing the paint with sand or sawdust.

For subtle textures and soft transitions, scumble your paint, whereby you apply a thin film of dry (no oil added) paint to a dry surface. This will give a painting a delicate mist of color, revealing the underpainting color and optically merging it with the scumble layer. To scumble, start with an old or worn brush and scrub the surface of the painting freely and in any direction that suits the nature of painting. 

 

Learn Oil Painting: Color Temperature & Color Charts

. Overcast Roses by Timothy Thies, 2005, oil painting, 10 x 12.
Overcast Roses by Timothy Thies, 2005,
oil painting, 10 x 12.
Hunky Dory by Timothy Thies, 2005, oil painting, 11 x 14.
Hunky Dory by Timothy Thies, 2005,
oil painting, 11 x 14.

Landscape artist Timothy R. Thies teaches his oil painting workshop students how to capture the elusive and nuanced temperatures of light and shadow in their work.

Cool Light, Warm Shadows
"Overcast Roses illustrates the principle of cool light and warm shadows," said Thies. "What I want to convey here is that every object in the light has been painted with cool colors--the coolness being the light temperature of an overcast day. All of the shadow areas in this painting are painted in warmer colors, especially in comparison to what surrounds them. Color temperature is always about comparing two colors next to each other. For instance, in this painting, the colors in the light areas are cooler in comparison to the colors in the shadow areas.

Warm Light, Cool Shadows
"In Hunky Dory, we have just the opposite," Thies continued. "You still want to contrast all the shapes in your painting that are in the light of a sunny day to those in the shadows. On a sunny day, as in Hunky Dory, all the color notes in the light are warmer than those in the shadows--the shadows being predominantly cooler. Also, on a sunny day you produce paintings that have lighter, brighter colors and more contrast than in paintings done under cool light or overcast conditions. Compare the paintings side by side. The overcast painting has very subtle color changes. In Hunky Dory, the sunny-day painting, you can see more distinct color changes and a wider range of value changes. Most artists prefer the sunny-day paintings because the color changes are more obvious and the overcast paintings can appear to be very gray and unappealing. If you take a closer look, however, you will begin to see the subtle color shifts of the cool light and warmer shadow concepts, very similar to painting under north-light conditions in a studio. By painting in both lighting conditions, you will add variety to your finished paintings."

Color Chart Art
A few weeks before a workshop, Thies sends each of his students a packet of information about how to make color charts before arriving for the three-day event. He encourages the artists to complete the color charts to better understand not only the colors they were using but also how they interact with one another. "How many times have you looked at an object in nature and thought, 'What color is that and how do I mix it?'" Thies asked in his letter to students. "By mixing two colors plus white from your palette, you will begin to learn and then memorize color mixtures that are quite beautiful. What could be more satisfying and fun?"

Thies' color charts.
Thies' color charts.
Each color chart focuses on a dominant color--sap green, for example--and how it interacts with each of the other colors on a palette. Thies' charts--which he recommends painting on canvas panels, one square inch for each color block, sectioned off with 1/8" white graphic arts tape--are always five horizontal rows deep, with the top row always the darkest value and the bottom row always the lightest. The number of vertical columns depends on the number of colors experimented with--ideally, enough to accommodate the number of colors on the palette. The horizontal color rows are composed of mixtures of each color on the palette combined in varying percentages with the dominant color.

The first column of paint in every chart is the dominant hue mixed with only white. Begin by painting Box 5--the top box--right out of the tube so it is the solid dominant color. Next, mix the dominant color with a lot of white, so the mixture is only slightly darker than white. That mixture goes in Box 1 at the bottom of the chart. Now Box 5 and Box 1 are complete. Box 3 is an even mixture of white and the dominant color--say, sap green. Boxes 2 and 4 are in between the values of 1 and 3 and 3 and 5, respectively. Squinting at the column should reveal an even gradation of colors from top to bottom. Now mix colors for column two.

The rest of the columns are combinations of the dominant color with other colors, for instance sap green with ultramarine deep, sap green with cobalt blue light, sap green with viridian, and so on. "There is no perfect way to paint color charts," Thies reminded the students, "just be patient with yourself. It's a lengthy process, but the results are beautiful and very satisfying."

Source: From an article by Edith Zimmerman, Fall 2006 issue of Workshop


Top Ten Oil Painting Tips

. The Cove by Randall Sexton, oil on canvas, 40 x 30, 2010.
The Cove by Randall Sexton,
oil on canvas, 40 x 30, 2010.

Artist Randall Sexton has inspired countless students with his oil painting lessons. Here are a few of his favorite oil painting tips sure to trigger best practices in your art.

  1. Keep your oil painting palette organized with the paints laid out the same way each time you work.
  2. Premix piles of paint that represent the big "puzzle pieces" or large masses of your composition, starting with the colors you know and working toward the ones you don't.
  3. Be aware of changes in color at the edges of shapes, which will give your shapes form and volume.
  4. If you want to see shapes flatly, close one eye.
  5. Make color relationships on your palette first, and then try test spots on your canvas.
  6. Work on very small panels on location to experiment with color rather than on your final surface.
  7. Make color charts that relate the various colors on your palette.
  8. Stick to a limited palette.
  9. Keep one hand on the wheel, glance at the mirror, and coast. In other words, relax!
  10. To judge both value and color, step back from your painting to make final judgments.

Source: From an article written by Steve Doherty, Fall 2006 issue of Workshop.

 

Building a Center of Interest in an Oil Painting

. House at Arroyo Jacona by Doug Higgins, 2006, oil painting, 18 x 24
House at Arroyo Jacona by Doug Higgins,
2006, oil painting, 18 x 24.

Call it the focus, the focal point, or the center of interest. For Doug Higgins, it's a crucial part of planning his paintings. Once a scene strikes him and he has a clear image of the composition in his mind, he sets up his easel but Higgins says he never accepts nature as she comes. "I know I can change the scene--make things up, eliminate some things, simplify others, move elements, brighten or neutralize colors--to serve the idea of the painting," he says. "I carefully balance and design the elements. My goal is simplicity. Complexity is easy--anyone can achieve that through thoughtless copying of details. You need intelligent strategies to keep it simple."

Because Higgins begins with an image of a painting in his mind, he has no need for thumbnail sketches. His first considerations are establishing the focal point, locating the horizon line, and placing the largest masses. "A painting is not a collection of parts, but a construction," he says. "I establish masses early on, stick to those decisions, and retain those masses by using close values."

Higgins next sketches in the main elements with a small, soft brush. The next step is applying a thin turpentine wash with a big brush using transparent colors--alizarin crimson, burnt sienna, ultramarine blue, and viridian for the shadows and warm local colors in the light areas--to establish the major shapes. With this step done, the artist wipes down his board with a paper towel, creating an interesting variety of colors. Using thicker paints, he begins with the focal point, completing that before moving on to other areas. By establishing his lightest light, darkest dark, and highest level of detail and contrast in the center of interest, he sets standards by which to judge the subordinate parts of the painting.

Because the eye is attracted by contrast, Higgins uses the strongest contrast in values, colors, edges, textures, and degree of detail in his center of interest. Linear elements lead the viewer's eye toward the focal point. To keep the viewer from being distracted by the foreground he simplifies and abstracts that area. Sometimes Higgins makes figures the secondary focus. The artist also uses secondary focal points to balance the oil painting and avoid weighing down one part of the image.

Source: From an article for Artist Daily written by Linda S. Price

 

Oil Painting Gallery

Take a look at a handful of the oil painting offerings that have been created by some of the most famed and lauded artists throughout history, and learn a little bit about why each painting is worth a further look.

 

The Arnolfini Wedding Portrait by Jan Van Eyck, oil on panel, 1434 Mona Lisa by Leonardo, oil on panel, 1503-06

The Arnolfini Wedding Portrait by Jan Van Eyck, oil
on panel, 1434: The vivid colors in this work are an
incredible celebration of what oil painting can do,
and the multiple associations and meanings of
objects in the work--from the mirror, dog, candle,
and cherries on the window sill to the figures' joined
hands--give rich symbolism and multiple
interpretations to the work.

Mona Lisa by Leonardo, oil on panel, 1503-06:
An enigmatic portrait that displays Leonardo's
famed gift for composition, this painting's
notoriety throughout history has led it to be
stolen, recovered, merchandized, identified with
at least ten sitters, and reproduced in at least

300 paintings and 2,000 advertisements.
 

The Blue Boy by Thomas Gainsborough, oil on canvas, 1770 The Raft of the Medusa by Theodore Gericault, oil on canvas, 1819
The Blue Boy by Thomas Gainsborough, oil on
canvas, 1770: This is the artist's most famous work
and served as an homage to the Flemish Baroque
artist Anthony Van Dyck, which is why the figure is
dressed in a costume that would have been worn
some 140 years prior to when the work was done. 

The Raft of the Medusa by Theodore Gericault, oil on canvas, 1819:
An emblem of French Romanticism, this incredibly large fine art oil
painting is based on the horrific aftermath of an 1816 shipwreck
and also serves as an example of how complex a composition can
be--two overlapping pyramids direct the viewer's eye in, around,
and through the work. (Above, a detail of the work.)


Resources


Featured product:
Visual Concepts in Still Life with Sherrie McGraw

Painting Light: The Cape School Method with Camille Przewordek

Oil Portrait - Erin by Daniel Greene

American Artist Guide to Painting Techniques

Oil Painting Techniques You Can Try Today


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  • Darrell Brown paints simple, seemingly timeless "portraits" of fruits and vegetables. A few days ago a reader came to me with a good point: If an artist running a workshop can talk about the philosophy behind his or her oil painting art, all
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  • Painting outdoors in winter can be an extreme sport. The snow, the wind, the cold—it takes a certain kind of artist to paint a winter landscape while in a winter landscape. The first time I attempted this was a couple of years ago when I was living in Connecticut. Two feet of snow had fallen the
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  • If you haven't had an opportunity to see the works of Anders Zorn in person, you might want to get a copy of the exhibition catalog for a show of his work at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco. The book, Anders Zorn: Sweden's Master Painter
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  • The Evening Show by Clyde Aspevig, oil painting, 40 x 36. You can often tell a painting that was painted en plein air from one that wasn’t. There is an immediacy to the light and atmosphere depicted in plein air paintings that isn’t always
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  • During this time of year I like to reflect upon and appreciate all the blessings in my life (...also eat a lot of carbs and watch TV marathons). But lately I've been dwelling on how lucky we are to have so much amazing art created and inspired by
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  • It has been a while since I have blogged. Life has gotten in the way of drawing and painting, as we all know it can do. But now that I 'm back at it, I want to share what I am doing, and what I am seeing of others' work as well. One of the things
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  • The Remains by Joe Gyurcsak, 2007, oil painting, 24 x 24. If I start my morning with a bit of artistic inspiration, it really carries me through the whole day, just like a wholesome breakfast does! And today is a very good day because I was able to begin
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  • Sharing studio space allows artists to come together for collaborations, or work side by side on personal projects. I’ve never shared a studio or work space, except for when I’ve been in the classroom. Which is weird because I’m social
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  • There are several characteristics that go into the success of a great portrait painting. Whether it's good drawing, proper value relationships or a delicate balance of warm and cool temperature changes within the flesh tones, it's not uncommon
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  • Drawing a face is a little like reading a map. And no, not the cool Indiana Jones map where the red line draws itself to the destination and ‘X’ marks the spot. I wish! It is more that when learning how to draw people , there are a few “signposts” on the face and rules of thumb
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  • Accurately forecasting what the weather will be like on any given day is often unpredictable, leaving us at the mercy of factors that are beyond our control. Because of this, meteorologists pay close attention to the ever changing weather patterns that
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  • Noelle with a Black Dress by Ron Hicks, 2007, oil, 20 x 16. Collection Gallery 1261, Denver, Colorado. I think photography has altered the way we judge the painted portrait. With the ability to capture a photographic likeness—from the details of
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  • Early Morning by Keith McCulloch, 12 x 16, oil painting. Artist Daily Member Spotlight: Keith B. McCulloch When I first saw Keith McCulloch's paintings, I took a deep breath. It was an involuntary reaction but a telling one—the airy, openness
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  • During this time of the year, as acts of generosity and appreciation abound, I’m drawn to the works of the painters and draftsmen of the Ashcan School, which thrived during the early 20th century. This group of artists—among them Robert Henri, Everett Shinn, John French Sloan, and William
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  • It is well known that the rise of Impressionism was due in part to the new developments in paint chemistry which created brighter, more stable colors previously unavailable for oil painting . View of Arles with Irises by Vincent van Gogh, oil painting
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  • The Girl with the Wineglass by Johannes Vermeer, 1659. We are in a social time of the year. Holiday parties, galas, end-of-the-year revelries—there are celebrations galore. What’s great about such occasions for artists, in addition to seeing
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  • I used to think so romantically about Monet, Pissarro, and the other Impressionists. Not romantic like Manet is so dreamy; romantic as in idealizing this particular group of painters—thinking they stepped outside of their studios and, snap, Impressionism just happened. Veneration can sometimes
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  • The Lantern Bearers by Maxfield Parrish, 1908, oil on canvas board, 40 x 32. I have a confession to make: I've never glazed an oil painting. The process intimidates me a bit—creating luminosity and an inner glow on canvas is no easy feat—and
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  • There is an enormous amount of information out there on the various methods for applying oil paint to canvas, but it seems to boil down to three schools of thought: thin painting, thick painting, or a combination of the two. The Thins, Thicks and Combiners
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  • How many times do we promise ourselves that we'll do something "one day", both in everyday life and our art, yet somehow never find the time? But if you make a list of these and pick one to do each month, and are willing to grab an opportunity
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  • The process of underpainting has such a buttoned-up reputation as an oil painting technique. If it were cast in a movie, it would be the uptight, by-the-book stickler that no one wants to hangout with. That’s because the process of underpainting
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  • I knew we were in trouble when I opened the car door and brown water started flooded in. ‘Shut the door!' shouted Vanessa. "Mon Dieu, Mon Dieu!" muttered our French driver, holding her head in her hands. The car had stalled. The small
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  • I'm sure many of you are aware of the Spanish living legend Antonio López García, but I'm ashamed to say I was not familiar with his artwork until recently. And as with any new discovery, once you become aware of a new person, place
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  • Fantasy art guru and top-notch artist James Gurney is a font of knowledge when it comes to so many aspects of drawing and painting . Whether you are into fantasy images or tend toward more realist compositions, Gurney has techniques and methods dealing
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  • I have found that toning my support, whether canvas or paper or board, is something I often do now. I’m showing two works to illustrate the difference between toning and not toning.
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  • Jacqueline Kamin paints with a sculptural sensibility that isn’t at all foreign to her practice. Earlier in her career she spent time as a bronze bust sculptor. “Working with sculpture is a lot of fun,” Kamin says. “It is very tactile and organic, but it takes a toll physically
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  • Somewhere out there, maybe even as you read this, a group of hungry, dedicated artists are taking a plein-air painting workshop. And at some point during this workshop—perhaps right at this very moment—one of those aspiring artists will ask the classic question voiced at least once in every
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  • Whiskey Creek (Spring) By Kate Ha rding, 2008, found leather garments, thread, grommets, and steel hooks, 54 x 35. One of the things I love about the artistic process is that we all share the need to put our creative energy into practice, we do it in so many different ways, and yet we usually have a
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  • Oak in the Snow by Caspar David Friedrich, 1825, oil, 44 x 34.5 cm, Wallraf-Richartz Museum, Cologne, Germany. I think all landscape artists and plein air painters have a touch of the romantic in them. It doesn’t really matter what type of landscape
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  • When I’m landscape painting I’m always drawn to the curious, in-between places where the outdoors and indoors meet. This could be an ivy-smothered barn that almost looks like it is disappearing into the landscape, or an ocean view from an open window. The places where architecture and the
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  • Because it’s hardly ever really blue. Think of Turner’s skies or even Monet’s—they are multifaceted and carry the hum of several colors. As many of us transition from painting outdoors to inside the studio, we can sometimes make assumptions and take certain things for granted
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  • Alaska-born artist Steven Huston knows that when there's no mammoth sports arena or cheering crowds, an athlete on the field of play can easily turn into an artist's ideal model. Even without motion, an athletic figure still possesses an interesting pose, physical awareness, and conceptual power
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  • We are not unusual in our undying admiration for Sargent's painting style and abilities. What is less well known about him was his unflagging generosity and support of other artists, both financially, when needed, and in time spent teaching his painting
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  • Artists are the sharpest of observers, attuned to a person's passing gesture or the play of light and shadow on a building façade—but not everything that catches our eye is a painting waiting to happen. For Utah watercolorist Joseph Alleman , the stories that hold his interest are reflections
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  • A few of my artistic heroes get worse than no respect. They get anonymity. Jacques le Moyne de Morgues, Philip Gidley King, James Cook, Joseph Frederick Wallet Des Barres, John James Audubon—all were artistic adventurers, and most of them are virtually unknown.
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  • They say when infants (or young children) fall down, they look up to their mother or father, to see how she or he reacts. More often than not, a parent will have an anxious and frightened facial expression--"Oh no, my baby is hurt!"--which,
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  • As an artist who has painted the natural world for over 20 years, Adam Straus has a complicated connection to his environment. In the 1990s, he painted Oil Slicks , a series of paintings that referenced the oil spills that happened at the time, and the relevancy of these paintings has been asserted again
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  • With summer in full swing, I've been spending as much time as possible outdoors, going to concerts and plays, walking from place to place when I do my errands, and just finding every excuse for an outdoor excursion. Landscape painting is another perk of the season. There's something invigorating
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  • I don’t have pets but I really love drawing animals because it allows me to focus on a subject matter that is totally different from what I’m used to. Animals’ bodies vary dramatically from bird to reptile to mammal, and that means I
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  • Robert Johnson strikes the perfect balance between master artist and down-to-earth mentor, supporting his students while pushing them to create the best works that they can. At a recent three-day workshop sponsored by The Art League School in Alexandria, Virginia, Johnson led students through the stages
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  • The best painters understand that they work to create an illusion. The sleight of hand that comes along with realist painting can be especially compelling when it hides in plain sight—when artists take on subjects that are almost diametrically opposed to the flat surface of their canvases and make
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  • Gaining exposure and recognition for one’s work starts with putting finished pieces in the public and critical eye. This can mean participating in local community shows or full-fledged exhibitions, entering competitions, and hanging pieces in galleries. It is an exciting prospect, but it can also
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  • Sunset over the Catskills by James Gurney, oil painting. If I want to excel in my craft and become any kind of decent realist painter, the two aspects of oil painting that I need to focus on are color and light. Perfecting the two, together, will allow
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  • A still life changed my life?! It sounds corny, but it’s a little bit true! It was Francisco de Zurbarán’s Still Life with Lemons, Oranges and a Rose . He was a Spanish Baroque painter and I was a freshman searching for a major. Bliss and art history degrees followed.
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  • Ann and I have been reading Marc Simpson's 2008 book, Like Breath on Glass: Whistler, Inness and the Art of Painting Softly , published on the occasion of the exhibition of the same name at the Clark Art Institute. It has provoked lively studio discussions
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  • The works of landscape painter George Inness (1825-1894) were both revered and dismissed in his lifetime. Although he was considered one of the leading and most influential artists of his time, his work eventually became controversial as he relentlessly
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  • It is the time of year when we find great joy and inspiration in our gardens. We love to watch our flower gardens slowly unfold through the spring and seemingly explode with the summer sun into a riot of colors, shapes and textures all demanding our attention
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  • Clouds Moving , 1999-2009, oil on canvas, 31 1/4 x 37 1/2, by Bernard Chaet. Courtesy David Findlay Jr Fine Art. It’s the materiality—or, for many, that’s at least part of it. The buttery rich feel of oil paint moving across the surface
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  • We have been enjoying the book, The Artist's Eyes: Vision and the History of Art , by ophthalmologists Michael Marmor and James G. Ravine. One of our favorites among the many fascinating subjects they cover, is the eerie phenomenon or illusion in
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  • The centerpiece painting for my show "Venus Apocalypse" at Dacia Gallery this June is the eponymous painting shown here. This painting was the third in a set of Venuses. I shared about the first two, "Sleeping Venus" and "Venus
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  • George Carlson and Boy with Eagle by David A. Leffel, 1991, oil, 42 x 34. I’ve always prided myself on learning good technique when faced with any new skill, and doing this has definitely made a difference. That goes for when I was learning to dance
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  • Figurative realism and allegory go hand in hand. Allegories—complex narratives built on layers of symbolism—are what allow works by Caravaggio, Titian, Bernini, Dürer, and Vermeer to carry resonance and remain intriguing centuries after they were created. Even though the power of storytelling
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  • For the past year, I have been developing new work for my upcoming show at Dacia Gallery in NYC. Dacia is a small gallery on the Lower East Side, and the intimate size gave me the opportunity to put together a body of work with a narrowly focused theme
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  • When I went away to college I took a token from each of my loved ones. There was a Frankie Laine CD from my dad, a grungy Pearl Jam T-shirt from my brother, and a charcoal portrait of my mom that was made on the boardwalk of Virginia Beach when she was
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  • Each day, people from all over the globe travel to Paris to visit the most famous oil painting in the world, the Mona Lisa . Many are just curious, and want to see the real thing for themselves. Some admire the famous enigmatic smile, the perfect proportions
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  • We read an interesting article recently in The New York Times titled, " Why We Love Beautiful Things " in which the architect and author, Lance Hosey, wrote about some of the latest research findings and his opinions on the subject. Peony Bouquet
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  • Shaw's Cove by Ray Roberts, 2003, oil, 12 x 16. When I was in college, I read a lot of Romantic poetry, and what still sticks in my mind is all the water imagery those writers used. For them, water was a stand-in for life, transcendence, and the creative impulse. With such inherent possibilities
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  • Almost any artist will tell you that there's a certain appeal to working outdoors that can't be found anywhere else. With spring in full swing, many of us have left our studios for our porches, backyards, and beyond. To celebrate the season and all of the landscape art being made, here are 10
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  • I’ve spent way too much time in murky classrooms looking at slides, slides, and more slides. I’m convinced that the entire academic field of art history would grind to a halt without projectors, carousels, and slides. But what is weird about looking at so many images is that I find myself
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  • Painting the people and places one sees every day can be either a mind-numbing trial or an impetus for creativity that just happens to be homeward bound. For New Jersey-based artist Michael de Brito--who has spent the last several years painting family members and friends in familiar surroundings, such
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  • It feels right to talk about color and art during this time of the year, when flowers are blooming, trees are budding, and skies are (mostly) blue. After months of dull-colored scenery, everything seems to be flourishing wherever I look, which makes me
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  • I just finished a very interesting commission. I've shared my oil painting, Pandora , on Artist Daily before. It was one of the central paintings from my 2012 exhibit at Forbes Gallery. I got a lot of positive feedback on that painting--and then got
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  • When my Norwegian Artist, Steve Henderson, gives an oil painting workshop, one of his favorite aspects -- as well as that of his students -- is when participants bring in their artwork for Steve to look at and make comments about. "I could spend
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  • One of the best conversations I’ve had about art wasn’t with an artist. It wasn’t with an art historian, curator, or gallery owner, either. It was with a mechanical engineer. We went from discussing his latest design project to the artfulness of historical blueprints to Leonardo’s
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  • When I walk through a museum or gallery, there are certain paintings that I breeze past and others that always draw me in. Self-portraits definitely fall into the latter category. I’m always intrigued by how artists choose to represent themselves and perpetuate their own personal mythologies. True
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  • Friends and family are wonderful, but when it comes to getting an honest, straightforward statement from them about what your fine art oil painting really, really looks like -- well, they're just so incredibly . . . nice. And nice doesn't help
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  • The very idea of me creating a "masterpiece" is hilarious. I mean, I'm still trying to figure out how to paint! But the fact is that by learning oil-painting techniques and absorbing all of the information and advice from oil-painting artists
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  • When Steve, the Norwegian Artist , was a young boy, his parents sought out a local artist in his town and arranged painting instruction lessons -- people do this all the time with the piano, and yet when it comes to art, it seems so . . . impossible.
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  • We are not alone as artists in our passion for gardens. We follow in the footsteps of several rather impressive artists throughout history. Our personal gardens are designed for plein air painting and inspire us in every season. But this year, we have
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  • Discovering David Ligare's work was a great gift. Adept in every genre, he is master of composition, light, and color. With a classical sensibility and an ardent love of antique Greek and Roman culture, he is simply brilliant, and his work is beyond
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  • What makes an object look three-dimensional? We use a variety of cues to give us this information: light and shadow, contrast, pattern, color, texture, scale, temperature and value, usually in combinations. Our ability to measure these different parameters
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  • Especially since the mid-1800s, many artists have stressed color over other elements in painting. The Impressionists are notable examples. Monet, for instance, explored how to paint light and its effects on the colorful scenes he saw in his mind's
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  • So excited about the April issue of The Artist's Magazine ! We first saw the painting now on the cover of our April issue, Aine, Death Valley (oil painting, 20 x 30) when we were judging entries in The Artist's Magazine 's 2011 Annual Art
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  • I own up to the fact that I am drawn to the portraits artist Jenny Morgan creates because they are unconventional. Yet they capture qualities of the human face and our other human qualities in ways that read very true and lifelike. I like them because
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  • We can never imagine a world without vision. Whether one works as a realist painter or abstract artist, the quality of our vision determines the ultimate appearance of the art that we make. As viewers of art, we can rarely know or consider if the art
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  • Continuing the long line of intimists from Vermeer to Vuillard, Mark Karnes makes an alluring world out of the quietest aspects of his domestic life. Like all great painters of the near-at-hand, Karnes' work reminds us that beauty is to be found everywhere
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  • In a time when we often hear the arts being dismissed as unnecessary luxuries and when so many art classes in schools have been cut, it's nice to hear a little good news. Portrait of Claude Renoir Painting by Renoir, 1907, oil on canvas. A recent
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  • Looking at Mark Messersmith's artwork is like being sucked into a kaleidoscope. The colors are bold, varied, and everywhere. It seems odd to say this. I mean, of course, there is color everywhere--it's a painting. But what stands out about Messersmith's
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  • The Clubfoot Boy by Jusepe de Ribera, oil on canvas, 1642. Art...has the power to make any spot on earth the living center of the universe; and unlike science, which often gives us the illusion of understanding things we really do not understand, it helps
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  • The last two centuries, in particular, witnessed the final great explorations of the surface of the planet by scientists, geographers, and surveyors. In those pre-photography days, and for a while after, artists were an integral part of any expedition
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  • "A line is a path that can offer an interesting and varied journey, rhythmic and with occasional, pleasurable surprises. Thus is one tempted to take the journey again. " -Krome Barratt, Logic and Design: In Art, Science, and Mathematics Creating
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  • I went to an artist's talk the other day and was a bit taken aback when the artist admitted that she went door to door looking for a gallery, taking images to every venue she knew of and talking her way past many annoyed assistants to get a few minutes
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  • "Of the original phenomena, light is the most enthralling." - Leonardo da Vinci Crepuscular rays are those wonderful beams of light we see at the beginning or end of the day that appear to radiate from the single point of the sun and stream
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  • I was always taught that effective color mixing starts with discovering the tinting strength of each color on your palette. For me, that is the basis of understanding how to mix colors, because it tells me how they will react when combined. A Breath Away
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  • If I had a time machine and could travel back to learn how to oil paint from any artist in history, I would not spare a second thought setting the clock to circa 1895, smack dab in the middle of the era when Odilon Redon was refining his fine art oil
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  • Recently, we received a good question from a reader about how to paint one of our favorite landscape subjects--fog and mist. To understand how to paint light effects, it can be helpful to have a basic understanding of why things work the way they do.
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  • In all the painting or drawing dabbling I've done, there is always a definitive moment that divides my experiences into "before" and "after." It's the moment I realize I don't have to worry about going back because every
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  • I had no idea that flipping eggs was such a seriously difficult thing to do. Our third daughter, Tired of Being Youngest, is in culinary school, and this quarter's project involves creating egg dishes of all sorts, with a major emphasis on being able
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  • It's not typical that an oil painting can stir up lots of contradictory emotions, but when I look at certain works it seems like the artist is able to capture not just one or two feelings but the whole emotional spectrum. When you see one of these
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  • I may have grabbed your attention at the risk of making you think I'm a big fat fibber, but I do think that when it comes to landscape painting, you sometimes have to lie--or at least exaggerate--to get what you want. This is based on personal experience
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  • In a lot of ways the art world can be a little like a trend-crazed teenybopper. What's new and exciting gets the most attention, while art and artistic movements and groups that have been around for decades or centuries fall out of favor. But I think
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  • When it comes to being able to draw with a paintbrush, no one can touch Rembrandt. He was able to turn abstract brushstrokes into forms with texture, weight, and liveliness. He could turn two swipes of a painting brush loaded with white paint into the
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  • I don't usually think favorably of extreme ideas or extreme ways of doing things. Mostly, this is because I've found that sensible ideas often come with compromise. And in many ways, I think this applies to my ideas about fantasy art. I love fantasy
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  • Why go to the trouble of painting from life when our cameras can take such great pictures? Digital cameras have gotten so good at taking properly exposed, beautiful photos that they can fool us into thinking that they are also accurate. To be sure, the
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  • It’s quite sad that 18 th -century painter Luis Melendez died poor and relatively unknown and yet he is now recognized as one, if not the, greatest still life art painter of his day. His style and approach as a still life artist breathed new life
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  • I was in Florida a few weeks ago and felt so lucky to be in such a warm, sunny place that I don't think I spent a minute indoors. I was kayaking, mountain biking, walking on the beach, and swimming in the ocean. And again and again I would look around
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  • The style of artwork I make often falls under the general heading of realism, and this oil painting is a case-in-point of why I struggle with the term. First, here's a bit of background on the source of my angst. In the atelier system, students are
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  • I love my Honda Fit. And while that may seem to have nothing to do with art, actually, it does. You see, I drive my Honda Fit everywhere and in the process of its being used it gets dusty, the tires see wear, the interior windows next to where my Toddler
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  • I look at paintings a lot. It's what I do--my work and my personal interests overlap. So yes, me and painting? We're on very familiar terms. And sometimes that can breed a bit of contempt as the saying goes. Sometimes I can be disillusioned and
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  • It's a brand new year and I want to start it off with a bang! And the one thing that I can't get enough of is color. The color wheel holds such simple beauty and complex mysteries, from saturated primary colors to more involved color mixes, that
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  • I was doubly lucky last week because I had a thoughtful discussion with a great artist, Patricia Watwood, about how most notable representational art is "real" and about what happens to artists when they are faced with stepping outside that
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  • The Norwegian Artist and I walk 3-5 miles every day, broken up in two or three sessions. It gets the dog out, me off the chair in front of the computer, and the Norwegian from behind his oil painting easel. During the break, we propound to one another
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  • That sounds gross, but in the hands of contemporary painter Alex Kanevsky, it's not. As a classically trained artist, Kanevsky's painting techniques and skills are strong. But the way he chooses to paint--in patches and broad swaths that lend
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  • While it was a lousy summer for tomatoes, something in the air made the pumpkins and winter squash particularly prolific, and we find ourselves with a workshop full of the stuff. What we are convinced is a flood of trouble may actually be a sea of opportunity
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  • Our youngest daughter, Tired of Being Youngest, recently started culinary school, which means that we're eating a lot better these days. It's not so much that she's doing a lot of experimenting on us -- most nights she's home late and
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  • Ever wondered where Da Vinci found the time to create all his masterpieces? Alongside his fine art painting he managed to dabble as a scientist, geologist, architect, mathematician, engineer, and anatomist with a bit of aeronautical design thrown in for
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  • Around this time of year we are inundated with wintry scenes and beautiful snowy landscapes--on greeting cards, products, advertisements, calendars and more. But these winter landscapes aren't necessarily all created equal, and the same goes for the
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  • I have tried hard the past few years--with mixed success--to avoid answering the question, "How are you doing?" with the response "Really busy." Some blame our cultural "time shortage" on the clock, progress, and our obsession
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  • How does brush sizing work and where do you start? Have you every ordered some new brushes online, feeling pretty confident they'll be the perfect size for your latest oil on canvas creation? After all you spent all afternoon researching them. Only
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  • I've been told by more than one person that I try to see both sides of any issue. And my personal life aside, I can attest that I also do the same for art--I like to see it from all sides, materially speaking. That makes me a perfect match for mixed
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  • How to let go of small brush addiction so your paintings can move on to become more gestural If you lost all of your brushes, which one would you miss the most? For me, it's a 12 year old Filbert bristle brush that has lost its shape, has unruly hairs
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  • Artists who step outside their studios take a leap of faith. When you determine that you are ready to create a plein air painting , you take a chance with lighting, composition, color, and time. All of these are variables that you need to contend with
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  • My dad is a little manic about asking our family to get our holiday wish lists to him waaaaaaay before he has to fight the crowds and wait in long lines. As usual, I'm procrastinating, but if I were to give him my art wish list, I could have it ready
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  • How many of us have started a work of art full of enthusiasm and excitement, only to wind up disappointed with an unfinished oil painting or watercolor sketch and you are left with no idea why? While there are many reasons for these false starts, they
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  • I'm a water person. I love boating, swimming, scuba diving, and just looking at the ever-changing surface of nearby waterways. And I'm not alone. American artists--and those abroad--have been enamored with so many beautiful bodies of water over
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  • It is such a treat when you see an artist's work and you like it. Then you talk with the artist and you like him or her. And then you see them in action as an instructor and you fall for their teaching in a big way because everything they say makes
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  • No need to buy a holiday card from the card shop or grocery store when you are as capable with paint and pencil, collage and design, as all of us at Artist Daily. This year, help us ring in the holiday season by participating in our Move Over Hallmark
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  • We travel frequently to paint en plein air in new locations and sometimes teach workshops in those new environments as well. One of our favorite locations is northern New Mexico--the Abiquiu and Ghost Ranch area. Each day while we are there, we plan our
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  • Granted, this story gets a lot less steamy when I tell you that I'm torn between the work of two oil painting artists, Adolph Menzel and Jonas Lie. I've studied the work of both of these artists on my own for quite a while, trying to puzzle out
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  • "If you could get inside the heads of the people around you, you'd probably be surprised at how unsure and unconfident they feel. It's likely that they'd feel the same about you. We're pretty good at hiding our true thoughts; it's
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  • A long time ago I read a quote from artist Nathan Goldstein and it has always stayed with me. He implied that artists are truly artists once they learn something and then forget it. I took that to mean I didn't have to study too hard in college since
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  • When I use the words "fantasy pictures," I'm usually referring to all sorts of imaginative realism--not only sci-fi art or wanting to know how to draw a dragon. But bringing in a layer of fantasy to your paintings or drawings can be daunting
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  • Perhaps the toughest skill that the artist painting outside must learn is the ability to judge values accurately, and then mix them in paint. The reason that this skill requires so much practice to get right is because our eyes and brains are constantly
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  • I hesitate to admit that some of my education these days is derived from Facebook, thanks to those seemingly endless placards with quotes that people are always posting: "I think it's weird how some days I feel skinny and some days I feel like
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  • With the rapidly expanding emergence of social media over the last several years, I think the majority of artists--like most people--have looked upon the phenomenon with anything from mild curiosity to enthusiastic interest. Many of us have jumped on
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  • What is success? Be honest with yourself. Do you truly believe that a successful person is defined by the car he drives, the title after her name, or their number of Twitter followers? Life is bigger, wider, deeper than what you can fit into a shoebox
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  • I roll my eyes every time I hear about representational art and realism being "imperiled," because there are so many important representational artists painting right now. It's almost offensive how people think legitimacy comes with the
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  • "Frustration isn't always such a bad thing. It's a sign that you're trying something new, different, or outside your level of familiarity, and in working your way through it (and you will) you conquer this challenge and move on to the
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  • Here it is: If you aren't going to really push it when you make a landscape painting , it is going to be completely forgettable. Having looked at thousands of landscape paintings, and made a few myself, I'll be honest and tell you that only the
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  • The loss of an artist and teacher from childhood has caused me to reflect upon not only her life and work, but also those lessons that she taught me. The myriad distractions of daily life, from the constant need to earn money for survival to the many
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  • Note that I said learned—because I did not particularly care for or respond to Gauguin's oil painting Fatata Te Miti when I first saw it. I thought there was too much going on and the colors were too aggressive. It made me anxious and uneasy
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  • A few posts ago I wrote about how introverts are normal people (gasp!) and introduced you to Susan Cain's warm and informative book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking . I wanted to revisit it to talk about Deliberate
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  • I'm so excited to tell you about the opening night for the Contemporary American Realism exhibit at the Beijing World Art Museum . We were all blown away by the scale of the presentation, the press core, the ceremony, and the huge crowd. This has
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  • "The last mad throb of red just as it turns green; the ultimate shriek of orange calling all the blues of heaven for relief and support...each color almost regains the fun it must have felt within itself on forming the first rainbow." --Charles
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  • Swimming in the ocean of life, so to speak, it sometimes feels as though we must use every bit of energy to keep our heads above the waves. Over many years we have developed some techniques that help us to shed the heavy seaweed and barnacles of the daily
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  • When it comes to certain creative sensibilities--awareness of color, editing a concept--I trust my judgment. I think I have pretty good instincts--maybe not in the execution of said sensibilities in an oil painting I paint myself, but I know good color
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  • Even writing the words "Top 10 Painters of All Time" makes me cringe a little bit because...really? Really? I find it a herculean task to narrow a list down to the best 100 oil painting artists of all time, let alone just ten. But in the spirit
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  • In plein air we attempt a form of direct translation. In the studio, we may recall our observations of nature, but are freer to be inventive with color. Night Passage by Mitchell Albala, 2006, oil painting on panel, 20 x 20. It's September and the
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  • Painting is an act of creativity and intention, but it sometimes, many times, includes acts of destruction large and small. It may be that the one skill that separates the dedicated professional artist from the amateur is the willingness to destroy, obliterate
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  • When it comes to putting additives into your paints, it just isn't the same as eating a Twinkie or bag of Doritos. Additives are necessary in some cases, especially for landscape artists who work with varying conditions when painting outdoors . They
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  • It is just reality that certain painting techniques and tools will get more of your attention than others as you develop your artistic interests and style. But knowing how to paint the way you want to paint should still leave room for new things, too
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  • "It's really hard for young artists. You're an adult at 18, but for a painter it takes longer. You really don't get it together until 35 or 45." La Blanchisseuse by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, 1884-1888, oil on canvas . Some research
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  • There's a lot of work to getting an artist website up and running , and once it's done, take some time to pat yourself on the back and indulge in a flavored coffee with lots of whipped cream. But after you're done, it's time to wash the
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  • Human figure painting, particularly painting skin, is the height of artistic prowess for me. I'll know I've made significant strides as a painter when I can recreate the opalescent glowing surface of skin. But I have a strong handicap to overcome
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  • It's no wonder artists are starving. People want their art for free. This morning I received yet another plea from a charitable agency, offering us the opportunity to support their ongoing mission by promoting Steve Henderson's oil paintings.
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  • I don't get to attend as many oil painting art workshops as I would like, so when the opportunity to participate in one does present itself, I really want to get the most out of my time there. Here are a few of my own "warm-up to workshop"
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  • Following the submission process, exactly, when you send your portfolio to a gallery is crucial, be it emailing your website or sending off a package for consideration. The same attention to detail applies when you enter an art show or group oil painting
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  • Tricked ya! Sort of! On the one hand, fantasy art isn't that new at all. But as I was sitting in a meeting flipping through American Artist magazine's May 2012 issue --while still paying close attention to what was being said, of course!--I was
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  • I'm fascinated by the concept of "less is more," especially as it applies to representational painting. It's hardly intuitive that having less detail makes a painting more realistic, but that's often the case. We've all been
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  • Because learning about color complements on the color wheel is often one of the first lessons we are taught in art class, complementary color paintings--those contrasting blue and orange, yellow and violet, and red and green--are often thought of as for
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  • My kids accuse me of saying obvious things, along the lines of, "The car won't get you there if you don't put gas in it," or "Your clothes won't be ready to wear tomorrow if you keep them in the washing machine." But I
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  • I was in the studio of my oil painting artist friend the other day and she had a really sizeable bucket filled with oil paint tubes sitting beside her palette. Some of the tubes were so squeezed out and folded up that I wondered if there was anything
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  • Attempting to define realism or to clarify the various styles of representational painting can be a challenging task. When writing about today's painters, I always hesitate to use words like "classical," "realist," "contemporary
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  • Your website can be a terrific online portfolio . But there are definitely ways to not use your website when marketing art. An initial temptation for many artists is to find as many gallery e-mail addresses as they can and send out their website information
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  • Not all art competitions are created equal. There are some that are themed art contests, and others are more open-ended about narrative. One art competition could have an open call for artists, and another could require its participants to submit work
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  • I'm not telling you anything you don't already know when I say that successful portraiture is successful when the portrait artist, foremost, captures a likeness. Yes, I ardently believe that there has to be something more to the story—a
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  • There's no shame in your game if you haven't heard of this kind of perspective drawing ...or lack thereof. I kind of pride myself on knowing a good bit about how to draw perspective (although my actual execution of a perspective drawing is usually
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  • The influential art critic Clement Greenberg (1909-1994) often cited the derisive term kitsch to critique artwork that, in his mind, failed to live up to the tenets of the modernist movement. His theories privileged formalist nonobjective abstraction
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  • I don't believe that gallery representation defines an artist or even makes one a professional, but if you are interested in pursuing that kind of relationship with a gallery there are a few tips to keep in mind. Make a solid connection. All the artists
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  • I don't mean to be an alarmist, but there are certain habits that artists develop when oil painting that can be detrimental to the larger arc of their professional progress. None of us intend to pick up bad practices but routine and absentmindedness
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  • Greetings everyone, Hello from Incamminati in the fine city of Philadelphia! A few days ago marked the fourth day of the Intensive Workshop being led by oil painter Lea Colie Wight , one of the senior Incamminati instructors, and a rising star in the
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  • It's not an unreal aspiration to make money by selling your oil painting artwork or watercolors, but it will take a significant amount of work in two areas: 1) Your art. While it is possible to make money off of art that isn't particularly good
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  • Jeffrey Watts: Weekend with the Masters art instructor Jeffrey R. Watts is a southern California native. Growing up in rural San Diego county with an artist father, Watts demonstrated an early aptitude for the visual arts. After an injury cut short his
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  • Jennifer McChristian: Weekend with the Masters art instructor Jennifer McChristian was born and raised in Montreal, Canada. In 1986 she and her family took permanent residence in Los Angeles. In 1990 she earned a B.F.A with honors from Otis Parsons Art
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  • Michael Klein: Weekend with the Masters art instructor Karina's Rose by Michael Klein, oil painting. Michael Klein is a young artist in the NovoRealist movement (new realism), creating melancholic oil painting art that has a distinct and haunting
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  • Daniel E. Greene: Weekend with the Masters art instructor Daniel E. Greene is a former instructor of painting at the National Academy of Design and the Art Students League of New York, both in Manhattan. He is the author of the book Pastel , which was
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  • Ken Backhaus: Weekend with the Masters art instructor Kenn Backhaus was born in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, and spent much of his childhood on the family farm near Burnett, Wisconsin. His fondness for nature became the catalyst for his art. Backhaus' parents
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  • Ken Auster: Weekend with the Masters Instructor Clearing Skies by Ken Auster, oil painting. Ken Auster grew up with his feet deeply implanted in the sands of Southern California beaches. Caught up in the surfing culture of the 1960s, Auster ate, slept
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  • Juliette Aristides: Weekend with the Masters art instructor Alexis by Juliette Aristides, oil painting. Juliette Aristides is a Seattle-based painter who seeks to understand and convey the human spirit through art. Aristides is the founder of and an instructor
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  • The influx of artistic institutions moving into the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City continues with the Michael Rosenfeld Gallery prepared to make the leap. After showcasing groundbreaking oil painting work and other art pieces for the past 23 years
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  • Given what we've discussed in the last two articles, Am I an Artist? and Am I a Real Artist ? Not to mention Part-Time Artists Are Artists, Too --you probably have a pretty good idea of what my answer to this one will be, but let's talk about
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  • Henri Rousseau is best known for his exotic jungle scenes, but did you know that he never left France during his lifetime? All the imagery he painted was invented entirely in his mind and perhaps coupled with inspiration he got from listening to others
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  • The winners of our Self-Portrait Cover Competition are featured in the September issue of American Artist, and they share advice about how to paint the figure and how to maintain a successful painting practice. When we asked David Tanner, the winner of
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  • Painters and draftsmen alike puzzle through perspective drawing issues. They almost have to if they want to establish any kind of sense of space in their work. Without linear perspective, all that remains is the flatness of the surface-and no artists
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  • "Am I an Artist?" I can't help but wonder how many nuclear physicists get up out of bed each morning and ask themselves whether they are nuclear physicists. Granted, if one is a nuclear physicist, one has concrete evidence of the fact--education
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  • An artiste is something you don't want to be, that is, if you consider yourself an artist. While it sounds akin to archaic words like poetess or authoress, which in years passed denoted a female poet or author, an artiste is a "sort of"
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  • When I think of one iconic American oil painting , Washington Crossing the Delaware by Emmanuel Leutze always come to my mind. I love talking to people about the work because it is so polarizing--some love it but some people absolutely hate it. So here's
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  • Last week we talked about whether "real" artists take workshops (they can, and do). Now let's consider whether you have to make your living full-time as an artist in order to be considered one. Many of us hold down other jobs while we pursue
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  • Over the weekend, a friend of mine joked that an artist's ultimate goal should be something like 1) making work that is awesome, 2) being famous or having people appreciate your work so you can make a living doing it, and 3) doing what you want--meaning
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  • Focusing on traditional painting methods and their contemporary application including encaustic used in the Fayum region of ancient Egypt, egg tempera from early Renaissance Siena and oil painting from Renaissance Venice is a way to connect your studio
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  • One of the shows that has left a lasting impression with me is "Édouard Vuillard: A Painter and His Muses, 1890-1940", which was at The Jewish Museum. Visiting this exhibition introduced me to Vuillard's life and work and resonated
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  • I've always been fascinated by artists who live during incredibly polarizing times, but somehow still seem to go their own way. Elmer Bischoff--ever heard of this oil painting artist? He stands out as an artist in the aftermath of World War II when
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  • The size, clarity, and portability of an iPad begs for it to be used as a digital oil painting canvas or sketchbook page, and now you can do just that. I'm consistently amazed at the apps for artists that are being released on smartphones and tablets
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  • We've all had those moments when the details and concerns of keeping all the plates spinning distracts us from the one thing, the most important thing, that those of us who are creative people must do--create. Even doing chores that are pleasurable
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  • Let's talk about this term, luxury, first. A luxury is something that you don't really need, and by that definition, lots of things fall into this category. We need shelter; we need protection from the elements; we need food; we need water; we
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  • Have you ever looked at an abstract art piece or oil painting genre scene or pastel seascape and wonder, how'd they do that?! Chances are the answer lies somewhere in mixed media. Art that tends to defy our eyes does so for a reason--it isn't
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  • The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Presents Work by Emerging Artist Jordan Griska for Lenfest Plaza In the newly constructed Lenfest Plaza located adjacent to Philadelphia's Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA), artist Jordan Griska
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  • When I discovered grisaille oil painting I thought I'd gone to heaven. Learning how to oil paint is a lot of fun, but it is also just a lot . There is so much to deal with--getting your forms right, steering toward an interesting composition, brushwork
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  • California has long been seen as a land of opportunity. People have been flocking there since the Gold Rush of 1849, which brought close to 300,000 settlers to the state and incited an economic and cultural boom of epic proportions. For artists, the attraction
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  • Some artists make a big deal out of being self taught, but truth of the matter is, all artists are self taught. The difference between the two is encapsulated in two questions: Are you learning oil painting for example only from yourself, just from what
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  • When you can do something well, it can be difficult to set it aside or modify that skill for the good of your art. John Evans is an American artist who admits to battling the tendency to overwork his oil paintings, sliding between depiction and evocation
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  • What was that beautiful work I saw at the Met? Which room was Sargent's portrait painting , Madame X , in? I loved that Renoir but didn't have time to go back and spend a little more time with that work and that work alone. How do I answer these
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  • In any painting, the biggest expenditure for the artist is the frame that goes around the finished piece. If it's a watercolor painting, there's the matting, the glazing, and the frame holding it all together; for the oil on canvas or acrylic
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  • The art of still life painting is a time-honored one that has been around since at least the time of the ancient Egyptians. Still life paintings were often used to adorn the interiors of Egyptian tombs with the belief that these depictions of food and
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  • I'm not blessed at this point in my life to have children, but if I did you can bet I'd be one of those mothers who want portrait paintings of her children at every stage of their lives. Even better, I could learn how to paint children like artist
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  • I love Masterpiece Theater on PBS. Recently the movie Birdsong aired--a love story about a soldier on the battlefield of World War I and the lover he left behind. Claude Renoir Writing by Pierre Auguste Renoir, lithograph, 1902/3. There was a scene from
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  • Mural From the Oaks Hotel by Jessie Arms Botke, 1953, oil on canvas with gold leaf, 82½ x 173½. Courtesy The Irvine Museum, Irvine, California. The Irvine Museum in California is shining a powerful spotlight on the artwork of talented female
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  • If you do not have an official, proper, "real" painting studio, don't feel bad. Your studio can be in a corner of your dining room. Many people's are. Or it can be a section of the garage where you make your oil painting art ; a spare
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  • We are big admirers of J. M. W. Turner's work in oil and watercolor, especially his magnificent, ethereal watercolor paintings . Unfortunately many of his paintings are much less vivid today than they were when he painted them. We know this from written
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  • Regardless of the kind of art you practice, if you have any hopes of making a living at it, you'll eventually have to share your creations, whether at an open mic, in a YouTube video, or putting together an oil painting group show with artist friends
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  • You don't have to think terribly hard to figure out that the painting genre that has all of these characteristics in common is floral painting . It is a practice that has inspired artists to create beautiful, graceful paintings for centuries, but
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  • I work with knitters, and a student recently told me, "I don't like the way my stuff turns out." When I asked her what kind of yarn she used, she replied, "Oh, I just picked up something cheap. I didn't want to spend money on something
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  • Recently the students at Studio Incamminati went to New York. I chose not to go, instead wandering around the school looking at the drawings and paintings on the student walls. Natalie Italiano , an instructor in the core program as well as a Fellow there
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  • Earlier this week I was lucky enough to attend the opening of Jason Bard Yarmosky's solo show "Elder Kinder" at Lyons Wier Gallery, in New York City. It's a terrific painting exhibition, and it got me thinking about how an artist can
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  • I can't think of a single parent who lolls in the passenger seat of the car, detached while observing their teenaged driver's inaugural foray into the city streets. Sometimes we rest, relax and dream--not, however, when we are actively painting
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  • My mom is an artist, but she's nothing like me. For all that, we're both artists. If you want to know where I got my artist genes, I got most of them from her. Genes alone don't make an artist, though. Making art is kind of a stupid career
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  • I've come to realize that that old saying "It's not always what you know, but who you know," is spot on. Even at American Artist magazine . Luckily, "we" know a lot of people, and as a result we have remarkable access to some
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  • The Norwegian Artist and I have a friend who specializes in painting small pet animals...that is, when he paints. While to paint regularly, you don't need a huge space, you'll find yourself happiest with a designated one. On the Horizon by Steve
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  • Short of lobotomy, we will always have the equivalent of mental trails that our brains follow when we are painting. Artists develop these based on painting techniques that they've learned along the way, or they can be expressions of inherent ideas
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  • Different people attend painting workshops with varying expectations, but the ones who get the most out of the experience are those who recognize that workshops are not: A workshop gives you the opportunity to start at one point in your artistic journey
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  • I started off seeing skin tones in a closed off way, not really pushing to find the dimension and depth right in front of me. I almost felt I was still pulling a Crayon out of the box to color a figure's form from head to toe like I did in childhood
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  • It's funny how I have gotten so immersed in art that I tend to project very human emotions or ideas to inanimate objects in paintings and drawings. Still life painting objects that don't spatial connect in some way most often won't connect
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  • A few weeks ago I had a studio session with Lea Colie Wight , a great painter who had a really lovely tone to her oil painting surface that many of us loved and wanted to know more about. I wanted to share that info with you! Canvas Toning Process The
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  • Yep, it is a pretty lofty goal. I know it. But there are so many incredible artists out there who are doing incredible work and deserve more visibility! Here are a few ways that you can elevate your artistic profile in the wider world. By no means are
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  • One of the major challenges of painting outdoors is the need to gather enough visual information about our subject in a brief moment of perfect light. In rushing to capture the light in nature, it is easy to lose those subtle details and tonal changes
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  • Whether or not you like to be around a lot of people is one thought to consider when you choose the right workshop for you. Descent into Bryce by Steve Henderson, 18 x 18, oil painting, also available as a limited edition signed print . Let's assume
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  • I deliberately entitled this post using a word that I have eliminated from my vocabulary: Should. Like sunrise to a new day, the right workshop can lead you to fresh new beginnings in your art pursuits. Awakening by Steve Henderson, 24 x 40, oil painting
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  • Painting is a deep and vast ocean. It is a world full of possibilities. And while I am deeply drawn to that wide-open aspect of it, I'm also super intimidated by it too! I feel like there is no limit to what I can learn, and while I'm thirsty
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  • A Summer Night by Winslow Homer, 1890, oil on canvas, 30 3/16 x 40 3/16. The word "great" (or "greatest") can be pretty subjective, and lately I've been thinking about how to better qualify the term. To celebrate our 75 th Anniversary
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  • A friend mentioned to me that someone challenged her to read, within one year, a particularly long and demanding book. "I didn't really want to do it," she confessed. "But he's knowledgeable and he was insistent, so I did."
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  • A willingness to experiment with perspective and style is often the determining factor between a competent artist and a master. A new exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art , "Van Gogh Up Close," takes a compelling look at the choices
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  • Patricia Watwood is a skilled oil painter and incredibly deserving of a lot of praise for the art career she has built for herself. She's also quite willing to share her approach to building a network for her art, as she attests below. Enjoy! The
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  • One of my first self-assigned duties at Artist Daily was to get out in the local American art community and see the kind of work that is being made all over the country, what kind of art techniques are gaining in popularity, and how artists are communicating
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  • While I was working recently on American Artist's new special issue, The Complete Painter's Handbook ( order now! ), I had a little debate with myself. The question at hand: If you are working to learn how to paint, is it better to focus on following
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  • Portrait artist and painter David McLeod is amidst an exciting project: creating a 10-part video series on portraiture . McLeod takes viewers through the steps that all portrait artists go through to create a compelling, visually appealing portrait, but
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  • Where would painting be without the color blue? It is so easy to obtain artist paints of any hue these days that we forget that in the time of both Michelangelo and Titian, a pure, vibrant blue pigment could only be made by laboriously cooking and hand
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  • Below you'll find artist and blogger Jennifer King's discussion of when a plein air painting can be too real. I don't think she's being harsh at all, but you'll have to decide for yourself. Enjoy! ***** I think it's time for some
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  • We have always felt that as plein air painters we are observers of the landscape—recording moments and places that can rapidly transform with fleeting changes of light. In a pure landscape, figures and animals are rendered small and insignificant
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  • Portraiture is, in my humble opinion, the domain of artistic masters. All the greats, such as Velazquez, Rembrandt, Goya, and Sargent, can be counted as incredibly skilled and innovative portrait artists in addition to being pretty brilliant at everything
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  • Woman with a Hat (detail) by Henri Matisse, 1905, oil on canvas. Archimedes (detail) by Jose de Ribera, 1630, oil painting. Self-portrait by Vincent van Gogh, 1888, oil painting. A few days ago I was hanging out with a mixed bag of artists. And by mixed
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  • I love that my job allows me to learn something new every day—and the fact that the majority of those discoveries are art-related make them all the more inspiring. Lately I've been in art-historian mode, and I've have been trying to better
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  • I don't care how many times I see Monet's paintings, they never cease to inspire me. I just had the great pleasure of seeing the new Monet show at the Cincinnati Art Museum with my art buddies, and especially for those of us plein-air artists
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  • The Water Lily Pond by Claude Monet, oil painting, 1899. Mitchell Albala is an inspiring art instructor in the field of landscape painting , and it turns out he's an awesome detective as well. Recently, he did some sleuthing on a rare video clip of
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  • Yellow Pen by Nat Meade, oil on linen, 24 x 20, 2011. Focusing on formal concerns in art does not make an artist uptight or unimaginative. Quite the opposite actually—pursuing matters of pattern, line, space, and color can prove to jumpstart free
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  • Sometimes the question shouldn't be what to paint as much as how to paint. There are centuries' worth of artists who fill art history textbooks, but those who stand heads and shoulders above the rest do so because they turned their painting art
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  • There are differing opinions among color theory purists whether white should be considered a color at all, since it represents the absence of hue or chroma, and cannot be made from the three primaries, as black theoretically can be. It's not usually
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  • Artist Daily Member Spotlight: Steve Henderson Summer Breeze by Steve Henderson, oil on canvas, 24 x 24. Artist Daily: Tell me about your oil painting process . Are there rules you adhere to or just the opposite? Steve Henderson: Although I do follow
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  • Inkhead , 2009, oil on canvas, 29 x 16. Dorothy , 2010, oil on canvas, 14 x 14. Anakin Padawan , 2009, oil on canvas, 44 x 28. I have been blogging this past year about preparing for my exhibit, "Myths and Individuals." Now, it's time for
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  • When I was young and taking art classes, I was always stumped when my teachers would let us decide individually what to paint. There were just too many creative options and I would simply shut down. One time I went home in a funk, stressed out about what
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  • Have you ever been looking for a new place to live, visiting different apartments or houses, and every time you experience a new reaction to a place and its spaces? It always happens to me. Either I love the architecture and light in this one, or the
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  • Dutch still life painting set the standard for out-of-this-world virtuosity in the 17th century, and I'll never get over the unusual mix of objects artists chose to depict: food of all kinds, polished silverware and gleaming glass, embroidered and
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  • Artists working today that I admire most all usually have one thing in common—they have developed their own unique contemporary practice while still utilizing classical methods. I've come to realize that I have a bias for artwork that has a
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  • A painting brush isn't animate. It isn't going to teach me how to paint or go about painting art when no one is looking. It needs the hand of the artist to do its job. Penitent Mary Magdalene by Titian, 1560s, oil on canvas. But one thing a brush—by
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  • Old Cedar by Bill Guffey, oil, 18 x 24. Peasant by Joan Langdon, watercolor painting, 10.5 x 11.5. Tomiko by Adriana Guidi, oil on canvas panel, 14 x 18. That's Brian Neher's mantra for his upcoming free art contest , and it is one that I can
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  • I know it is only January, but I'm already thinking spring! And so is the Pantone Color Institute . The organization has just released their seasonal color report, and while this is specifically written for the fashion and design industry, we art
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  • When I asked friends and colleagues about landscape painting artists with the best use of color, the conversation got downright heated. Mostly because there's so much to consider when you look at each individual artist's color "theory"
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  • Spring in the Hills II by John Hulsey, 5 x 7, oil painting. Whenever we get to feeling that there is nothing really new to be discovered in art or the world, we have to keep in mind that the "undiscovered country" often lies in our own backyards
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  • Children on the Seashore by Joaquin Sorolla, oil on canvas, 1903 . I was once again reading through my copy of the catalog for the 1989 exhibition, The Painter Joaquin Sorolla , and came across this 1933 quote by John Paul Getty in an article called Creative
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  • Eva Mullarky by Kristin Künc, oil on linen, 9 x 13, 2011. I can be a really hard sell when it comes to portraiture because from a beginner painter's perspective, I'm not always sure how to get the most out of a portrait painting session.
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  • Venus Awakes by Patricia Watwood, 2011, oil on canvas, 38 x 34. Karen in White by Paul McCormack, oil on canvas, 40 x 29. Enigma (Self-Portrait) by David Leffel, 2009, oil on canvas, 52 x 34. On Sunday, January 22 nd , the ACOPAL group will celebrate
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  • Our contributing bloggers John Hulsey and Ann Trusty of The Artist's Road wrote a really informative blog about how to get the most out of a photograph of your painting or drawing, and I wanted to share it with you. Enjoy! Film holder frame attached
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  • I get excited and a bit chagrined whenever I discover oil painters of the past that I've never heard of. I realize that I'm no walking encyclopedia, yet I like to think I've got sound footing in oil painting . But the history of fine art oil
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  • Don't give up your plein air focus over the winter months. Try to paint from life indoors and keep sketching. ( Melting Snow by Ben Fenske, 60 x 75, oil on canvas.) For some of us, winter weather is just a bit too unpredictable and chilly to spend
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  • Back II (Joshua) by Martha Mayer Erlebacher, 2003, oil on canvas, 42 x 42. The human body is beautiful—as a whole and in its parts. Body drawings that accentuate the sensuous lines of the body and the power of the human form are steeped in a knowledge
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  • The botanical gardens in Washington, DC, near the Capitol. When I'm visiting family in Virginia during winter, I always make a point to walk through the botanical gardens near the Capitol in Washington, DC. It is one of my favorite places, and the
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  • Philadelphia Story II--Spires by Sarah Yeoman, watercolor painting, 14 x 20. I don't mean literally shrink it, but if you take a photo of your painting and reduce it to thumbnail size and it still holds together compositionally, you've got a good
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  • I plan on spending quality time with the catalog published by the Whitney Museum on Lyonel Feininger ( Gaberndorf II , oil on canvas, 1924, 39 x 30.5). Take this time and don't draw or paint. Okay, I was kind of thinking the world would end if I said
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  • Grisaille copy of Jacques-Louis David's Patroclus , oil on linen, 48 x 78. At this time of year, we all travel so much that it can be a real challenge to figure out how to bring our painting supplies with us when we visit family and friends. Whether
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  • In the December/January issue of American Artist magazine, the editors and staff put out feelers throughout the art community to find artists who are established or up and coming, and deserve recognition. They had limited space in the print issue, so
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  • The Honorable Clarence Harmon, Mayor of St. Louis by Patricia Watwood, oil on canvas, 24 x 18, oval, 2002. Collection of St. Louis City Hall. Someone recently asked me what I did to get recognized and become part of the art scene in my hometown of St
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  • Ariadne by Janet Rogers, watercolor painting. Since coming to Artist Daily, my parents are both super supportive of me and our web community. My mom does her best to get everyone she knows to join us at Artist Daily, and my dad buys me art supplies in
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  • T o Be Where There's Life by Ryan Coleman, oil on canvas, 30 x 40, 2010. The coolest thing I ever learned about painting flowers , specifically how to paint a rose, was when a painting teacher told me that you paint them by not painting them. Back
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  • We've been discussing shocking your system to keep your art practice from falling into routines. Another excellent means of accomplishing shock is to switch media. By and large, I work in two media: graphite and white pencil on toned paper, and oil
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  • The Coming Storm by George Inness, 1879, oil on canvas, 27 1/4 x 41 3/4. Are you as bored of pretty outdoor painting scenes as I am? My eyes just seem to glaze over when I see a plein air painting scene with picture perfect sunlight over an idyllic landscape
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  • My family and I at my opening. Cute bunch, right? The show included works from the last 10 years. I know it's been a while since I've written. Let's see--the last time was just when I got back from my summer vacation. And now it's....November
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  • Ugh, after all the holiday eating I've been doing, I should probably go exercise or run laps. But as a warm up I thought I would talk about physicality, power, and movement in oil painting . Maybe this'll be the inspiration I need to get off my
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  • This being the day after Thanksgiving, we celebrate leftovers in my house—and pretty much all other activities that result in eating. So I thought, why mess with family tradition? I'm devoting today's column to one subject matter I rarely
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  • All the hard work and unique vision that we pour into our painting and drawing can result in artwork that we are proud of. The next step is to make an accurate photographic record of our art to share with friends, collectors, galleries and perhaps to
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  • Faded Glory by Rose Frantzen, 36 x 48, oil painting. If there were daredevils of art, I certainly would not be one of them. I'm always hesitating and rethinking what I'm doing. (In my day-to-day life I'm not such a scaredy cat—I swear
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  • I want to share an inspiring story I just heard from one of our members, Mark Beale . Enjoy! Bryce Canyon by Bruce Stam, oil painting, 8 x 10. Backwater Twilight by Mark Beale, oil painting, 9 x 12. Bruce Stam and I are two landscape painters from opposite
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  • Lee's Ranch - Sunny Day by Camille Przewodek, 9 x 12, oil on canvas. Even now it sounds like a beautiful, incredible, impossible thing to accomplish. I mean, paint light ? It seemed like magic to me at first. And I didn't understand what it all
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  • We plein-air artists seem to put a lot of emphasis on traveling to far off places to paint, don't we? The fields of Tuscany, the rugged California coast, the farmhouses of the Cotswolds all seem to beckon. And heeding that call can be fantastic. I
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  • Delphinium by Sherrie McGraw, oil painting, 8 x 10. Sherrie McGraw's work always surprises me because she doesn't allow the objects she is painting to dictate how she paints. Instead, McGraw paints to articulate form, masses, and her own ideas
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  • Portrait of Queen Elizabeth I by Nicholas Hilliard (attributed), 1585. I can only imagine the excitement and thrill of sitting for any one of the great portrait painters in history such as Bronzino, Velazquez, and Sargent. But then my mind goes directly
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  • Optimal Orientation of Subject and Artist in Plein Air Before the first daub of paint is squeezed out of the tube and brush is put to canvas, many plein air painters have already set themselves up for failure. How? By selecting a site that doesn't
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  • This is one of the artist's more traditional pieces in terms of his painting process. ( Raspberry House by Jamie Wyeth, 1988, watercolor, 22 1/2 x 28 1/2.) Watercolor is one of those wondrous materials that can be manipulated in so many different
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  • Camille au métier by Claude Monet, 1875, oil painting. "My rejection at the Salon brought an end to my hesitation [to settle in Paris] since after this failure I can no longer claim to cope... alas, that fatal rejection has virtually taken
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  • ...are ones that paint self-portraits. As we all well know, artists have a lot of firepower at their disposal. It comes from being trained to look critically and creatively at the things you see. For an artist to turn that kind of acuity on him- or herself
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  • When discussing landscape painting , we often hear the phrase "capturing a sense of place." What does that mean to you? To me, it means so much more than just recording the physical attributes of the location. It goes way beyond suggesting the
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  • Flamenco by Ann Trusty, oil painting, 48 x 60. The science community is busy investigating the mechanisms and processes by which people are able to perceive the world around them and make visual sense of it. There are many basic questions still to be
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  • Under the Awning by Joaquin Sorolla, oil painting, 1910. "There is nothing truer than truth. All the mistakes committed by great artists are due to their having separated themselves from truth, believing that their imagination is stronger...There
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  • Isn't hanging a painting as easy as that? Yeah, right! There are so many ways that you can showcase your work, and each one can make such a difference in how each painting or drawing is perceived. Unframed. I prefer the art that I have in my apartment
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  • Ernest Lawson (1873 - 1939) came to maturity at the dawn of the 20th century, so his work was modern and gritty and real. His are not the idyllic landscape paintings of Corot , nor are they the dazzling light shows in Monet's plein air paintings
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  • Study for Gapstow Bridge in Sunlight by Bennett Vadnais, oil on canvas, 12 x 16, 2007. Fall is my favorite time of year. It's my birthday season, so of course I'm partial, but I also just love the smell of autumn. It's crisp and clean, and
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  • Reflect Your True Vision with Accurate Form Now you can paint the human form with the depth and detail it deserves - your artwork will come alive with this exciting special issue from American Artist: Portrait and Figure Painting Highlights Fall 2010. Improve the detail of your portraits with 100 pages
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  • But I think it's time for some straight talk. I've participated in many, many plein air painting critiques over the years, and I can't begin to tell you how often I've been faced with landscape paintings that are a little off. Perhaps
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  • And I am! I'm calling myself out on the carpet. I've got a handful of mirrors in my apartment and don't take advantage of what is right in front of me. Which is why I'm fired up about getting people to do more self-portraits--including
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  • These four oil paintings have something in common. Yes, of course, they were all painted by George Inness (1825-1894), one of the greatest American landscape painters of all time. But there's something else, an incredibly valuable lesson. Have you
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  • Sarah Simblet (her pen drawing, Isis 38 , above) taught me a lot about how intertwined the semblance of motion and mark-making are in really good drawings. Maybe it is part of having an arts career or maybe it is just me, but I love books and magazines
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  • Recollection of Mortefontaine by Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, landscape oil painting, 1864. One of my great heroes in art is Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot (1796-1875), the world-famous French artist who is still considered one of the best landscape artists
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  • Oil painting demonstration by Robert Liberace. To listen to Robert Liberace talk during one of his demonstrations, sometimes, fleetingly, it sounds to me like there is an occasional contradiction. The most recent example I can point to is when he talked
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  • Rhododendron by James Sulkowski, 2001, oil painting. Notice how the flowers are arranged in a curving S-shape, starting in the back and bring your eye to the foreground. Most artists have a love-hate relationship with floral painting. There's plenty
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  • Notice the chalk lines drawn over the figure to assess and check the proportion and length of her limbs. I have finally finished my oil painting , Leaves of Grass , which I have blogged about previously. In all, the painting probably took nearly 2 months
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  • My version of an art "mixed tape" is a bunch of really great info and inspiration for us as we head into the home stretch of summer. Here are several of my favorite recent Artist Daily blog entries and American Artist online articles that have
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  • John had to deal with rapidly changing weather conditions as he worked on his plein air watercolor painting, Cub Lake Trailhead . We outdoor painters are always on the search for beautiful places to paint, and so we become inveterate travelers and explorers
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  • Left: Kem , detail, 2004, 48 x 24, oil on canvas. Right: Hands #1 , 2011, 24 x 24, oil on canvas. I am not claiming either painting is better, but without my figure drawing practice between 2004 and 2011 I couldn't have painted the newer painting
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  • Fallen Tree, Mississippi by Jeffrey Smith, 11 x 14, oil painting. My studio is filled with stuff to look at: still life objects, postcards of paintings that I love, and written notes of things to think about and remember as I'm working on a painting
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  • Revue by Everett Shinn, 1908, oil painting, 18 x 24. Everett Shinn was one of the Ashcan School artists or "The Eight," which was led by Robert Henri and included Arthur B. Davies , William Glackens , Edward Hopper, Ernest Lawson , George Luks
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  • Ocean II by John Hulsey, 30 x 40, oil painting. The painting Ocean II was created from a smaller plein air study created at sunrise on Isle of Palms, South Carolina. I liked the composition and colors, and especially the way the wet sand mirrored the
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  • A gray-scale photograph of my plein air oil painting subject. If you read my last post , you know I'm a believer in spending time planning a composition before diving into a plein-air painting . Yet, I also want to get started as soon as possible
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  • Pandora by Patricia Watwood, oil on canvas. I've had it in my head to make a "Pandora" oil painting for a while now. In the myth, Pandora is overcome with curiosity (well, who wouldn't be??) and she opens the proverbial box and releases
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  • Watercolor study by John Hulsey, 7 1/2 x 7. Being strong dog proponents (especially for dogs in the studio, where they never provide negative commentary), and being the caretakers (or is it the other way around?) of two ancient (in dog years) Great Pyrenees
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  • Believe it or not, this piece of cloth was sky painted by artist Terry Maddox using light-sensitive paints. Yowza--it's beautiful. Who says I have to start painting or drawing on a blank page? Some of my favorite drawings are doodles that are on torn
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  • Sunrise River II by John Hulsey, oil on canvas. "You can observe a lot by just watching." - Yogi Berra I was reminded of this quote as I was sitting on the boardwalk in Constitution Marsh on the Hudson River near where we used to live. I hadn't
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  • This is an underdrawing for Michael's large oil painting, Air (72 x 104). I really feel like I've grown so much during my time at Artist Daily, and in large part that is because of my exposure to the staff of and featured artists in American Artist
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  • Portrait of Ginevra di Benci by Leonardo da Vinci, 1474-1476, oil painting on wood, 16.5 x 14.5. I've described the most important technical parts of my study of Da Vinci: line and anatomy . When I began to study how to paint, I opted not to follow
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  • I don't want to learn how to paint from just anyone. I don't mean that snobbishly, but I know how I work and learn. I am a visual learner and I learn by doing. Hearing someone drone on and on makes me want to get up and run around the room, so
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  • The ACOPAL show featured contemporary American Realist painting. Whenever I step inside the beautiful and historic National Arts Club, on Gramercy Park in Manhattan, I'm reminded of how long it has been a supportive home for American Realism. In May
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  • Wait until you are in front of your outdoor painting scene before deciding what to tone your surface. I've found that how you prepare your canvas has a huge impact on the finished result of your plein-air painting . Do you start your painting right
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  • Ellen Cooper’s In Defiance of Erebus won the People’s Choice and First Place Award. After participating in a panel discussion about career goals for artists at this year’s Portrait Society of America Conference I wanted to share a few more tips that I use to keep my art growing and
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  • Plein air watercolor sketches of sites in Kansas and Charleston, South Carolina. All works by John Hulsey. It took me awhile to realize it, but I have invented a time machine. I didn’t set out to invent a time machine exactly, but like many other
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  • For the Portrait Society of America Conference in Atlanta this year, I was invited to participate in a panel on Professionalism, Leadership, and Service. I was asked to speak to “Building a Career for the Long Term.” Now, anyone who saw my tax returns for 2010 would NOT have put me on a short
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  • In a recent post on how to paint clouds at sunset , we diagrammed a pastel painting and explained a bit about the types of clouds one may encounter when painting outdoors . This time, we have dissected a watercolor, Ghost Ranch IV , that I painted in New Mexico near Georgia O’Keefe’s house
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  • Painting flowers is sometimes a study in the subtlety of color, as in Ann's flower oil painting, Philadelphus III (oil, 12 x 16). Painting large flower portraits has given me the opportunity to explore what seem to be the nearly infinite shades and
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  • Art is a matter of infinite variation and the knowledge of a few tried-and-true essentials. As instructors, Scott Burdick and Susan Lyon bridge these two by focusing on sound technical practice in the larger context of what contemporary artist face working today--and the tools that are at our disposal
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  • Golden by Daniel Gerhartz, oil on canvas, 16 x 12. Since its inception in 2009, Weekend With the Masters Workshop & Conference has brought together some of the top instructors of representational art under one roof for a long weekend of workshops
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  • When John Hulsey and Ann Trusty told me the name of their website— The Artist’s Road —I smiled to myself because they got it so right! Art—painting, drawing, sculpting, all of it—is a path, a journey. Sometimes the path is smooth and things go right, and sometimes it is
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  • I interviewed Sadie Valeri on her unusual wax paper paintings months and months ago, but since then I've been keeping an eye on her. She's got great spirit, enviable talent, and she's just super nice! Little did I know that her sweet exterior
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  • The Gowanus Ballroom brought together installation art, contemporary sculpture, and realist painting. Every once in a while, I get to do something that is comes uniquely from the place where I’ve chosen to live—Brooklyn. My studio is in Gowanus
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  • Summit by Odd Nerdrum, oil painting, 2000, 93 x 88. Odd Nerdrum: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Odd Nerdrum was born in Hälsingborg, Sweden, in 1944. He was a student at The Academy of Art in Oslo at the time when Modernism made its delayed
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  • Up the Block by Rose Frantzen, oil painting, 40 x 50. Rose Frantzen: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Rose Frantzen 's peers hold her in especially high regard as an artist's artist. In her 25 years as a full-time painter, she has also gained
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  • Lea Colie Wight: Weekend With the Masters Instructor "From time to time you notice something unexpectedly beautiful in the most ordinary person; the overlooked corner will tell the story of the people not present; something will tug at you and you
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  • Glass Study 3 by Stephen Early, oil painting on masonite, 7 x 5. Stephen Early: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Artist Stephen Early began his art education at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia. He has received many notable portrait
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  • The Den by Scott Waddell, oil painting, 20 x 16. Scott Waddell: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Scott Waddell was born and raised in Central Florida. He received his B.F.A. from Florida State University. After college, Waddell spent the next several
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  • Venus Pregnant by Steven Assael, oil painting, 72 x 48, 2002. Steven Assael: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Artist Steven Assael was born in New York City in 1957. He attended Pratt Institute and presently teaches at The School of Visual Arts, in
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  • Breton Wash Basin by Edward Minoff, oil painting. Edward Minoff: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Edward Minoff graduated with honors from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Throughout his high-school and college years he studied painting
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  • Portrait of His Holiness, John Paul II by Nelson Shanks, 2001, oil painting on canvas, 54 x 50. Nelson Shanks: Weekend With the Masters Instructor One of the most sought after teachers and portrait painters in the world and founder of the post-graduate
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  • Persian Archer by Dan Thompson, 18 x 28, oil painting, 2004. Dan Thompson: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Dan Thompson was born in Alexandria, Virginia, and graduated from the Corcoran School of Art, in Washington, DC. He earned his M.F.A. from the
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  • Untitled by Daniel Sprick, 2006, 24 x 24, oil painting. Daniel Sprick: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Daniel Sprick was born in Little Rock, Arkansas. He studied at the Froman School of Art and The National Academy of Design and received his B.F
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  • Seascape by Ray Roberts, oil painting. Ray Roberts: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Ray Roberts is best known for his seascapes, figurative work, and majestic views of California and the Southwest, and is one of California's most respected plein
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  • The Love on the Road by Ron Hicks, oil painting. Ron Hicks: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Ron Hicks grew up in Columbus, Ohio, and was introduced to art at an early age under the influence of his artist mother. Continuing to pursue drawing through
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  • Seated Figure by Dan McCaw, 24 x 18, oil painting. Dan McCaw: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Dan McCaw was born in 1942 and raised in Montana and during his academic art career attended the Montana Institute of Technology, in Butte Montana; Academy
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  • Youth by David A. Leffel, oil painting, 15 x 13 1/2. David Leffel: Weekend With the Masters Instructor David A. Leffel is widely recognized as one of the most accomplished representational artists today and is often referred to as a living Old Master
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  • Pastel painter and oil painter Albert Handell. Albert Handell: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Pastelist and oil painter Albert Handell was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1937. At an early age, a favorite activity of his was drawing with chalks on
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  • Red Carnations with Ming Rice Bowl by Jacqueline Kamin, oil painting, 20 x 16. Jacqueline Kamin: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Born in 1950 in Washington, DC, Jacqueline Kamin received her formal art education from the Corcoran Museum School in
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  • Skylar in Blue by Jeremy Lipking, oil painting, 16 x 12, 2010. Jeremy Lipking: Weekend With the Masters Instructor In a remarkably short period of time, Jeremy Lipking has emerged as one of the country's premier oil painters. His talent, which rivals
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  • Connecticut Yankee Spring by George Gallo, 20 x 24, oil painting. George Gallo: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Award-winning writer, director, and painter George Gallo is capturing the hearts of both the general public and artist-audiences everywhere
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  • Spring Dance by Nancy Guzik, 12 x 20, oil painting. Nancy Guzik: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Throughout her career in art, Nancy Guzik has been quietly perfecting not only her skills but also the focus of her work. The result on the surface of
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  • Sublime Order by Daniel Pinkham, oil painting. Daniel Pinkham: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Born in Los Angeles, Daniel Pinkham has been a principal force in the resurgence of plein air painting in California and throughout the country. Pinkham
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  • Approaching Noise (in progress) by David Jon Kassan, oil painting on wood panel, 40 x 34. David Jon Kassan: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Following his initial drawing studies at University of the Arts, in Philadelphia, David Jon Kassan attended
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  • Untitled by Robin Frey, oil painting, 14 x 14, 2008. Robin Frey: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Artist Robin Frey grew up in Sarasota, Florida, taking art classes as a child at the Ringling School of Art. She received her B.F.A. from Eastern Mennonite
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  • Maya with Guitar by Susan Lyon, oil painting, 12 x 9. Susan Lyon: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Susan Lyon studied painting at the American Academy of Art and the Palette & Chisel Academy of Fine Arts, both in Chicago. It is there she first
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  • Morro Bay Rock, Near Cambria by C.W. Mundy, oil painting on linen, 16 x 20. C.W. Mundy: Weekend With the Masters Instructor C.W. Mundy, an American impressionist, was born in 1945 and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana. He graduated with a B.F.A. from Ball
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  • Dawn, High Tide-Navesink River by Skip Whitcomb, oil painting on linen, 10 x 20. Skip Whitcomb: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Born in 1946, M.W. Skip Whitcomb has been interested in art since his childhood on a ranch near Sterling, Colorado. However
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  • A Wind to Ward Off Dreams by Jean-Pierre Roy, 58 x 68, oil painting, 2010. Jean-Pierre Roy: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Jean-Pierre Roy is an artist and teacher currently living and working in New York City. Born in Santa Monica in 1974, Roy pursued
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  • Santa Catalina Island by Kevin Macpherson, oil painting, 30 x 50. Kevin Macpherson: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Kevin Macpherson is one of the country's leading plein air painters and is highly respected among collectors and fellow artists
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  • Throughout his career, Richard Schmid has promoted art education through his books, articles, workshops, seminars, and television presentations. Richard Schmid: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Richard Schmid was born in Chicago, Illinois in 1934.
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  • Stringbeans by Morgan Weistling, oil painting, 30 x 26. Morgan Weistling: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Well known for his paintings of early American pioneer life, Morgan Weistling began his art career as a movie-poster illustrator. While still
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  • Window II by Alyssa Monks, oil painting, 2011, 48 x 36. Alyssa Monks: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Born 1977 in Ridgewood, New Jersey, Alyssa Monks began oil painting when she was just a child. Later, when she embarked on her academic career, she
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  • Sunlit Birch by Frank Serrano, oil on canvas, 12 x 12. Frank Serrano: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Contemporary landscape artist and plein air painter Frank M. Serrano was born in Los Angeles on November 29, 1967. He developed an early interest
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  • Thinking Man by Jacob Collins, oil painting, 30 x 20, 2004. Jacob Collins: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Jacob Collins is a leading figure in the contemporary revival of classical painting. He earned a B.A. in history from Columbia College and attended
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  • Market Colors by Scott Burdick, oil on canvas. Scott Burdick: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Scott Burdick was born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1967, where his mother and father encouraged his interest in art from an early age. "I spent a lot of
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  • Light at Sunset by Joseph McGurl, oil painting, 24 x 36. Joseph McGurl: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Joseph McGurl has been referred to as one of the acknowledged leaders in the current American landscape painting arena. This has been confirmed
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  • Handline Hook by Stephen Scott Young, watercolor painting, 2010, 10 1/2 x 19 1/2. Stephen Scott Young: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Stephen Scott Young grew up in St. Augustine, Florida, and studied at the Ringling College of Art and Design, in
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  • Vermont Farmhouse by Clayton Beck, oil painting. Clayton Beck: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Clayton J. Beck III studied at the American Academy of Art and the Palette & Chisel Academy of Fine Arts, in Chicago, and launched his career as a professional
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  • Self-Portrait by Daniel Graves, oil on canvas, 2007. Daniel Graves: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Daniel Graves , born in Rochester, New York in 1949, is an oil painter, etcher, and founder and director of The Florence Academy of Art, Florence,
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  • Dave by Carolyn Anderson, oil painting, 16 x 12. Carolyn Anderson: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Carolyn Anderson , a nationally recognized artist, is an accomplished pastelist and oil painter. Born and raised in the Chicago area, Anderson attended
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  • Vineyard Melody by Camille Przewodek, 16 x 20, oil on canvas. Camille Przewodek: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Camille Przewodek is a plein air colorist based in Petaluma, California, who received her B.F.A. in illustration from the Academy of Art
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  • Nouveau by Daniel Gerhartz , oil painting. Daniel Gerhartz: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Daniel F. Gerhartz was born in Wisconsin in 1965, where he now lives with his wife Jennifer and their four children. His interest in art piqued at an early
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  • Morning Light Crystal Cove , by Joe Paquet, oil painting on linen. Joseph Paquet: Weekend With the Masters Instructor Joseph Paquet received his Bachelors of Fine Art at the School of Visual Arts, in New York City, and had the good fortune of being mentored
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  • The American Artist Weekend With the Masters events and art workshops are an opportunity to learn how to paint at the hands of some of the most inspiring, skilled oil painting artists, watercolorists, and draftsmen working today. Their artistic abilities
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  • Wilson uses the visual world as a lexicon of poetic images, as in his painting, Mary . In the 19th century, painters depicted modern life, embracing the “real” and eschewing narrative subjects and symbolism. Now, modern figure painters are
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  • Here's John using his heavy-weight watercolor gear while painting in Colorado. Through trial and error, over the years, we have figured out how to pack for our foot-powered plein-air painting adventures. We like to keep our heavy-duty Eagle Creek
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  • Bonita Williams Goldberg (her painting, Not Over Yet , above), is known as a Georgia Peach. She routinely sends new clients to her representatives, and she rotates consistently beautiful works in and out of her galleries. Artists love to gossip about
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  • Sometimes in making a small study for a larger oil painting, an artist will sketch in certain areas very loosely. It's almost as if she says to herself, "and there's some other stuff that fills in this area of the composition, but I'll think about that later." With the set of small
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  • Study for Leaves of Grass . All works by Patricia Watwood. With the image of a female figure reading in the summer grass in mind, I began to develop my oil painting , Leaves of Grass . I started with a preparatory drawing. I work with models and from
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  • Measure First, Draw Second; The Pathway to Great Compositions; Make Every ?Brushstroke Count; Learn How Top Artists Paint; How the Academic Technique can Work for You
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  • Point Lobos , oil, 12 x 16. All works by Matt Smith . Have you ever had a moment where you’ve stumbled on something unexpected and you think to yourself, “What a find!” That was so me a few days ago. I read an amazing Q&A that one
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  • Water is perhaps one of the more challenging subjects to paint convincingly in a plein air landscape painting. Whether one is inspired by the ocean, a river, or a pond or lake, each subject requires a studied familiarity and often distinctly different paint handling. Here are a just a few tips that we
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  • Margaret Krug, painter, writer for American Artist , and author of An Artist Handbook: Materials and Techniques, is teaching a one-of-a-kind program, Painting on Panels , from August 12-26 in Spannocchia, Italy. The scope of the workshop is traditional
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  • Leah , oil on canvas, 2010, 24 x 20. The Sicilian Expedition , oil on canvas, 2010, 60 x 40. They say that there are two kinds of painter: color painters, and the other kind--the kind that focuses on form, tone, and line. I'm that "other"
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  • 10 Keys To Making Accurate Judgments; Use Measurements & Simple Shapes for Better Portraits; Learn Variations of Impressionist Painting; 4 Stages Of Successful Plein Air Paintings
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  • For a while now, I have been exploring narrative themes. This is what R. H. Ives Gammell called “poetical pictures.” In the 19th century, this was commonly referred to as “history painting”, but by history they did not just mean world events as we define the term. “Poetical
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  • Study for Pandora , oil on canvas, 2010. All works by Patricia Watwood. For the past six months, I have been working away at a new series of figure paintings. Over the next weeks and months, I will tell you more about each of them, and the steps involved
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  • When we start making art, we don't start from a position of, "I want to paint like so-and-so," or not even, necessarily, "I want to paint well." We should start from a position of, "I have a need to make art." This is an important principle; it gives us the strength
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  • Waiting for Supper , 18” x 35”, oil on canvas, 2010. All works by Patricia Watwood . Hello! I am delighted to begin this new venture with Artist Daily and start an ongoing conversation about my painting process and my thoughts on art. Most
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  • Imagine breaking down even the most complex painting into just a handful of shapes. Painter Ron Hicks has found that the process of painting a portrait can be intimidating, if not overwhelming, to even the most practiced painters because a lot of detail is often confused with what makes a successful
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  • Trying to capture the likeness of a person in a finite period of time and meeting the high expectations often associated with portraiture are far from effortless tasks. They take commitment and savvy to do well. Our eBook Oil Painting Lessons on How to Paint a Portrait: 15 Portrait Painting Techniques
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  • Reflect Your True Vision with Accurate Form Now you can paint the human form with the depth and detail it deserves – your artwork will come alive with this exciting special issue from American Artist: Portrait and Figure Painting Highlights Fall 2010. Improve the detail of your portraits with 100
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  • La Danse (I) by Henri Matisse, 1909, oil on canvas,102.4 x 153.9 in. I've always believed that art speaks most profoundly when it actually has something to say. Communicating with a viewer is a powerful opportunity, and The Peace Project engages artists
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  • Breakthroughs in our artistic practices often come with a change—of venue, of process, or even from within our own creative mindsets. Workshops offer the opportunity to step outside the studio, and suddenly we can see and evaluate from a completely different vantage point.
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  • Painting instructors often ask students to consider two important relationships between the colors squeezed out on their palettes: value and temperature. By that they are asking them to consider whether one color mixture is lighter or darker than another, and whether the mixtures tend to have a warm
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  • It’s often the case that when you live somewhere, you don’t take full advantage of the opportunities that the place affords, and only after leaving do you realize how valuable those opportunities were. This can be true for artists, who, after moving, may regret not utilizing a strong local
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  • I recently joined a gym in my neighborhood, with the hopes of working off some of those extra holiday pounds that seem to wear out their welcome around this time every year. My schedule is pretty busy, so I try to streamline my visits, making a beeline
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  • I normally work from plein air sketches or my imagination, but this scene I photographed while on vacation in Costa Rica was just too beautiful to pass up. As most artists do when working from a photo, I made adjustments to the composition to better suit
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  • I recently met an artist who said, completely nonchalantly, “I never sketch, I never throw out a painting, and I’m always pleased with my final work.” If only we could all be so lucky! Sometimes when I’m writing a drawing basics
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  • Our newest free eBook, “24 Tips to Learn How to Paint a Plein Air Landscape,” is now available to download, and in it you’ll find tips on how to get started working en plein air and how to improve your en plein air painting technique
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  • By subtly layering pastel, Marlene Wiedenbaum creates a luscious and convincing sense of the world.
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  • I admit that I am not one who adores painting on location. If the truth be known, when I visit a national park, I'd rather be exploring and walking around—taking photos of everything that strikes my interest. Oh yes, I've paid my dues by
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  • When I first moved to New York City about a dozen years ago, I drew my father's face from memory quite a lot. It usually wasn't a good depiction at all, but occasionally it resulted in a decent drawing of a handsome man — which reminds me
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  • When I meet artists at a workshop or at a convention, they often comment that I must be a highly organized person. Upon hearing this, I laugh inwardly and reply, “I'm organized in my thoughts but not with my stuff.”
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  • Emerging artist Daniel James Keys couldn’t enroll at an art school, but he used every other available means to educate himself as an artist, to connect with other painters, and to promote his artwork. His experience proves that with determination, support, and computer savvy, artists can make significant
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  • The Table of Contents for the Summer 2009 issue of Workshop magazine.
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  • During a recent workshop in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, William Jameson provided instruction in plein air oil painting, but he knew it was just as important to offer encouragement and direction to students while they enjoyed the experience.
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  • Steve Doherty asks readers if they have experienced bickering or tension between competitive artists at art association meetings, and compares those rivalries to the ones that occured among artists in 16th century in Venice, Italy.
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  • Artists from across the country submitted their work for consideration in the 2009 American Artist Cover Competition. After an extensive selection process Suzanne Eisler’s Still Life With Butterfly was chosen as the winning image. It is presented here, along with artwork from the nine other finalists
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  • Mary Sipp-Green bases her oil landscapes on sketches, memories, and imagination, and she makes careful notations about color combinations that capture her feelings about a particular time and place. Nevertheless, there is a point in the creative process at which she has to “get out of the way”
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  • Steve Doherty talks about landscape painting, and shows a video of a recent painting excursion in New Orleans.
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  • Recent visits to still life painting workshop and exhibitions has reminded Steve how still lifes provide an opportunity to share some aspect of our lives with those who look at our drawings and paintings. Here, he expands on that thought, and asks about the ways you compose, execute, and personalize
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  • Q: I want to rework an oil painting that has been sitting for more than a year. How should I go about it? A: Begin by cleaning the canvas surface. Wipe away any dust particles with a cotton cloth or with cotton balls. If any dirt is evident, remove it
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  • Q: Can I varnish my oil painting as soon as it is dry to the touch? I use a medium made of Damar medium, linseed oil, and turpentine, and have finished a commission that needs to go to the client in one week. Would it be better to not varnish? A: An oil
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  • Q : What should I use for retouching? Are Liquin and linseed oil compatible on the same canvas? A : There are many products you can use to go back into your oil painting after it has dried. Winsor & Newton’s Liquin, which produces a matte finish
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  • Q : How often do I have to varnish an oil painting? How do I clean the painting before I apply new varnish? A : A final coat of varnish—on a finished and completely dry oil painting—can last hundreds of years. Sennelier makes two kinds of
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  • Q: I’m working on an oil portrait, but I’m having trouble getting the right tones. What colors do you recommend? A: Painting a successful portrait is similar to painting a successful still life. Assuming that the subject has one major light
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  • Q: One of my students wishes to mount some paper cutouts from magazines onto her oil painting on stretched canvas. What would be the best way to adhere these, and what is the best way to seal them once the surface is dry? A: If the surface is dry, your
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  • Q: I just finished an oil portrait for a client, and I need to varnish it. I usually use gloss dammar spray for last-minute varnishes. I know I shouldn’t wait until the last minute, but what would you recommend under the circumstances? A: There
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  • Q: I recently varnished an oil painting with matte varnish, but I am unhappy with the finish (Grumbacher). Can I varnish the painting again with a glossy varnish? A: You can revarnish the painting, but to be safe you should use the same brand of varnish
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  • Q: How do I tell if a painting has been done in oil or acrylic? A: For the most part, an acrylic painting will dry leaving a flat finish and an oil painting will dry leaving signs of brushstrokes. On the other hand, there are many mediums that can be
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  • Q: Could you please tell me how to clean an oil painting without damaging the paint? A: Are we talking about maintenance or restoration? There is no system of cleaning that can be applied to all situations, which is why the diagnosis and treatment of
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  • Q: How can I age an oil painting surface to make it look old? A: Very old paintings can yellow over time. Colors may also fade if they are not archival. Without damaging your artwork, you may want to thinly glaze your artwork with either burnt umber or
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  • Q: An oil painting I finished a couple of years ago has developed a section that has cracked and fallen off. I never use any medium except turpentine, and always paint "fat over lean.” Since I paint for a living, I'm more than a little
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  • Q: Is it necessary to prime plywood before painting on it with oil? Couldn't I apply a layer of oil paint directly to the board, let it dry, and then start painting on it? A: Painting directly on plywood can prove problematic. Plywood is porous and
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  • Q: I paint in oil and acrylic, and I've successfully used an acrylic final varnish for both. I seem to have misplaced this final varnish recipe, but I believe that it was part gloss and part matte. Can you recommend a recipe of this type for me? A
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  • The Table of Contents for the April 2009 issue of American Artist magazine.
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  • Michael Graves may be best known now for designing household items and iconic buildings, but he has roots in traditional rendering, as a 2007 book featuring architectural renderings from a 1960 sketchbook shows.
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  • Many pastelists consider their pieces to be paintings. Here at American Artist, we have tried to steer clear of the debate on whether pastel is a drawing medium or a painting medium, although when put against the wall and poked in the chest, we'll
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  • Mark Leithauser collaborated with his brother, the poet Brad Leithauser, on a series of books that expanded his imaginative powers, leading him to consider a multitude of new subjects. A 2002–2003, graphite drawing. All artwork this article courtesy
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  • One of the most useful aspects of painting workshops is the personalized critiques offered by knowledgeable instructors. Now you can get this advantage anytime through the American Artist Critique Blog. Through this blog, you can get commentary and suggestions
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  • The Muscarelle Museum of Art, in Williamsburg, Virginia, will be the initial site for the national tour of the major exhibition of Old Master paintings. The Dutch Italianates: Seventeenth-Century Masterpieces From Dulwich Picture Gallery Through March
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  • Gallery owners tell me that it is always easier selling art of a personable artist than someone who is shy, argumentative, or self-absorbed. The dealers have to enjoy a cordial and professional relationship with the artist; and they need to know that
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  • Francis Di Fronzo stopped working with paint brushes to create his own technique of “tapping the landscape into existence.” All Paths to War Lead Back to You (Part I) 2002, oil on panel, 48 x 48. Private collection. by Lynne Moss Perricelli
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  • John A. Parks examined the art of Giorgio Morandi in the December issue of American Artist . In one section, he asserted, "[His] paintings are a testimony to the act of something deeply contemplated. It is a kind of painting that has nothing to do
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  • The natural cycle of water and its place in the landscape is the focus of this exhibition at the Irvine Museum, in Irvine, California. All The Water That Will Ever Be, Is, Right Now Through January 17, 2009 The Irvine Museum Irvine, California (949) 476
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  • A collection of recent artwork by Jason Bryant, including large-scale oil paintings and smaller, more intricate portraits, will be presented in this exhibition at the Raandesk Gallery, in New York City. Someday, Maybe, Never 2008, oil on canvas, 40 x
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  • While packing to move into our new offices, I came across a self-portrait I painted several years ago that was lost in a stack of papers. I immediately recognized that the face was drawn inaccurately—an error I didn’t see at the time I created
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  • This Utah artist is drawn to figures and faces, and he works hard to balance his work-related duties with his love of traditional oil painting. Kaitlyn, 2007, oil on board, 14 x 18. All artwork this article collection the artist unless otherwise indicated
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  • In the November 2008 issue of American Artist, we discussed how John Falato enjoys introducing students to the nuts and bolts of watercolor painting. Here, we reproduce additional images of Falato's paintings. Autumn in Southford 2005, Casein on Masonite
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  • Connecticut artist John Falato primarily paints in oil, but he also enjoys introducing students to the nuts and bolts of watercolor in his exciting, fast-paced beginner classes. August Road 1983, watercolor, 21 1/8 x 16. All artwork this article private
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  • Connecticut artist John Falato primarily paints in oil, but he also enjoys introducing students to the nuts and bolts of watercolor in his exciting, fast-paced beginner classes. August Road 1983, watercolor, 21 1⁄8 x 16. All artwork this article
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  • When J.C. Airoldi left a successful career as a designer, she applied the same level of determination, practicality, hard work, and marketing skills that she used in her previous profession to creating and selling paintings. Gloucester Solitude 2008,
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  • Painting with watercolor requires an understanding of not only the paints themselves but also how to apply them. by James Toogood Breakers on a Rocky Coast 2005, watercolor, 24 x 18. Private collection. The predominate color in the water is Prussian blue
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  • Read the transcript from yesterday's live online chat with pastel artist Janet Monafo. 2008-06-09 11:00:12.0 Administrator: You have joined a chat with Janet Monafo, a top pastelist who has been highlighted in American Artist magazine. Feel free to
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  • During a recent workshop, New York artist Max Ginsburg showed students how to respond to the specific lighting effects they observed rather than to use premixed colors and repetitive procedures. by M. Stephen Doherty Ginsburg made adjustments to the balance
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  • This dynamic young artist believes anyone can learn the language of painting and use it to express themselves, which he proves in both short-term and extended workshops. by M. Stephen Doherty Baugh working directly on a student's canvas “There
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  • We chose 10 finalists for our Drawing Magazine Cover Competition—and then easily named William Rose the winner, as he best showcased the skill level and imagination of our readers. View the winners of the Watercolor magazine 2008 cover competiton
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  • During a recent plein air workshop in Southern France, Judith Carducci helped students who worked with pen-and-ink, pastel, watercolor, and oil colors. The unifying themes of the 10-day class were that drawing basics are a foundation of all media and
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  • During nearly 30 years of interviewing landscape artists for American Artist , M. Stephen Doherty has watched hundreds of painters use a variety of materials and techniques. Here, he takes the best of that gleaned knowledge and distills it into seven
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  • During a recent plein air workshop in Southern France, Judith Carducci helped students who worked with pen-and-ink, pastel, watercolor, and oil colors. The unifying themes of the 10-day class were that drawing is a foundation of all media and working
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  • This New York City artist has found that the more he understands the science of the elements in his still life scene, and the more carefully he executes his drawing and underpainting, the freer he can interpret the subject matter in the final stages to
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  • In the summer 2008 issue of Workshop, we discussed how Scott Tallman Powers was able to express strong emotions in oil paintings by first establishing a clear concept for the picture and then remaining focused on delivering that content to viewers. We
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  • In the Fall 2007 issue of Workshop magazine, we presented Daniel E. Greene's approach to teaching drawing and painting in art-school classes, short-term workshops, and filmed programs. Here we reproduce the article from the November 2007 issue of
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  • C.W. Mundy teaches his students to paint effective portraits. Here, we look more closely at his innovative technique for painting portraits from upside-down photographs in this step-by-step demonstration of Bourbon Street Chef, New Orleans. Step 1 Mundy
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  • In the Fall 2008 issue of Workshop magazine,we discussed how Dan Young helped both beginners and experienced painters develop their skills by showing them how to simplify forms, increase the sense of light, push background shapes into the distance, and
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  • Renowned photorealist painter Richard Estes will be showing more than 20 new paintings during this exhibition at the Marlborough Gallery, in New York City. Richard Estes October 14 through November 15 Marlborough Gallery New York, New York (212) 541-4900
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  • During the spring of 2008, 13 women painters from California, Nevada, and Utah gathered together in the Yosemite Valley to paint the national park for a week. Yosemite on Canvas: 13 Western Artists Paint the Park Through November 29 Knowlton Gallery Lodi
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  • In the summer 2008 issue of Workshop magazine, Frank Serrano discussed his approach as an artist and his methods as a teacher. Here we present his step-by-step demonstration Oak Study . Step 1 During his weekly landscape-painting workshop in Southern
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  • Artists Carl and Sandra Bryant use tiny pieces of glass to create intricate mosaic works of art. by Stephanie Kaplan Autumn Landscape by Sandra Bryant, 2006, glass mosaic, 24 x 32. Collection the artist. Mosaic Landscape by Sandra Bryant, 2005, glass
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  • This New York City artist paints landscapes, still lifes, and portraits that highlight the relationships between seemingly disparate objects. by Naomi Ekperigin This Situation 2006, oil, 20 x 16. All artwork this article collection the artist. Self-Portrait
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  • Denise LaRue Mahlke believes that being an artist is a calling that involves preserving, celebrating, and sharing in God’s creation. That’s one of the reasons she challenges herself to strive for excellence as a pastel painter and a teacher
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  • The method for preparing a canvas varies from artist to artist. This is primarily because there are several options to choose from in every phase of preparation. Here, we outline the choices available so that you can confidently begin to work in oil.
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  • This Florida-based artist paints still lifes in oil that hint at a human presence. Trio on Marble Block 2007, oil, 36 x 48. All artwork this article collection the artist unless otherwise indicated. by Naomi Ekperigin For 15 years, Arturo Samaniego’s
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  • Casey Baugh's step-by-step demonstration Red Scarf . Reference The model who posed for the three-hour demonstration. Step 1 After establishing the scale of the painted head and lightly indicating some of the features, Baugh applied strokes of oil
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  • In the spring 2008 issue of Workshop magazine, Colorado artist Ron Hicks discussed how breaking down his subjects into shapes, and capturing gradations of light in each, allow him to create the moody figurative and interior work he is best known for.
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  • In the summer 2008 issue of Workshop magazine, we discussed how Mary Anna Goetz's workshops address the tendencies students have to lose sight of the center of interest and to mix colors that are garishly overstated or inaccurate value assessments
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  • In an exhibition opening this month in New York City, Daniel E. Greene presents still-life and figure paintings inspired by the experiences and objects of his childhood. Those paintings allowed him to explore the themes of challenge, contrast, and competition
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  • This Massachusetts painter uses a closely controlled palette and open painting approach to create highly evocative visions of interiors and figures. by John A. Parks Family at Sundown 2005, oil on linen, 48 x 72. All artwork this article collection the
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  • Utah artist David Koch likes to bring elements of his state’s pioneer past into his computer-aided compositions. by Linda S. Price Crossing The Sweetwater 2002, oil on linen, 55 x 44. Collection Walt and Katie Gasser. Until David Koch won a competition
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  • Three painting friends exchanged photographs and then produced paintings of the same 15 subjects in an experiment designed to teach them about different approaches, challenge them to push beyond their comfort zone, and allow them to work on a common painting
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  • In the fall 2007 issue of Watercolor , Johnnie Liliedahl discussed Old Master approaches that help her students understand the basics of oil painting. Here, we present a demonstration for her painting Lady in White. Reference: A photograph of a model
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  • The vast array of materials and tools available to artists can make it difficult to determine which is best for rendering a certain subject. Even a traditional oil painter has a wealth of options and can choose from alkyds, water-soluble oils, and traditional
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  • In this online exclusive gallery, view more artwork by New York artist Max Ginsburg, one of the artists featured in the summer 2008 issue of Workshop magazine. Fabiana 2007, oil, 12 x 11¾. Collection the artist. Julie 2008, oil, 12 x 9. Collection
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  • The goal of this exhibition at the National Academy Museum, in New York City, is to dispel the image of Ralph Albert Blakelock as a “mad genius,” by demonstrating the value of his work and its influence on modern and contemporary artists.
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  • In the July/August 2008 issue of American Artist, we discussed Barbara Kassel's autobiographical interior paintings. In this online exclusive gallery, we juxtapose her interior and exterior paintings. Jim’s Fish House 2006, oil on Masonite,
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  • View more computer-aided paintings by David Koch, one of the artists featured in the September 2008 issue of American Artist. Breakfast Thoughts 2007, oil on linen, 20 x 16. Collection the artist. This Old Clock Tower 2003, oil on linen, 24 x 18. All
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  • In this online exclusive gallery, view more examples of plein air landscapes by Kevin Sanders, one of the artist featured in the September 2008 issue of American Artist. Ponte Vecchio 2006, oil, 18 x 24. All artwork this gallery private collection, unless
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  • Herrick adjusts the light mass on the ground below the children, and lightens the middle girl's face. I have been adding to the light mass on the ground below the kids. This may be overstated right now, but I can readjust this later. I also keyed
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  • The artist realizes that he needs to lighten the boy's shirt and face. I need to lighten the boy's face and shirt, and that means everything needs to be keyed up higher in the same way. It is a frustrating but necessary adjustment. About the Artist
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  • The Historical Society of the United States District Court has commissioned Herrick to paint a copy of an original Gilbert Stuart portrait for their collection. Another diversion—I'm in the process of copying an original Gilbert Stuart portrait
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  • Watch a landscape painting audio slideshow demonstration of Morgan Samuel Price's Last of the Roses (2:08). Price was one of the artists featured in the spring 2008 issue of Workshop magazine. Oil painting garden scene Posted to Artist Daily by Karyn
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  • The winner and semifinalists of our annual cover competition reveal how they created paintings that captured the attention of our judges. Frank J. Strazzulla Jr. Studio Interior 2003, oil, 18 x 14. Private collection “One of the compelling themes
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  • Midwestern artist Christopher Copeland paints the landscape that surrounds him, imbuing it with emotion and recording the transient moments that are often difficult to capture. by Naomi Ekperigin Midsummer Evening 2007, oil, 30 x 32. Private collection
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  • The artist takes a break from Of Scions and Sunlight to complete this portrait of a college president. I often have to interrupt one commission to finish another. Recently, I had to put aside Of Scions and Sunlight to complete this portrait of a college
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  • Herrick takes a break from this portrait to work on other projects. The client has been great—they were more concerned with getting the best painting than getting the finished piece at a particular time. But because the painting was taking up a
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  • In this installment of the demonstration, the artist works on the details in the portrait. The little girl was close to where I wanted her to be, but the older girl seemed a little too dark. I needed to add a white glaze over her just to send it in the
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  • In the next installment of the demonstration, Herrick works on the background. I needed to address the background foliage to establish a context for the portraits. Things were looking a little dark in the background, so I removed some paint that was just
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  • In the July/August 2008 issue of American Artist, we discussed how California-based artist Christopher Evans creates idyllic landscapes that communicate an extraordinary reverence for nature. We offer more of his paintings, with accompanying details,
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  • In the next installment of the demonstration, the artist tackles the boy's shorts and develops the highlights on the boy's face. I tackled the boy's shorts, organizing the color changes in reflections and shadows. Although the kids were wearing
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  • In the fourth installment of the demonstration, Herrick concentrates on the older girl in the painting. She was a bit of a challenge because I was sorting out her likeness from multiple reference photos. I wasn’t sure of her expression—in
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  • In the third installment of the demonstration, Herrick continues blocking in the portraits and begins to place a few notes of color on the canvas. I was just trying to find my way with this painting—locating bigger shapes and anchoring positions
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  • In the second installment of the demonstration, Herrick tones his canvas and begins blocking in the heads of the children. I didn’t do a drawing—I did most of my thinking with the camera and Photoshop, and then I just jumped right into things
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  • Follow Garth Herrick's entire demonstration from start to finish. Meeting the Client This came through an agent, a local representative of Portrait Source [a portrait broker]. I think the client found me in the agent’s portfolio. The couple
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  • Follow Garth Herrick's entire demonstration from start to finish. Meeting the Client This came through an agent, a local representative of Portrait Source [a portrait broker]. I think the client found me in the agent’s portfolio. The couple
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  • Urban landscape painter Scott Prior proves that a contemporary, “punk-rock” alternative to classical California subject matter can still produce moving and thought-provoking imagery. by James A. Metcalfe Island Life 2007, oil, 24 x 18. Courtesy
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  • In the fall 2007 issue of Workshop , Gayle Levée discussed how the underlying structure of a painting gives the finished work its strength. Here we present a demonstration for her painting Reflections in Gold . To read the feature article on Levée
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  • Over the next few months, we will keep you abreast of the progress made on a large portrait commission taken on by Garth Herrick, a Philadelphia-based artist featured in the June 2008 issue of American Artist. In this first installment, the artist discusses
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  • Heralded as a rebel of the Romantic movement, Gustave Courbet is today considered one of the first to propel Realism into the modern world. by John A. Parks The Desperate Man 1844–1845, oil, 17¾ x 21?. Private collection. Born in 1819, Gustave
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  • In the December 2007 issue of American Artist, Joseph Gyurcsak used the work of Giorgio Morandi and Paul Cézanne to help illustrate lessons on developing paintings. Here, we present a step by step demonstration of his painting Subtle Grays . The
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  • Six top artists combined observation, investigation, and invention to respond to the encompassing reality of the landscape. They will be exhibiting their sketches and studio paintings together for the first time this summer. by M. Stephen Doherty The
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  • In the June 2008 issue of American Artist, we explored how urban landscape painter Scott Prior proves that a contemporary, "punk-rock" alternative to classical California subject matter can still produce moving and thought-provoking imagery
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  • In the June 2008 issue of American Artist , we explored how Gustave Courbet is considered one of the first to propel Realism into the modern world. We offer more examples of his realist approach in this online exclusive gallery. The Preparation of the
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  • In the May 2008 issue of American Artist, we discussed how Nancy Switzer pushes the possibilities of surface and color to create rich and spectacular paintings. Here, we offer more of her oil paintings in this online exclusive gallery. Blue Scad Melt
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  • Because most of his Pennsylvania landscapes begin with his photographs, Peter Fiore considers his paintings reorchestrations of reality. “A painting is what I envision,” he says, “not necessarily what nature gave me.” by Linda
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  • For almost 20 years, Jimmy Sanders has set specific goals for his art education, the types of paintings he creates, and the projects he undertakes. “Goals are dreams with deadlines,” he says. “They are important to realist painters who
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  • In this online exclusive gallery, view more oil landscapes by May 2008 American Artist featured artist Peter Fiore. February Meadow 2007, oil on linen, 18 x 24. Courtesy Travis Gallery, New Hope, Pennsylvania. Fiore believes beautiful skies can make even
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  • Having completed more than 400 watercolor portraits of children, Jane Paul Angelhart knows how to avoid potential problems with muddy paints, uncharacteristic poses, nervous children, and overbearing mothers. Like what you read? Become a Watercolor subscriber
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  • California-based artist Don Gray paints large-scale murals and applies his traditional training to the depiction of historical events. He brings to this work a sense of spontaneity and freedom that is fueled by the creation of a new small painting every
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  • For me, the goal of landscape painting is to paint stirring images that engage and inspire viewers, and this is more likely to happen when I use information from a variety of sources. by Steve Armes Sketch for Sierra Blanca 2005, oil, 8 x 10. All artwork
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  • In the early 20th century, Johannes Itten’s theories on color changed the way artists and scientists viewed the spectrum of colors in the world around them. Here, we outline some of Itten’s basic tenets—many of which are still employed
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  • This Bahamas-based artist seeks to capture the natural landscape right outside his front door. Evening Exuma 2000, oil on canvas, 24 x 30. Collection the artist. Artist Allen Webb has two loves: tennis and painting. As a professional tennis player and
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  • We present the semifinalists in the pastel category. by Karen Stanger Johnston Changing Channels by Mike Barret Kolasinski, 2007, pastel on archival foam board, 12 x 24. First Place: Mike Barret Kolasinski Chicago artist Mike Barret Kolasinski is passionate
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  • In the April 2008 issue of American Artist, we discussed how Christine Lafuente's still lifes and plein air landscapes are oriented toward achieving a color harmony that captures the play of light across the forms. In this online exclusive gallery
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  • Michael Albrechtsen achieves a stronger impression of both the emotional and physical aspects of a landscape by standing back from his easel and thinking carefully about what he sees. by M. Stephen Doherty Cool and Wet 2007, oil, 40 x 30. Collection the
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  • In the April 2008 issue of American Artist, we discussed how Maryland artist Abigail McBride is still acquiring skills to help her successfully build paintings more than 20 years after she started studying art seriously. We present more of McBride's
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  • Many of the great teachers who trained Daniel Graves were featured in American Artist in the 1970s, while he and his students have been profiled in more recent issues. As the magazine celebrates its 70th anniversary, we examine the academic art education
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  • View more of examples of how March 2008 American Artist featured artist Kim Casebeer develops her oil paintings in this online exclusive gallery. Autumn Evening at Buffalo Mound 2007, oil, 36 x 48. Private collection. Evening Along Buffalo Fork 2007,
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  • An exhibition at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, in Philadelphia, aims to present Cecilia Beaux for the great painter she was: one of the most accomplished among men and woman alike. by Lynne Moss Perricelli Self-Portrait 1894, oil, 25 x 20
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  • Likening her process for painting flowers to that of her portraits, Maine artist Susan Van Campen puts patience, skill, and heart into interpreting the life of a flower. by Allison Malafronte Bouquet, June 2006, watercolor, 42 x 29½. All artwork
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  • This French master teaches us much about contours, portraiture, and how to draw people. by Mark G. Mitchell Portrait of Charles- François Mallet 1809, graphite, 10 9/16 x 8 5/16. Collection The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois. So that’s
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  • After a successful 20-year career as a watercolorist in Tulsa, Patrick Gordon moved to New York to create large, multipanel oil paintings of flowers. “I’ve never worked harder or had more fun than I have in the past few years,” he explains
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  • In this online exclusive gallery, view more paintings from the Cecilia Beaux traveling exhibition, which is on view at its final venue at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts , in Philadelphia, February 2 through April 13. New England Woman 1895
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  • In the February 2008 issue of American Artist, we discussed how although Thomas Cordell's subject matter often reflects his architectural training, he doesn't construct his paintings as he would his buildings. We offer more of his cityscapes in
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  • In the February 2008 issue of American Artist, the Plein Air Painters of Chicago revealed both the pitfalls and pleasures that landscape painters often encounter when painting in an urban setting. In this online exclusive gallery, we showcase several
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  • Many great landscape drawings were created as preparatory studies, educational exercises, or informational journals and not as finished works of art. We can now study those freely made graphic images for evidence of the drawing essentials , ideas, and
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  • The recent surge in organized critique groups around the country reflects artists’ increasing desire for informed responses to their work. Few people like negative criticism, but everyone wants feedback. by Daniel Grant The recent surge in organized
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  • In the February 2008 issue of American Artist, Steve Armes discussed how his goal for landscape painting was to paint stirring images that engage and inspire viewers. In this online exclusive gallery, we present more of his oil landscapes. Above Lake
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  • Oregon artist Scott Gellatly knows that a broad knowledge of materials and techniques can help painters realize their visions. That’s why he now travels around the country on behalf of Gamblin Artist’s Colors teaching painters how to give
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  • by Linda S. Price Anderson Homestead 2002, watercolor, 18½ x 22½. Private collection. Kolb looked for diagonals to create drama in this composition. Vermont artist Kathleen Kolb is not a fussy painter. She doesn’t need sunny skies
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  • There are few American painters who were as celebrated, successful, or influential as Frederic Edwin Church. by M. Stephen Doherty Twilight, a Sketch by Frederic Edwin Church, 1858, oil, 8¼ x 12¼. Collection Olana State Historic Site, Hudson
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  • Two masters of still life painting have much to teach us about developing our paintings. by Joseph Gyurcsak Ochre & Blue Gray 2007, oil, 12 x 16. Collection the artist. Two of the most admired masters of still life painting are the Italian artist
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  • Oil painter Debra Teare mixes the best of conventional trompe l’oeil techniques with her own modern sensibilities to make her illusionistic pieces. by James A. Metcalfe Everything Nice 2007, oil, 13 x 10. Collection Christine E. Lynn. For more than
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  • Most artists are familiar with the axiom that states there is art created for commerce’s sake and art created for art’s sake, but few are able to find a happy medium between the two. by Daniel Grant Most artists are familiar with the axiom
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  • For New York City artist Ellen Buselli, painting is centered on translating what she sees to canvas, which is why she finds observing and understanding the nature of color and light so important. by Linda S. Price Classical Light 2007, oil on linen, 20
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  • In the January 2008 issue of American Artist, New York City artist Ellen Buselli explains why she finds observing and understanding the nature of light and color so important. Her attention to light and color is also evident in the still lifes presented
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  • This Dominican-born artist uses rich color to create an exotic and intense experience of the world. by John A. Parks Standing Nude Study 1988, oil, 20 x 16. All artwork this article collection the artist unless otherwise indicated. Although he has long
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  • The California Art Club recently held its 96th Annual Gold Medal Juried Exhibition at the Pasadena Museum of California Art, in Pasadena, California. California Art Club Announces Award Winners The California Art Club recently held its 96th Annual Gold
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  • Laguna College of Art & Design, in Laguna Beach, California, recently announced the winners of its Student Juried Exhibition. Laguna College of Art & Design Exhibition Winners Announced Laguna College of Art & Design , in Laguna Beach, California
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  • We present the semifinalists in the colored pencil category. by Karen Stanger Johnston Ya Reckin by Rosemarie Rush, 2006, colored pencil, 16 x 20. First Place: Rosemarie Rush Like most of the images of Western life by California artist Rosemarie Rush
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  • Santa Fe artist Doug Higgins has many strategies for directing the viewer’s eye toward the center of interest and leading it around the painting. by Linda S. Price Painting at Smith Cove 2004, oil, 20 x 24. All artwork this article collection the
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  • We present the semifinalists in the oil category. by Karen Stanger Johnston Hyacinth (and the McCoy Pot) by Ellen Buselli, 2006, oil on linen, 12 x 16. Private collection. First Place: Ellen Buselli Ellen Buselli’s favorite subject is the still
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  • Prud’hon drew from the figure throughout his career, and now those “académies” anchor his reputation. How did he draw such stunning figure studies? by Ephraim Rubenstein Standing Nude charcoal heightened with white chalk on blue
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  • Ingres taught us much about contours and portraiture. Here, we offer an excerpt from the feature about how the artist's use of graphite on smooth white paper was ahead of his time. by Mark G. Mitchell Portrait of La Principessa Fiano 1817, graphite
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  • Former woodcarver Suzanne LaPrade is very much interested in the underlying structures that make up her pastel and oil subjects. by Karen Frankel The Heiress 2006, oil, 48 x 30. Collection Mr. and Mrs. P.T. Farrel. The woods behind Suzanne LaPrade’s
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  • A look at the anatomical structure of the ear, and some helpful tips on how to draw people . by Ephraim Rubenstein Maddie 2005, pastel on sanded board, 19 x 15. In this portrait of my daughter, Madeleine, her ear is lit very dramatically from behind.
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  • The artists of the Ashcan School, known for their raw depictions of urban life, shared a background in newspaper and magazine illustration that shaped their drawing and painting styles. by Edith Zimmerman Far From the Fresh Air Farm by William Glackens
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  • In the November 2007 issue of American Artist, we discussed how Susan Goetz and Robert Schneider, who are husband and wife, studied with some of the same instructors and developed techniques based on similar historical precedents; yet they focus on different
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  • In the November 2007 issue of American Artist, we discussed how Richard Baumann relies on two complementary colors to develop his landscapes and interior scenes, applying mixtures of them around the canvas so he can orchestrate the relationship between
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  • Robert Gamblin developed his art career and paint manufacturing business by learning how quality paints are made and how they can be used safely and effectively in the studio. by M. Stephen Doherty Evening Makena 2007, oil, 24 x 18. Collection the artist
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  • This Maryland oil painter, renowned for her portraits, seeks the essence of her subjects and settles for nothing less. by Janice F. Booth Evening Pasture oil on linen, 24 x 30. Collection the artist. When we remember a friend’s face, we don’t
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  • A current exhibition in Stockton, California, shows how members of the Plein-Air Painters of America (PAPA) interpret their on-site studies to make larger studio paintings. We asked eight of the exhibiting painters to share their approaches with American
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  • In the October 2007 issue of American Artist, we profile eight of the Plein-Air Painters of American (PAPA) members who will be part of the group's 21st annual exhibition and sale, titled "From the Heart: Plein-Air Painters of American"
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  • In the October 2007 issue of American Artist, we explored how Maryland oil painter Carolyn Egeli, renowned for her portraits, seeks the essence of her subjects and settles for nothing less. In this online exclusive gallery, we present more of her landscape
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  • Nearly 60 views of Malibu created by members of the California Art Club are featured in this exhibition, which explores not only the city’s picturesque scenery but also the enduring California plein air landscape tradition. by Michael Zakian Driving
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  • I n the October 2007 issue of American Artist, we discussed how beginning his career as a fine artist relatively late in life affected Roger Dale Brown's career goals and painting strategies. Classics 2006, oil, 30 x 40. Collection Mr. and Mrs. Greg
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  • View a gallery of portraits by acclaimed portrait painter Dawn Whitelaw, who will lead an online chat on May 30 at 3 p.m. EST about how to identify and fix problems in your paintings. Carol oil, 24 x 18. All artwork this gallery private collection. Colton
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  • This California artist pursues an aggressive, take-no-prisoners approach to plein air painting. by John A. Parks Dos Roses 2006, oil, 12 x 9. Courtesy Red Piano Art Gallery, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Ken Auster uses loads of thick paint and
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  • In the December 2006 issue of American Artist, Kansas artist Elizabeth Pruitt was most concerned with expressing the emotions a subject evokes in a still-life painting. In contrast, we present 12 of her portraits in this online exclusive gallery. Michelle
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  • Oil painter Matthew Mitchell adapts Rembrandt’s working method for his portraits spotlighting Americans serving in civilian or military roles in Iraq and Afghanistan. by Karen Frankel Alexander Scott Arredondo 2005, oil on linen, 30 x 26. All artwork
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  • Veteran California oil painter Meredith Brooks Abbott explains how she has maintained a devotion to the routine of painting every day, with continually improving results. by Molly Siple Bird Refuge 2006, oil on linen, 11 x 11. All artwork this article
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  • We present more examples of Meredith Brooks Abbott's oil paintings in this online exclusive gallery. Strawberries 2006, oil on linen, 16 x 20. All artwork this gallery private collection unless otherwise indicated. Wild Flowers for the Wedding 2006
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  • In the September 2007 issue of American Artist, we discussed how Kathleen Kolb worked in oil and watercolor to create country landscapes. To supplement the watercolors highlighted in the print feature, we show Kolb's oil landscapes in this online
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  • Traditionally trained artist Sarah Lamb uses her passion for the kitchen to bring a new vitality to the art of the still life. Mousse au Chocolat 2005, oil on linen, 20 x 32. All artwork this article private collection unless otherwise indicated. by John
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  • In the September 2007 issue of American Artist, we explored how after years of enjoying the immediacy and energy of painting landscapes outdoors, Californian Pat Kelly brought the same materials and techniques into the studio to paint still lifes. Here
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  • Sometimes painful experiences can cause people to lose interest in activities that once brought them incredible fulfillment. That’s not the case with Nashville artist Camille Engel. Her trials have actually driven her back to her original passion
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  • Read an excerpt from the July/August American Artist feature on still-life artist Emphraim Rubenstein. by William Chapman Sharpe Self-portrait With Vanitas Symbols by David Bailly, 1651, oil, 25½ x 38?. Collection Stedelijk Museum de Lakenhal,
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  • One of the top artists specializing in children’s portraits recently offered workshops for both oil and pastel painters. Although some of Wende Caporale’s specific instructions related to one medium or the other, her general discussions about
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  • The two most important aspects of taking proper care of oil painting paintbrushes are storage and cleaning. by Bob Bahr An example of a bright brush. Photo courtesy Loew-Cornell. Storing Brushes Always store your brushes flat. It’s best if they
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  • In the July/August issue of American Artist, we explored how portrait artist Leonid Gervits takes a stand for the legitimacy of the fine draftsmanship and multilayered technique 400 years after Velázquez. Here, we offer an excerpt from the feature
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  • We present an excerpt from the July/August American Artist feature on Philip R. Jackson that discusses how Jackson achieves his dramatic still-life setups. To read more features like this, check out the July/August 2007 issue of American Artist. by James
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  • Celebrated for its extraordinary collection of European art, The Phillips Collection is also home to some of the most distinguished examples of American painting. American Impressionism: Paintings From The Phillips Collection Through September 16 The
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  • Read the transcript from our online chat with artist-instructor Dan Thompson. If you have more thoughts to share, chat with your peers on Artists' Forum , and check back for more online chats with featured artists. 2007-06-13 12:00:02.0 Administrator
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  • Watercolor Watercolor pigment is sold in cakes, tubes, and pencils. The binding agent for the pigment is usually gum arabic. Many artists prefer watercolor colors in tubes because they allow more-fluid application and increased control over color intensity
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  • View a demonstration of artist-instructor Dan Thompson's figure-painting techniques. Be sure to check back in the coming weeks for a more detailed video demonstration of Thompson's work. Step 1: Thompson set up the model in a sitting position
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  • The artistic journey of Bonnie Ramsbottom is one of both tragedy and triumph: she came to art late in life literally by accident when she began painting as a means to recover from the removal of a brain tumor, the surgery of which she was not expected
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  • This oil painter finds that his ongoing series of paintings depicting books allows him to venture into a number of themes—including self-portraiture. View an online exclusive gallery of Rubenstein's work. by William Chapman Sharpe The Great
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  • Oil Painting Pigments and mediums Oil paint is pigment suspended in oil, usually linseed oil. Painters thin oil paints by adding either more oil or a solvent, such as turpentine--or a mixture of both. In addition to linseed, artists use walnut, poppy
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  • In the June 2007 issue of American Artist, we explored how Ismael Checo uses rich color to create an exotic and intense experience of the world. Here, we present an online exclusive still-life demo as another example of his oil technique. Checo’s
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  • Take a closer look at Warren Chang's technique in this demonstration from the April 2007 issue of American Artist . The Thumbnail Sketch Using reference photos taken in the field, Chang did a 4"-x-6" pen-and-ink thumbnail sketch on paper
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  • View more of Ephraim Rubenstein's paintings depicting books in this online exclusive gallery. Library I 1997, oil, 32 x 21. Private collection. Books: Pile IV oil, 8 x 9. Prviate collection. Books: Pile IV oil, 8 x 22. Collection the artist. Books
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  • by William Chapman Sharpe In the July/August issue of American Artist, William Chapman Sharpe investigated how oil painter Ephraim Rubenstein used books as subject matter in his paintings to explore their meaning in society and to serve as an indirect
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  • In the December 2006 issue of American Artist , veteran painter James Tormey conveyed powerful meaning in his still lifes by continually shifting the backgrounds and settings in which they appear. Here, we present 10 more of his meticulous oil paintings
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  • This veteran painter conveys powerful meaning in his still lifes by continually shifting the backgrounds and settings in which they appear. by John A. Parks Icon 1994, oil, 18 x 12. All artwork this article private collection unless otherwise indicated
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  • Take a closer look at Philip R. Jackson's unconventional still lifes in this online exclusive gallery. Tension Series: Sweet Victory 2006, oil on panel, 7 x 5. All artwork this gallery private collection unless otherwise indicated. Tension Series
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  • Mississippi artist Philip R. Jackson’s unconventional still lifes ask viewers to see the beauty in everyday objects. by James A. Metcalfe The Mighty Goldfish Cracker 2004, oil, 8 x 10. Private collection. By casting ordinary items—a bunch
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  • In the July/August 2007 issue of American Artist, we discussed how Massachusetts oil painter Nancy Colella maintains a sense of spontaneity in her landscape paintings. Here, we present more of her landscapes as well as her still-life paintings. Chat about
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  • In this online exclusive gallery, we offer more mesmerizing landscapes by featured artist Joseph McGurl. Night Fog 2007, oil, 24 x 36. Courtesy Tree's Place Gallery, Orleans, Massachusetts. Sunset, Thanksgiving 2007, oil, 18 x 36. Courtesy Tree's
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  • This Hudson River Valley artist uses a limited palette to create landscapes drenched in an evocative and transporting light. by John A. Parks Hook Mountain, Nyack, New York 2006, oil on linen, 36 x 60. Private collection. All images this article courtesy
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  • We present more examples of Ismael Checo's oil technique and discuss his materials to expand upon his June 2007 American Artist feature article. Old Shoes 1987, oil, 16 x 20. All artwork this gallery collection the artist unless otherwise indicated
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  • In the June 2007 issue of American Artist, we discussed how the influences of a prismatic palette, a gifted teacher, and a solid foundation in drawing combined to infuse Susan Hope Fogel's oil paintings with convincing realism and sublime atmospherics
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  • We explored John Beerman's illuminating Hudson River Valley landscapes in the June 2007 issue of American Artist. Here, we offer more of his light-drenched landscapes, including an oil sketch for one of the pieces mentioned in the feature article
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  • We explored Rose Frantzen's insightful approach to teaching figure painting in the spring 2007 issue of Workshop magazine. Here, we offer tips from the article. Helpful Hint: Evaluate Your Process Subjectively Frantzen uses several methods to judge
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  • We present more of Colin J. Callahan's oil paintings that capture light with a sense of energy in the May 2007 issue of American Artist . Ireland 2004, oil on panel, 8 x 10. Collection the artist. Hills of Western Virginia 2005, oil on board, 11 x
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  • After a Trip to Italy, Fred Wessel learned more about egg tempera painting and adding gold leaf to his panels. He now teaches those procedures for emulating the dazzling beauty and inner glow of 14th- and 15th-century pictures. by M. Stephen Doherty The
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  • In the January 2007 issue of American Artist , we discussed how Timothy Barr explored his oil landscapes by combining multiple digital images, using Photoshop to design the perfect scene. Here, we present an excerpt from the article that further explains
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  • A combination of variable brushstrokes, a warm and dark underpainting, and careful observation of environmental conditions help New Hampshire painter Colin J. Callahan capture light with a sense of energy. by Bob Bahr Banana 2001, oil on paper, 31 x 21
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  • We present more of Pauline Roche's figure paintings that capture contemporary viewers mesmerized by the genius of Old Master work in the May 2007 issue of American Artist . View an audio slideshow demonstration of Roche's still-life work Spring
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  • In the winter 2007 issue of Watercolor , we discussed how Georgia artist Brenda Turner switched from painting with transparent watercolor to using gouache on dark-colored paper. In contrast, we offer a variety of her oil paintings in this online exclusive
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  • Forbes and American Artis t again invited a group of artists to spend a week together interpreting a vast Colorado ranch in their choice of medium, subject, and style. by M. Stephen Doherty View of Cat Mountain by Ephraim Rubenstein, 2006, oil, 9 x 17½
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  • View more of Marla J. Brenner's plein air paintings in this online exclusive gallery, which expands upon the print feature in the April 2007 issue of American Artist . Headwaters of the South Fork 2006,oil on linen, 12 x 9. All artwork this gallery
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  • In this online exclusive gallery, we present more paintings from the Forbes Trinchera Ranch residency as a supplement to the feature in the March 2007 issue of American Artist . Creek by Ryan S. Brown, 2006, oil, 22 x 28. All artwork this gallery collection
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  • View more examples of how New Jersey painter David Ahlsted renders the world with geometric lucidity and brilliant color in this online exclusive gallery. Tankers and Refineries on the Delaware 1994, oil, 36 x 84. Collection New Jersey State House, Trenton
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  • This California-based artist uses a 19th-century palette to create a nostalgic atmosphere in his paintings. by John A. Parks Entrance 2003, oil, 40 x 30. Courtesy Morseburg Galleries, West Hollywood, California. Warren Chang paints scenes from two very
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  • Ned Mueller discussed how to properly mix the right colors with which to convey a scene. by Bob Bahr “Many students want to learn as much as they can in an expedient manner, but it does take some years to achieve a fairly competent level,”
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  • In the winter 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, we explored how James M. Sulkowski showed students how to paint people posing in lush garden scenes during his Pennsylvania workshop. In this online exclusive gallery, we offer more of his oil paintings.
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  • The James A. Michener Museum, in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, will present this retrospective of work by Pennsylvania Impressionist Harry Leith-Ross through March 4. Poetry in Design: The Art of Harry Leith-Ross Through March 4 James A. Michener Art Museum
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  • In the winter 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, we offered an inside look into Montana painter Ned Mueller's plein air workshops. Here, we showcase his figurative and landscape paintings as well as a few drawings. Norwegian Summer 2006, oil, 11 x 14
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  • In the winter 2006 issue of Workshop , John A. Parks tackled what is arguably the most difficult subject matter: how to organize color to paint the nature of light. We present an excerpt from the article with Park's advice about the basic principles
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  • While on location at the Forbes Trinchera Ranch, in Colorado, Ruth L. Beeve used watercolor and water-soluble oil to capture a variety of subjects. Back in her California studio, she uses those studies as the basis for more ambitious graphite drawings
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  • It's understood that a career in the visual arts can be personally fulfilling and professionally risky. That's why most people work secure 9-to-5 jobs and enjoy drawing and painting during evenings and weekends. But those limited hours just aren't
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  • In this excerpt from the fall 2006 issue of Drawing , David Mayernik discusses how copying the work of Old Masters trains his taste so he can draw and paint original work with the classical beauty he reveres. by Bob Bahr For David Mayernik , who has gone
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  • Josh Elliott, one of the artists featured in the February 2007 issue of American Artist , has painted snow in Montana quite a bit, but excitement still creeps into his voice when he discusses snow’s beauty and challenge. Here he offers some tips
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  • In the winter 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, Ned Mueller taught students how to use color effectively in their paintings. We offer Muller's comments on student work that was completed during the workshop. by Bob Bahr Before After Mueller asked for
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  • In the February 2007 issue of American Artist , New York artist Judith Pond Kudlow followed a disciplined approach to representing objects and people exactly as they appear. We offer more of her oil paintings in this online exclusive gallery. Il Verde
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  • In the February 2007 issue of American Artist , we explored how Rick Hansen painted landscapes and still lifes that reflected the way things appear at one moment in time. Here, we offer more of his paintings in this online exclusive gallery. Backwater
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  • In the February 2007 issue of American Artist , we explored how oil painter Josh Elliott painted tones and designs in his landscapepaintings. Here, we offer more of Elliott's picturesque scenes, including several of what he calls his "tone poems
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  • Oil painter Josh Elliott strives to paint tones and designs, not just picturesque scenes. by Bob Bahr Evening Shadows, Swan Valley 2006, oil, 12 x 16. All artwork this article private collection unless otherwise indicated. Josh Elliott is 33 years old
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  • In the February 2007 issue of American Artist , James Woodside discussed how his paintings reflected his experiences in some of the planet's remotest locations. Here, we present more of his plein air paintings in this online exclusive gallery. Breaker
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  • Maintaining a distinctive value structure is at the core of Joann Ballinger's pastel instruction--and her own paintings. by Lynne Moss Perricelli In both her teaching and her own pastel paintings, Joann Ballinger emphasizes the importance of a distinctive
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  • In the January 2007 issue of American Artist , Timothy Barr used Photoshop and multiple digital images to paint the perfect oil landscapes. Here, we offer an online exclusive painting that exemplifies Barr's work. Ausable River at Mt. Porter 2006
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  • To achieve accuracy and harmony in his alla prima figure paintings, Californian Sean Cheetham stresses drawing and a system of mixing colors based from “mud” mixtures, as he calls them, that govern shadows, midtones, and highlights. He recently
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  • A glass mosaic mural by Jack Beal was recently mounted on the wall of a New York City subway station across from his related mural that was unveiled just after September 11th. This new image presents an earlier episode in the myth of Persephone, Queen
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  • In the January 2007 issue of American Artist , we explored how Katherine Ann Hartley took her still lifes and her career to a new level of professionalism she never could have imagined by committing to a period of intense instruction and painting the
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  • New York painter Travis Schlaht looks for—and finds—compelling beauty in many corners of life. Then, using a restrained but powerful palette, he mirrors it on canvas. by James A. Metcalfe Bar II 2005, oil on linen, 26 x 36. All artwork this
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  • In the fall 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, Timothy R. Thies taught students how to capture the temperatures of light and shadow in their landscape paintings. Here, we offer an excerpt from the article regarding color charts. by Edith Zimmerman A few
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  • In the fall 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, landscape painter Timothy R. Thies taught students how to capture the elusive and nuanced temperatures of light and shadow on the picturesque beaches of the Jersey shore. Here, we present an excerpt from the
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  • In the fall 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, we examined how Sean Cheetham demonstrated that drawing and a system of mixing colors based from "mud" mixtures governed shadows, midtones, and highlights. Here, we present 10 of his figure paintings
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  • Randall C. Sexton teaches participants how to create oil paintings in response to subjects that they were anxious to paint. Here is his 11-step checklist for getting it right! by M. Stephen Doherty Is the focus of my painting clear? If not, how can it
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  • In the fall 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, California artist Sean Cheetham explained how to achieve accuracy and harmony in his alla prima figure paintings. Here, the artist discusses common weaknesses in figure paintings in an excerpt from the article
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  • In the fall 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, Thomas Van Stein taught students how to capture the elusive light of night. In this excerpt from the article, Van Stein offers a number of helpful tips for artists to keep in mind when painting at night. by
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  • In the fall 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, Randall C. Sexton taught participants how to create oil paintings in response to subjects that they were anxious to paint. We present an excerpt from the article. by M. Stephen Doherty Keep your palette organized
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  • Joseph Gyurcsak, the resident artist for Utrecht Art Supplies, is an art materials expert who assists artists, companies, and industry manufacturers in understanding different aspects of art materials and techniques. He also travels extensively, conducting
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  • In the fall 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, Lynn Gertenbach taught her students that plein air painting is a partnership between the artist and nature. We offer an exerpt from the article with Gertenbach's tips for painting water. by Molly Siple
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  • John Howard Sanden is one of the country’s leading portraitists working today. His clientele includes leading political, business, and religious figures, and he has toured the nation teaching his portrait-painting technique to thousands of artists
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  • With sold-out solo shows, numerous awards, and prominent collectors to his credit, Malcolm T. Liepke is considered one of the finest figure painters working today. by Lynne Moss Perricelli Head Study Brunette 2002, oil, 12 x 8. All artwork this article
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  • In the fall 2006 issue of Workshop magazine, California nocturne painter Thomas Van Stein taught seven students his process for capturing the light of night on canvas. Of the many challenges students faced, the most difficult ones seemed to involve value
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  • In the November 2006 issue of American Artist , we explored how Texas artist Chris McHenry balanced constrasting values, color temperatures, and edges to establish depth, atmosphere, focus, and emotion in his oil landscapes. We present an excerpt from
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  • This exhibition of large-scale landscape paintings by Paul Caranicas will be on display at Bernarducci Meisel Gallery, in New York City, through October 28. Paul Caranicas: Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow Through October 28 Bernarducci Meisel Gallery
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  • In the November 2006 issue of American Artist , we showcased James Gurney's impressive landscape paintings. We present an excerpt from the article that discusses the books that have influenced Gurney as an artist. by John A. Parks In developing his
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  • In the November 2006 issue of American Artist , we explored how oil painter Sarah Lamb's passion for cooking brought a new sensibility to the art of still life. We present an excerpt from the article. by John A. Parks Peaches 2005, oil on linen, 17
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  • In the summer 2006 issue of Drawing , New York artist Lisa Dinhofer drew convincing objects in imaginary spaces, finding meaning in both the items and their presentation. In contrast, we offer nine of her playful oil paintings in this online exclusive
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  • Like many artists accustomed to working with opaque paints, Jamie Wyeth prefers to use combinations of water-soluble materials rather than just transparent watercolor. He finds that layers of gouache, ink, graphite, acrylic, and watercolor allow him to
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  • Milt Kobayashi grants students permission to take complete control of their paintings and not feel obligated to paint exactly what they see. During a recent workshop, he encouraged participants to change a model’s pose, coloration, and costumes
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  • This New York artist draws convincing objects in imaginary spaces, finding meaning in both the items and their presentation. by Lynne Moss Perricelli Into the Light: Yellow 2004, colored pencil and collage, 19 x 22. Collection the artist. New York artist
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  • Tonal drawing--the juxtaposition of relative values, the notion of seeing masses rather than outlines--more closely replicates the way humans see than do lines. This emotional way of depicting the world has been explored since Leonardo; modern artists
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  • This New York state plein air artist creates impressive landscape paintings informed by his work as an illustrator and inspired by the work of the Hudson River School. by John A. Parks Creek Above Kaaterskill Falls 2004, oil, 20 x 16. All artwork this
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  • In the October 2006 issue of American Artist , California artist Ken Auster explained how he pursues an aggressive, take-no-prisoners approach to plein air painting. Here, we offer further insight into his technique. by John A. Parks Canvas. Cotton duck
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  • In the September 2006 issue of American Artist , Indiana artist Tim Kennedy explained how his figurative paintings have a connection to other artists, past and present. Here, the artist describes his painting process. Dancers 2005, oil, 72 x 60. Courtesy
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  • In the October 2006 issue of American Artist , oil painter Ken Auster discussed how he paints in layers to achieve powerful illusions and rich surfaces. In this online exclusive gallery, we present five more of his works. This Buds For You Oil. This is
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  • This Pennsylvania artist combines alkyd with oil to achieve poetic paintings of his local landscape using a closely controlled technique. by John A. Parks Gene McInerney paints delicate views of his beloved Pennsylvania countryside with a fullness and
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  • In the October 2006 issue of American Artist, Joseph Gyurcsak explained how he paints interior light. In contrast, we present 12 more images, mostly of landscapes, in this online exclusive gallery. Rachel's Room Oil on canvas, 11 x 14. The Dining
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  • Room interiors provide an excellent opportunity to paint a variety of light intensities, colors, and effects; but they also present challenges in trying to capture the subtleties of forms within those dimly lit spaces. by Joseph Gyurcsak Interior scenes
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  • In the September 2006 issue of American Artist, Indiana artist Tim Kennedy explained how his figurative paintings have a connection to other artists, past and present. In this online exclusive gallery, we present nine more of his works. Rental, oil on
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