Spent hours, days, even weeks slaving away on a painting, but when we finally apply a varnish…it all goes horribly wrong.
The anxiousness builds.
You’re now sure there are mismatched sheens on the surface, and it was perfect before you started varnishing!
Or maybe you thought it was a good idea to wrap your newly varnished painting with bubble wrap just before the deadline of an exhibition, only to find out at the private view the bubble wrap had left hundreds of tiny circle imprints on the surface of the painting….mmm..surely no one would ever do that!
The anxiety and disappointment that comes with varnishing can sometimes seem too much.
With all the confusion, conflicting advice and frustration in creating the perfect varnish finish, you can’t help wondering, what’s the point of varnishing at all?…
Morning class! The Still Life Masterclass in Acrylics course is now available,whoo hoo!
Have you ever asked yourself “How do I make my paintings look more professional?‘
At some point in every artist’s development, you get to a stage where your paintings are looking pretty good, you can see your improvement from where you first began, but some tricky subjects still elude you.
You’ve got a basic understanding of colour mixing, paint application and your drawing’s sound, but you want to take your work to the next level.
I’ve created this Classical Still Life Masterclass with acrylics to help aspiring artists bring their paintings to a more professional finish.
We deal with the more complex subject of reflective surfaces such as Silver, Ceramic & Mahogany using an extended palette and multi-layered glazing techniques.
In Part 1 we looked at how to master the basic features of your digital camera, so you can emulate how your eyes see things in nature to give you fantastic reference photographs for your still life painting.
In Part 2we saw how small incremental changes in your composition and lighting can instantly create a more dramatic and pleasing image for a painting.
Creating a great still life painting often occurs before you’ve even picked up the brush.
In this part of Setting up a Still Life series, we’re going to look at using natural light, whilst also considering the incremental changes in the actual composition of the piece.
In Part 1 we looked at how to master the basic features of your digital camera so you can emulate how your eyes see things in nature, to give you fantastic reference photographs for your still life painting.
Once you understand how to get the depth of field and exposure that you are after, the next thing to consider is the lighting.
I happened to be chatting with my sister about my new Still Life Painting Course on Reflections, when she asked: “Are you going to paint a really hard subject like a glass of water?”
Interestingly, I had overlooked how the ability to paint transparent liquid and glass can seem very impressive – when in fact, with the right image – it’s very simple.
And if you’ve got the right set up, it can be really easy to achieve.
So inspired by this, we’re going to arrange a simple glass of water and next week…paint it…
In these tutorials I will be posting a series of videos on my YouTube channel that you can follow along at home. It’s free to subscribe to the website so you can keep updated with the painting progress.
Have you ever been half-way through a painting and suddenly the art studio light changes?
You carry on painting, hoping for a break in the weather, trying to remember the colour you’ve just mixed, and then the lighting changes.. again.
You think it won’t matter, it’s not that important, but the way you light your art studio can be one of the most cost effective ways of improving your painting and your colour mixing without buying another tube of paint.
One of the easiest methods of designing better lighting, is to simply change your light bulb.
But not all studio lamps are created equal.
From a £5 hardware store fluorescent tube to a £1,500 bespoke solution, the choices you make affect your ability to match colours accurately, judge skin tones effectively, and even feel a little happier by the quality of light you paint within.
With different options available you can have studio lighting the Old Masters would have been proud of…. without turning to shots of Absinthe.
Emergency chocolate biscuits needed
Trying to understand all the considerations when choosing my own studio lighting nearly led me to a lighting melt down! But bear in mind, I’m trying to design a bespoke studio where I’ll be painting 12 hours a day some days, through gloomy British weather and many a midnight painting session. So I need a space that has both natural light and the best quality artificial light.
There are so many variables and it’s such a specialist request that many Electrician’s will roll their eyes at you. With this tricky subject in mind, I have tried to created a summary of what you really need to know, and it can get a bit technical in places.
Do I really need to know this? I hear you cry!
Maybe, maybe not.
It depends on how much painting you do and your current lighting situation…