In order to grow as an artist you need to learn. Sometimes you learn from classes and books and sometimes you learn by trying different things. Doing the same thing over and over, if it is not working, is not the answer.
Lately I’ve been working in oils and playing with perspective. But while I was online getting some supplies, I came across Golden Fluid Acrylics. I went on You Tube and found many artists doing some fantastic work with them. One whom I find very soothing to watch is a gal MelyD.artist. She comes out with some great work as well and it’s fun to watch it develop.
So of course I had to try it as well. I found where I wanted to take my experiments were different than the way she worked and that is how art works. Creative efforts often spark more creative efforts.
So here is some plain acrylic paint mixed with Matte Media. I call this one You Make my Heart Melt.
Of course I had to go on and play some more. This one is mostly fluid acrylics with a little painting on top. I call this one Meeting the Genius.
Conjuring the Storm
Surfing the Mindscape
I find I like to use these acrylics to make a complex background and then either enhance the elements with a little painting or paint over them. It’s always fun to try a different direction.
One day, while sitting around just looking I finally felt like I really “saw” for the first time. After you have a car accident and break your leg you have lots of time to look, But enough of that. I looked and saw nothing is white. Now that may not sound like much, but if you look at a shadow it may be shades of grey. A tree, shades of brown. If you put all those little shades next to one another, you have a picture.
I got it! But could I do it? I started just drawing with pencil. After a few false starts I decided that what I was doing, while not great, wasn’t all that bad. When my husband asked me for what I wanted for my birthday, I asked for oil paints. I haven’t picked up a brush in over 20 years, but am I having a ball. I decided to work through a book of oil painting exercises.
Just mixing the colors was lots of fun. In the past I just jumped in and tried to capture what I could but learning a bit was advancing what I could do as well. In the first column you have the color out of the tube, the second column is the color mixed with white, the next is the color mixed with black, the next is the color mixed with grey. The last two colums are the color mixed with it’s opposite on the color wheel (I may have played with this a bit rather than being exact) then the opposite and white. So this entire large block was made from 7 colors. The last one I threw in there as the exercise only had 6 as I was in search of shades of Pyr fur.
Of course I posted on Facebook that I recieved my oils. Not only did I recieve my oil paint set and easel, but my husband, showing great faith in my unproven ability bought me enough canvas to fill an art gallery. Next my dog’s breeder asked if I would paint a picture of my dog as a charity donation for the Great Pyrenees rescue booth. I wasn’t sure I was up to it. But I decided to try my best. So I jumped from exercises to dog portraits.
It turned out having a furry muse around really helped. I had been taking pictures of him for years and looking at Pyrs for a long time. So it was subject matter I knew well and loved and really wanted to show him off well.
Surprisingly, people actually liked what I did and even wrote to me asking for copies and cards and the like. And an idea was born. So I’ve skipped from exercise 2 in the painting techniques book, to being a painter of Pyrs and other things my furry muse Tila brings to my attention.