How to Paint like Monet – Part 1 of 4

how to paint like monet

Lessons on the Techniques of the Impressionists

A step-by-step Impressionist Acrylic Painting

How do you achieve a more painterly impressionistic approach with acrylics?

In this series, I will be posting a weekly video lesson that you can follow along at home. It’s free to subscribe to the blog to receive updates so you can keep up with the painting progress.

The first technique in mastering an impressionist style of painting is in the actual name itself,  ‘Impressionism‘.

We are trying to achieve an ‘impression’ of the subject, rather than a detailed copy, so squinting your eyes at the subject, to blur the details is one of the first tricks to adopt.

This tutorial is ideal to leave some of your fears at the door, have fun and loosen up a bit, ready to get started?…

Continue ReadingHow to Paint like Monet – Part 1 of 4

How to Choose a Paint Starter Set for Beginners

(Without making an Expensive Mistake)

dry paint pigment

With so many paint colours available and new ranges being released every week, which colours should you buy when you first start painting?

The overwhelming feeling that descends when trying to buy paint colours either online or in your local art store can often lead to the safe bet…

The pre-boxed starter set.

The paint companies have designed them to help you, right? The best paints for your needs when you are just beginning…or so you would think.

But are they a good choice?

Are you getting the best value for money or are they sending you down the wrong path? I’ve devised a simple technique to help you decide which starter palette is right for you.

Ready for a little paint history lesson to understand what you should be thinking about on your next trip to the art store?…

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How to Paint a Warm & Cool Still Life Painting (Using only 2 Colours) – Part 3 of 3

using acrylic glazes

A step-by-step warm & cool still life acrylic painting – Part 3

This is the final post in this limited palette painting series using acrylics, I have been posting a weekly video on my YouTube channel so that you can follow along at home. It’s free to subscribe to the channel so you can keep updated with the painting progress…

Continue ReadingHow to Paint a Warm & Cool Still Life Painting (Using only 2 Colours) – Part 3 of 3

How to Paint a Warm & Cool Still Life Painting – 1 of 3

acrylic still life warm & cool colors

With only 2 colours

You know the scenario,

You decide to paint a simple study of a lemon; the painting starts out okay until you get to the fun bit, the yellow of the lemon.

As you begin to stare at the yellow to try and judge it’s the intensity you ask yourself  – how yellow can you go?

The more you look, the more you convince yourself that this is most probably the most yellow yellow the world has ever seen, so only the strongest, brightest lemon yellow will do, straight from the tube.

You paint it on with enthusiasm, only to reflect on your handiwork and find the results are a bit disappointing, it looks too fake, dare you to say it, too lemon.

So what can you do?..

Continue ReadingHow to Paint a Warm & Cool Still Life Painting – 1 of 3

A Beginners Guide to Colour Strings (and How to Paint Quicker)

colour strings oil painting

When you first start painting, the vision is to squeeze out bright, vivid paint colours, a handful of paintbrushes, or maybe a beret?

But often, this approach is an illusion, an artist myth.

To get professional results, you need a professional approach.

If you want freedom and expression on the canvas, a bit of premixing can help you achieve more pleasing results, especially if you try to achieve a more realistic effect.

If you spend a little extra time preparing, your actual time at the easel will be more efficient, quicker and rewarding.

Let’s enter the world of colour strings…

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Beginners Acrylic Still Life Course – Part 3 & Part 4 (video)

Still life cherry final stages

Part 3 & 4 of this 4 part series for beginners to acrylic painting

The first thing I do is to add some thicker paint to the main area of the cherry. This helps to reinforce the colour and is the time you can start to use thicker paint on top of the thinner underpainting we’ve already established.

I then glaze over parts of the cherry with the Alizarin Crimson & Burnt Umber mix. As both of these paints have a transparent nature – they are perfect for adjusting hues using thin layers of acrylics.

I then begin painting in the reflective light. This is the light that has bounced off the white of the table and is adding a subtle glow to the bottom edge of the cherry…

Continue ReadingBeginners Acrylic Still Life Course – Part 3 & Part 4 (video)

How to Use Acrylic Gels & Mediums (video)

acrylicgelmediums

Do you feel you should be using mediums?

You’ve probably brought a couple and had a play around, but are you using the right ones?

Or is the overuse of mediums doing more harm than good?

Acrylic mediums can change the consistency of acrylic paint and allow you more flexibility and creative freedom than any other type of paint.

The trick is to use the right ones for the right situation.

What is the difference between gels & mediums?

Gels are usually used thickly, to keep shapes and add texture.

Mediums are pourable and used to thin out paints and give the Acrylics extra working time for blending…

Continue ReadingHow to Use Acrylic Gels & Mediums (video)

The 3 Steps to Becoming a Better Painter, by Painting Less

acrylic still life painting course Ever wonder where you’re supposed to find the time to paint?

If you’re trying to paint in your spare time, it can seem impossible.

You’re already struggling just to find a clear space and get your paints set out and sometimes you can’t even manage that.

You want to work on your colour mixing, try a new paint colour, and definitely do some more sketchbook work, but you also have a job, family, friends — responsibilities that are just more important.

And so you wonder: should you just keep going, doing the best you can?

Or is there a strategy you can use that doesn’t require so much time and achieves better results?

Continue ReadingThe 3 Steps to Becoming a Better Painter, by Painting Less

Absolute Beginner Acrylic Landscape Painting Techniques – 4/4

limited palette complementary colors

The final part of this 4 part series – Beginners Acrylic Landscape Painting

This is the final stage of the painting. I now add some of the pure Ultramarine Blue and Alizarin Crimson to achieve the richer colours needed.

The pink in the sky is just a mix of Alizarin Crimson and White. Make sure you start with the white (Titanium White) and add the crimson to it, little by little.

You will only need a small amount to create the pink…

Continue ReadingAbsolute Beginner Acrylic Landscape Painting Techniques – 4/4

Acrylic Landscape Painting Techniques – Lessons for an Absolute Beginner – Part 3 of 4 (video)

landscape painting palette acrylics

“With a limited palette, the older painters could do just as well as today… what they did was sounder.”
Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Part 3 of this 4 part series for beginners to acrylic painting

The first thing I do is block-in the bottom half of the sky with the pinky tone; I’m not worried about too much detail, just getting a general tone blocked in.

This helps you judge relative tones and assess the next layer of colours that need to be added.

The ‘block in’ is still using the same premixed colours that we used for the sky and the clouds.
By using a limited palette, it makes it easier to create a visual balance and harmony.

Continue ReadingAcrylic Landscape Painting Techniques – Lessons for an Absolute Beginner – Part 3 of 4 (video)

Acrylic landscape painting techniques – Lessons for an absolute beginner – Part 1 of 4 (video)

acrylic landscape painting

“Painting is very easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do”
Edgar Degas

A step-by-step approach to acrylic painting

In this series, I will be posting a weekly video on my YouTube channel to follow along at home. It’s free to subscribe to the channel so you can keep updated with the painting progress.

Continue ReadingAcrylic landscape painting techniques – Lessons for an absolute beginner – Part 1 of 4 (video)