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How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

Hanging images in straight lines is relatively simple, using a laser level and low tack tape to mark the height of the fixings. But how do you arrange pictures on the wall of all the different sizes?

I like to use the brown paper method.

The brown paper method for hanging pictures

How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

Measure the wall space where you want the arrangement to hang.

Make a template the same size using brown paper or a large sheet of cardboard. Lay out your frames on the brown paper on the floor and move them around to create a balanced composition.

Look for colours, subjects, or frame sizes that align. They don’t all have to be the same spacing or style, but even having the same style frames can tie them together.

Draw around the frames; I’m using a white chalk marker from Chakola.

Match your hanging system to the area

Different frames will have other hanging systems. Two ‘D’ rings usually have a cord between them, but you can hang them from a single point for smaller pieces. It will be more liable to swing and move, depending on whether it’s a high-traffic area or out of the way. For more secure fixings, I’ll use mirror plates and paint them the same colour as the wall.

How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

Double-check the distance of the hanging from the top of the frame to the fixing. Sometimes there are slightly different positions.

Mark the central position on the brown paper or where the D ring is.

Make a hole through your paper with a sharp point. I’m using a long pencil called a Tracer which is handy for marking when hanging mirror plates.

Tape the guide to the wall

Tape the sheet of brown paper on the wall; I’m using low tack tape, so it doesn’t pull on the paintwork. Mark all of the holes with a pencil. You can move the guide around to check how the composition is looking before committing to drilling any holes.

Tools needed for hanging pictures

How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

For these fixings, I will be drilling and using wall plugs on the plasterboard.

How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

I love these Duopower from Fischer. These wall plugs can be used on solid walls or plasterboard – my go-to fixing.

When tapping the fixing flush to the wall, tap gently because if you tap too hard, it can pop out the plaster around the drywall fixings (not speaking from experience)

How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

If you’re hanging a corded picture, you could also use something like these – from 3M. Less wall damage, easy installation and are removable, just more cost per unit in comparison to wall plugs.

How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

To get super precise, you can use a laser level. You can now get affordable laser levels (green laser is easier to read than red) for under £50. They can be great for hanging pictures, aligning still lives, painting sight-size etc.

How To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

Add a screw to the fixing and then hang your paintings. Stand back and admire your work, tweaking the levels with a pocket spirit level. Grab yourself a brew!

Here are where you can find the lessons shown in the arrangement:

A – Painting Winter Light in Cornwall (step-by-step acrylic lesson)

B – How to simplify a complicated landscape scene (step-by-step acrylic lesson)

C – Beginners oil step-by-step demo (step-by-step oil lesson)

D – How to paint a terracotta pot (free acrylic video tutorial)

E – One of the lessons from the Venice Light and Landscape Course

F – How to paint looser with Acrylics (free video tutorial)

G – Featured in ‘The Immersive Power of Painting (a Painting Truth you can Learn too Late)’ article

 

Continue ReadingHow To Easily Hang Multiple Picture Frames (Using the Brown Paper Method)

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

After all the concentration and effort it takes to create a work, you’d have thought the final signature would come easy; we sign our names all the time, right?

But there can be so many choices, full name or first name? Initials or motifs? Month or Year? Paint or Pen? Filled with hesitation, we’re left wondering if our final mark on the canvas will ruin the piece.

Here’s a guide to help you decide, practice and sign your work confidently.

Blame it on the Renaissance

Craftspeople have been signing their artworks for thousands of years. In Italy, the most dramatic shift in the use of signatures for painters was during the Renaissance; previously, they had worked within a group guild system.

Guilds (Arti)
In most of Europe, crafts and professions had been governed by guilds for centuries, ever since the expansion of towns and cities in the early Middle Ages. These sworn associations controlled trade, limited outside competition, established standards of quality, and set rules for the training of apprentices. Membership was usually compulsory—only guild members could practice their trades within a city and its territory.
Italian Renasissance Resources 

Artists wanted to be known for their creations, so the signature began to be used more frequently.

It allowed Patrons and collectors to show ‘who’ painted the piece, a chance for work to be seen and admired. The signature became as important as the artwork itself, and in Italy, this change began to elevate painters from craftspeople to artists. So much so, Dürer commented on how he was perceived whilst travelling there.

“Here I am a gentleman, at home a sponger [dauber – a crude or inartistic painter].”
Albrecht Dürer 

1. Signing your work, overcoming the tipping point

When you’re first learning to paint, there can be apprehension about whether to sign your early pieces or not. If you’re not super proud of your painting, it can feel a little presumptuous to sign ‘like an artist’.

The first decision is a balance between embarrassment and pride. I feel it’s on a sliding scale.

But if you can get over the tipping point of being embarrassed by the things you should have done better than feeling proud that you created a unique piece (even for a moment, because it might be fleeting!), then you’ll feel more inclined to start signing your work.

An initial approach

You are just having an abbreviation of your initials can work well on a small-scale piece because your signature doesn’t become too prominent. And that’s often the balance of having a signature on your piece without it interfering too much with the painting.

Is the bottom right the best place to sign your painting?

It depends; you’ll see an example in this Degas painting of how he’s positioned his signature. The most common advice is bottom right; that’s where you’ll see most signatures but I usually look to see what balances well within the composition; there are no defined rules.

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

Degas Signature – notice how the signature follows the contours of the table cloth. (Detail of L’Absinthe, 1876, oil on canvas)

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

Edgar Degas, Dancers Practicing at the Barre, 1877

So if you look at this Degas painting, he’s used his signature as part of the skirting board in the centre of the piece. Rather than drawing your eye to the bottom right of the painting or losing the signature to the left, this position reinforces the movement along the diagonal line.

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

You can see a similar method in Van Gogh’s signature. Following the line of the box in the background of the painting. (Detail of Van Gogh’s Chair)

It feels like an extension of the expression within the piece. Your signature can reflect your character as well.

Watch your edges

Another thing to be aware of if you’re framing your painting is the overhang of the moulding; bear in mind when you’re positioning your signature, that the frame isn’t going to cover it.

If you’re still nervous about emblazoning the front of your painting with your name, you can start on the back.

2. Using the back of the canvas?

Sure, Picasso went through a stage of signing his works on the back, and many artists do. I did for a while because I didn’t want the written elements of a signature to engage the viewer’s language side of their brain. I wanted the painting to remain an immersive colour visual field.

If you look on auction sites like Sotheby’s, they can be a great way to see the back of paintings and how artists have labelled their pieces.

Ben Nicholson Signature

I like the way Ben Nicholson signed the back, by painting a swatch of colour on the canvas first before the signature went on top. (You can go in close here)

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

Nicholson’s signature, this time on a backing board. Notice the same method of painting a swatch of painting and then signing on top. Even though the actual signatures vary, the approach is the same.

3. Sign with an acrylic marker pen rather than a brush

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

When I started painting with acrylics, markers weren’t available, so I used a rigger brush or a permanent pen.

Now acrylic markers have come around, and more recently, empty markers that you can customise and add your paint mixes and nibs. There are many more possibilities and flexibility to sign with a medium that’s the same as the piece. It feels more integral and part of the work. So rather than having a black permanent marker standing out on a light composition, you could choose a subtle grey or any one of the hundreds of colours available to sign with.

  • Liquitex acrylic markers – you can choose different nibs and colours that are sympathetic to your painting.
  • F &W markers – you can put in any medium you want and change the nib.
  • Brush Pens – You can use a brush pen nib for more of a flowing brush style. I like the Pental Brush Pens (the water brush pen is excellent for watercolour and ink sketches. It holds a reservoir of water that, when squeezed, flows down to the bristles of the brush.)

Signing an oil painting

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

Detail of Orchestra Musicians, Edgar Degas,1872.

Because the oil paint stays wetter for longer, you will often see artists using the back of their brush to sign a signature within the wet paint. You can carve a tip into the end of your brush to give it a tighter line. This can look very effective and give a nice harmonious feel to the work; it feels quite organic to be able to scratch your signature into the thick paint; it’s quite an enjoyable thing to do!

Can you get oil painting markers for signing oil paintings?

If you could, I would love to use them, and if anyone has come across a manufacturer, please let me know in the comments.

You can get oil-based markers, but not just Oil Paint. I’m not sure how archival some of the Oil markers would be because they are often designed to be removable as well. So I’d be tempted to use thinned oil paint in one of the empty multi-media markers rather than an oil-based marker.

4. Sign it, Photograph it, then Varnish it

If you are signing your painting with a permanent pen you haven’t used before, test signing on a scrap piece of paper or canvas, then apply a varnish/isolation coat on top of your test piece. Sometimes, if you’re vigorous with the brush application of a topcoat, it can smear the pen. I’ve had this before, even if they’re called ‘permanent’ markers. What you can do to get around this is to use spray varnish; gently spraying over is often less disruptive to the signature.

  • Step 1: Sign it – If you sign your painting before photographing it, you’ll have a record of your painting and of your signature for authenticity.
  • Step 2: Photograph it – It’s best to photograph your work before you apply a varnish layer so you don’t get reflections from the surface onto the camera lens.
  • Step 3: Varnish it – Once you apply a varnish, it will seal and protect your signature and your painting.

A note on an Isolation Coat: If applying an isolation coat before the varnish layer, I sign my pieces under the isolation coat.

5. Use a rigger brush for better flow

The rigger shape is similar to a round but with much longer hair, also referred to as a “script” of “liner” brush.
Rosemary & Co

If you prefer to use a brush, using a fluid acrylic can be great for a signature because you have a nice mix of flow and opacity of the paint. Also, try using a Mahl stick to keep your hand steady; practice, practice, practice on everything apart from your painting before committing.

6. Don’t worry about the perfect signature – take the Picasso approach

collection of Picasso signatures

Collection of Picasso signatures

Your signature doesn’t have to stay the same. It’s better to choose a style and start; then you can tweak as your style and taste grow and change.

It’s interesting to look at some famous artists’ signatures throughout their careers. Picasso’s signatures started with a ‘P.R.’ developing into the Picasso flair. The angled line under his name remains consistent throughout.

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

If you look at Rembrandt’s pieces, he started off just using initials. This elaborated into using Rembrant, with a missing ‘d’, which developed into a full Rembrandt that is most recognisable to us.

7. Do I need to add a date?

I always think it’s good practice to have a date on your work. Both for your own copyright and to look back and see your progress. This can be abbreviated ’22 or the full year, 2022. I tend to abbreviate on the front but add the full date on the back.

You can also add a label on the back that has the title of the piece, the mediums used, and the varnish used. And this is all very handy. If it goes to a conservator in the future and needs the varnish replacing, they know what they’re dealing with and what mediums you’ve used.
It can also be useful to add to your email, website, or social media on a back label so future collectors can contact you.

The $50 million motif

7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

Albert Dürer AD Monogram

You can also develop motifs or symbols. When creating portraits inspired by film stills, I designed a signature within a circle in the top right of the painting. The symbol was based on cigarette burn or ‘cue mark’ that you find in celluloid films so the projectionist would be aware that a reel of the movie is ending soon. It was a subtle nod to the film industry.

Albert Dürer had the motif of A.D. that he used in all of his pieces. He even went to court twice to protect this authenticity.

A Dürer drawing, purchased for $30 dollars is now thought to be an original piece by the artist, with his trademark A.D. being a key part of the province of the piece.

Smithsonian Magazine: Sketch Bought at Estate Sale for $30 May Be Dürer Drawing Worth $50 Million

What’s a good way to practice your signature?

Grab a piece of tracing paper and sign your signature in lots of different ways; holding them over one of your paintings is a good way to see how different sizes of signatures will look.

If you have an iPad, you can use the Apple Pencil to sign your signature in a programme like Procreate, which is great because you can use paint brushes within the app to mimic how paint and pens would look.

Having ownership of your paintings can feel empowering. It signifies the painting is finished and gives the piece a sense of prominence, value and importance.

So grab your latest piece, and let’s get signing!

Further reading:

Where do you find famous artists’ signatures?

John Castagno has curated over 17 books of artist signatures – 17! He also has an online resource where you can search and look for artist signatures and monograms.

 

Continue Reading7 Ways to Sign Your Paintings (Without Ruining All Your Hard Work)

How to Mix Shades of Green with Acrylics – Simple Leaf Step-by-Step

How to Mix Shades of Green with Acrylics - Simple Leaf Step-by-Step

Following on from last week’s lesson, where we looked at the problem of the midday sun, I’ve put together a simple study in shaded light.

In this acrylic step-by-step, we look at creating a green ‘colour string’ and working on separating the darks and lights in a leaf-dense subject.

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How Controlling Your Light is Key to Painting Realistic Florals Outside

How Controlling Your Light is Key to Painting Realistic Florals Outside

Monet in his garden at Giverny, 1921 – Musée d’Orsay, Paris Photo ©

Monet had a real dedication to gardening as well as an obsession with colour. He designed both his flower garden and water garden at Giverny, France, which became his greatest source of inspiration. He painted his water lilies over 250 times, capturing light and texture with effortless ease.

“I perhaps owe it to flowers that I have become a painter.”
Claude Monet

Flowers are always a fascinating subject to paint. I got chatting to a beginner painter at a recent visit to Arley Hall, who was expressing their frustration because they couldn’t seem to recreate a realistic study of the rose garden in paint.

They had gone out in the midday sun because they wanted to capture the garden in its best light.

The colours of the rose heads in front of them seemed impossible to match with their paints. Their pigments didn’t seem to have a high enough chroma, and they couldn’t see the detail in the petals because the sun had blown the highlights out.

They had come back the following day at more or less the same time to take more photos to capture it because they were disappointed with their previous efforts with paint. This is when we struck up a conversation about how the photos on their phone just didn’t capture the range they could see with their eyes.

So we had a beautiful subject, brilliant sunshine, but not necessarily perfect conditions for painting a realistic rendering.

Why?

Continue ReadingHow Controlling Your Light is Key to Painting Realistic Florals Outside

The Art Studio Renovation Diary – Phase 1 Completed!

The Art Studio Renovation Diary – Phase 1 Completed!

After years of painting trips, holidays and a rollercoaster of a property search, we’ve finally found our dream studio in Cornwall.

Leaking roofs, copious amounts of whitewashing, numerous skips, and an epic space once the working studio of Royal Academy artist Sandra Blow, in glorious St Ives.

I’ve been taking lots of photographs and Vanessa has been writing a monthly journal following our highs and lows of creating a studio and new life by the sea (with 12 short videos of the progress). The Renovation Diaries, 12-months in 12 minutes

Phase 1, The Garden Room, (formerly the Annexe) completed

Continue ReadingThe Art Studio Renovation Diary – Phase 1 Completed!

Traditional Gardens & Modern Art

This week I visited Arley Hall & Gardens in Cheshire.

There’s a special exhibition of over twenty works by artists including Antony Gormley, Tracey Emin, Isamu Noguchi, Cerith Wyn Evans and Danh Vo. Sculptures dotted around the historical grounds, in ponds and deep in the woodland groves, courtesy of the White Cube Gallery and it was fabulous to see the contemporary works within this setting.

garden sculptures

modern sculpture

Play sculpture by Isamu Noguchi. I love how striking the red feels next to its complementary colour green here, it has almost a reverberation to it.

“I like to think of playgrounds as a primer of shapes and functions; simple, mysterious, and evocative: thus educational. The child’s world
would be a beginning world, fresh and clear.”

Isamu Noguchi, A Sculptor’s World

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5 Little Lessons from Painting a Large Painting in a New Space

5 Little Lessons from Painting a Large Painting in a New Space

Painting large scale is not just a matter of having the right size canvas and paint. It’s also about adopting slightly different working methods and brushstrokes than when you work with a small canvas, and it’s one of the best ways to stretch your skills as a painter, even if you predominately paint small.

After months of renovation, I have recently regained the use of our new studio space. For the last 6 months, it had become the perfect place for storing multiple power tools and timber that needed acclimatising. It has been uplifting emptying the space of leftover building materials back to an empty room.

So last week with great relish, energy and anticipation, I propped up a large-scale 2m square canvas against a newly cleared wall and got to it.

I had a loose plan of the final image.

I’d sketched a pen and ink thumbnail of the view and had a palette of colours in mind but if I’m 100% honest I was super excited by the freedom of painting in a big space and seeing how the new studio felt.

Here are five things I learned.

#1. A little colour change is a big colour change.

Mixing the right colours for a large scale is not easy.

On smaller-scale pieces, your reference image is often close in size to the final piece, so you can translate the effect of the colour quite easily, but when you scale up an image everything becomes exaggerated.

As soon as you scale up the surface area that a colour covers, it has more of an intensity to it. The same colour ratio I would normally go for in a smaller piece looked more colourful once it was painted onto such a vast area.

5 Little Lessons from Painting a Large Painting in a New Space

#2. Scale up your brush to match your canvas size.

Just as you have to be aware of scaling down your colour choices and scaling up the volume of paint, you have to use larger tools to apply the paint too.

I rapidly went from a 1/2-inch brush to a 3-inch brush to a mini-roller!

5 Little Lessons from Painting a Large Painting in a New Space

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Capturing Spring Sunshine by Painting Colourful Shadows (Acrylic Painting Tutorial)

Capturing Spring Sunshine by Painting Colourful Shadows (Acrylic Painting Tutorial)

Morning class, last week I was struck by this image of these beautiful colourful cast shadows.

Spring sunshine was pouring through the wrought iron railings on the balcony and casting all these amazing shapes of the plant leaves onto the studio wall. I really, really liked the way they framed the rubber plant and I also liked how flat the shadows were in contrast to all the textures that I saw on the front of the aged terracotta pot.

You can be put off by painting shadows or tackling greens because they seem too complicated.

So for this lesson, I want you to think about the drawing first—a tonal underpainting and then a minimal painting on top. Spend more time on the shadows and the lights to create a painting that captures the feeling of sunlight.

I’ve put together a detailed photo step-by-step (with a few video time-lapses as well), so you can approach painting shadows and greens with ease.

Continue ReadingCapturing Spring Sunshine by Painting Colourful Shadows (Acrylic Painting Tutorial)

Van Gogh Self Portraits at The Courtauld, London

Van Gogh Self Portraits at The Courtauld, London

‘People say that it is difficult to know oneself but it’s not easy to paint oneself either’
Excerpt from a letter from Vincent van Gogh to his brother Theo, September 1889

My first introduction to the Dutch painter Vincent Willem van Gogh was at school. A tortured artist who cut off his ear and painted thick, brightly coloured swirly paintings.

He felt dramatic, passionate and extreme.

12-year-olds tend to want to produce art that looks more realistic, so I think at the time, I wanted to try and paint like Cezanne. Cezanne’s still life’s hit the dizzy heights of being recognisable yet achievable, with a nice painterly style.

But thinking back, I probably felt I was being sophisticated and different; copying Van Gogh as a young painter seemed too obvious.

It wasn’t until an art trip at 16 to the National Gallery, London that I rediscovered the Sunflowers…

Continue ReadingVan Gogh Self Portraits at The Courtauld, London

New! Acrylic Impressionistic Seascape Course

New! Acrylic Impressionistic Seascape Course

Morning class, I’m Will Kemp and welcome to A Cornish Seascape, the second painting in my series of short courses.

‘The Morning Paintings’ are designed to be easy-to-follow single project courses; you can complete them in just a few 1hr painting sessions.

Each one follows the same approach.

  • A single painting from start to finish.
  • A limited colour palette.
  • A handful of brushes.
  • A small canvas.
  • A simple subject.
  • Taught over 3 x 45-minute lessons.

You can see student results from the first painting in the Morning Paintings series here.

Simple Impressionistic Brushstrokes

I’ve started this series because sometimes you can find yourself overthinking the end result of a painting, and the pressure of having to make it a masterpiece can keep you from even starting!

I find setting aside 1hr every morning really helps overcome this feeling of being overwhelmed; in this second short course, we’re tackling a glittering seascape from the south coast of Cornwall.

This course has been designed with small, bite-sized lessons; you’ll be building your knowledge and your painting without the task becoming too much. I’m keeping it very simple with just a handful of materials, but we’ll still get a good range of mixes even using a minimal palette.

In this seascape, the two sailboats give us a great focal point; they also provide a real sense of scale. Having a contrasting focal point against a smooth blend of a sky and cooler softer tones of the far hills sends your eye into the distance. Framed by contrasting values of dark rocks, set against the gradation of the depth of tones within the sea creates realism.

We’ll cover the preparation of your surface & drawing out, mixing colour strings and blocking-in. Starting with just two colours, showing how important it can be to get a grounding in your painting, establishing a tonal range so you can start to judge everything from that initial set-up.

New! Acrylic Impressionistic Seascape Course

Release the Pressure of Perfection

We build thin layers of watery washes followed by thick impasto marks using simple impressionistic brushstrokes. This course will help you to ‘loosen up’ whilst the step-by-step instruction will keep you on track.

It’s been kept to be really, really simple, so when we come to add that punch a vibrancy of colour, later on, all of a sudden your painting comes together in an instant, from all the work we’ve done up to that stage.

And in the final lesson, we will introduce the perfect pigment for turquoise seas; we then introduce dappled light. By having these dashes of reflections, it evokes that memory of a glimmering sea.

So find a comfy seat, a strong cup of coffee or a pot of teaand see what you can achieve in a 1-hour painting slot.

Gain confidence, and embrace the process of practice!

You could make a big step forward in the painting every day, and after three days, or even over a weekend, I think you will be amazed at how far your painting has progressed!

What’s in the Course?

  • 1 x Impressionistic Seascape from start to finish, based in the studio working from a reference image.
  • 3 x downloadable video lessons, split into separate chapters that follow on sequentially. Step-by-step instructional videos so that you can follow along at your own pace.
  • Each stage is a detailed yet easy-to-follow process.
  • Lifetime access, downloadable on separate devices.
  • One-time payment.
  • Downloadable jpeg reference images and reference line drawings.
  • Printable Class materials list.
  • 2 hrs of detailed video instruction.

(You will need a printer or print shop for the reference image)

Learn more about the course here: A Cornish Seascape Acrylic Course

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How to Quickly make Sense of a Complicated Landscape Scene

How to Quickly make Sense of a Complicated Landscape Scene

I had an email from a student recently with a great question,

I’m wondering how to start painting this picture. There are so many colours, trees and bushes so I think it gets so messy. Do I start with the sky in the background and work my way forward and finally paint the trees? – Ulrikke

The photo that accompanied the email was a scene crowded with trees. Lots of layers all on top of each other, overlapping leaves and foliage coming towards the viewer with almost no visual sky.

Continue ReadingHow to Quickly make Sense of a Complicated Landscape Scene

The Art Studio Renovation Diary – Update

The Art Studio Renovation Diary - Update

After years of painting trips, holidays and a rollercoaster of a property search, we’ve finally found our dream studio in Cornwall.

Leaking roofs, copious amounts of whitewashing, numerous skips, and an epic space once the working studio of Royal Academy artist Sandra Blow, in glorious St Ives. 

I’ve been taking lots of photographs and Vanessa has been writing a monthly journal following our progress on the build. We’ll be sharing more of the Art Studio Renovation Diaries in the New Year.

Here’s a brief update of the journey so far, bringing this eclectic empty property back to life. The highs and lows of creating a studio, home and new life fuelled by large amounts of ice cream. 

First things first, the Annexe

It seemed like the most logical place to start. Small, manageable, single-storey, and far enough away from living conditions to be contained.

The Annexe is where it would all begin.

Continue ReadingThe Art Studio Renovation Diary – Update

A Thanksgiving Thanks!

A Thanksgiving Thanks!

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I’d like to thank all the students and well-wishers that have supported the Art School blog over the last year. It’s so inspiring when students share their creativity, progress and fantastic painting successes.

Have a great weekend, Vanessa & I are wrapping up warm, soaking up nature and walking the coastal path …. which so happens to pass an ice-cream parlour. I’m hoping to test if my Dad’s theory that ‘You get bigger portions in the Winter’ is true!

Will

p.s. I’ve been working on a new ‘Morning Paintings’ Course which will be launching in the next couple of months. I’ll keep you posted.

Continue ReadingA Thanksgiving Thanks!

Fishing Boat at St Michael’s Mount – Acrylic Step-by-Step Tutorial for Beginners

acrylic boat tutorial

Will Kemp, Fishing Boat at St Michael’s Mount, 10 x 8 inches, Acrylic on Board

Morning class,

After posting photos from my recent trip to St Michael’s Mount, the most popular request was to create a painting tutorial of the little blue boat. So here it is, a new free step-by-step acrylic lesson!

Grab a brew, maybe a biscuit or two (now the weather’s turning a bit more autumnal I’ve got a piece of particularly good ginger cake from the local farmers market) and let’s get painting, I really hope you enjoy it.

Continue ReadingFishing Boat at St Michael’s Mount – Acrylic Step-by-Step Tutorial for Beginners

Exploring St Michael’s Mount, the Castle & Recovered Portraits

Exploring St Michael's Mount, the Castle & Recovered Portraits

After a week of steady mizzle, the skies cleared, and it felt like the perfect autumnal day to head off and explore the nearby island of historical St Michael’s Mount in Marazion.

Nestled on top of a rocky hill, surrounded by blue water, it truly is an incredible sight, even as we approached by road: a medieval church, ancient castle and a family home rise impressively out of the sea.

Exploring St Michael's Mount, the Castle & Recovered Portraits

As we negotiated our way through the old town of Marazion and along the slipway, we went past this super cute cottage with the hand-painted door weathered by the sea air.

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