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Painting Workshop 20
 

Demo Painting

"Roberton Island" 9x16" Oil on Canvas by Richard Robinson

 

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This Month's Challenge

Big Brush, Credit Card

I once heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Are you painting the same way over and over again and expecting something different, something exciting!? Let's try something different today, let's see what happens if we put all our little brushes away and only use a BIG brush and a credit card. Have fun!

Workshop Challenge

Feel free to follow me step by step in painting the same scene or use the photos below or your own resources to design a piece that is more your own. You can paint this any size or shape your like using any medium. Either way the main learning goal for this workshop is to focus on exploring the possibilities of painting with a large brush and a credit card. Happy painting!

Click image to enlarge.    
Resource Photo - click to enlarge
 
Resource Photo - click to enlarge

 

Here's a video explaining how to analyse colour and value with a colour checker:

Can't see this video? Watch it on Youtube

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You can learn more about brushwork at the Painting Academy.

Note: If you can't see the videos on this page (above) or on Youtube, I can't help with that sorry - there will be something wrong with your computer settings, but I'm no computer wiz. You would need to contact a computery person to fix that problem.

 

Gallery of the Month's Workshop Challenge Entries  






Painting Critiques

Painting

"Roberton Island" Oil on Canvas by Montalvo

Hi Montalvo, although I am charmed by the simplified solid feel of this painting, I don't know if that's what you were trying to achieve, but I don't believe it is, so I'll assess it on the basis that you were trying to achieve something similar to the demo painting. In that case it seems you have over simplified the subject because of a loss of detailed texture due to overpainting, which means painting over an area again and again until all the brushstrokes become indistinct and any fine surface detail is lost in a blur.

Saying that, you have managed to retain a good sense of light and shade which leads to solid forms and the feeling that you are certain of the position of the sun and that your subject exists solidly in space. That's largely thanks to your values, which you can see in the grayscale version below, although the light on your hill has been pushed too light - you can see it merges with the water beyond.

Painting

You might want to take another look at your horizon too as it doesn't continue believably through from the left to the right, and beware making boats look all the same! It looks like an armada of hobby cats down there. Your foreground trees could do with some more variation too. Overall it has a nice playfull rhythm to it that I find very appealing despite the shortcomings of realism I've mentioned which leads me to believe you've got a good artistic eye on you just requiring some more brush miles. Happy painting!

 

Painting

"Roberton Island" Oil on Canvas by Jess Paskel

Nice design Jess inluding a bit more of the foreground than I did and what an interesting paint texture you've achieved with the credit card and large brush! The whole surface is shimmering with life - beautiful! I love the thin little trunks you've put in which provide just enough detail to hold the foreground back from the brink of abstraction. I also like the subtle detail of the shadows under the boats although I think it's a small shame the masts weren't painted with a little more crisp exactness.

I love the play of edges you have orchestrated - very soft vs sharp. Perhaps there could have been a few more sharp edges and clearer definition in the mid ground beach and hillocks which is really the focal centre. Overall, very nicely done and I look forward to seeing if you follow through with this style and develop it further.

Painting

"Roberton Island"40 x 50cm Oil on Canvas by Suzanne Louise Andrew

Suzanne I love the rugged loose style you've achieved in this painting - very fun and a pleasure to look at. I wish I'd done a similar large S-curve with my composition too, although I feel the hillocks in the midground could have been better employed extending out the left side of the canvas because you've created four suspiciously similar rocky outcrops there, all in a nice tidy column - not very natural.

There are a couple of things poking me in the eye, just gently: the green in the distant hills is too dark against the blue - it should always be slightly lighter since the blue there is the base shadow colour. The dark blue stripes in the harbour are spoiling the flatness of the water.

I'm not sure if you've photographed this at an angle or painted it sloping to the left. The easiest way for you to tell is to view your painting in a mirror. An exciting painting Suzanne!

Painting

"Roberton Island" 30 x 60cm Oil on Canvas by Elena Sokolova

Elena it looks like you've really followed the demo video here and had a good time with the big brush and the credit card which is great to see - looks like fun to me. Maybe too much fun If there is such a thing, as the drawing seems to be pretty loose, whereas what I was aiming to instill is loose brushwork with solid drawing at its foundation. The painting works well from a distance but close up there's not enough attention to subtlety which I've seen you're capable of.

Good to see you've played with soft and sharp edges, especially in the distant hills which helps push them way back in space and creates an air of mystery. The blue in the hill is a little too blue compared to the greens and browns you've placed on top of it. I remember doing that too in my painting and I then had to darken the blue with a little red and yellow which also grayed it down. All of your blues could do with a little graying down in my eyes, even though they do make for a punchy painting I'm reminded of Clyde Aspevig suggesting that "taste equals restraint". You can gray a blue with a redish orange and white or a gray of equal value. Looks like you were painting with emotion Elena and that's rare, so I commend you for that. Keep it up!

Painting

"All I Desire V2" 55 x 60cm Oil on Canvas by Jon Main

Hi Jon you've got a good strong design here - I like how you've taken the trees out to the right. I would have liked to have seen the straight row of trees in the midground be curved a little more to continue the great S-curve you've got going here.

Great solid brushwork in the trees which remind me of Cezanne in the way he would carve chunky forms out with the brush. The overbrushing of light gray in the foreground however looks a little confused and the yellow poking through the trees isn't varied enough to make me believe I'm seeing through the trees to the beach and grasses below. The streaks and colour in the water on the harbour are lacking the same realism you've managed in your trees and a few of the boats look like the hulls are upside down because they curve down instead of up.

With all that flat land in the middle you could have dug out a beautiful big lagoon there which would have added much more interest and because I know the island well the lagoons seem conspicously absent to me. I like the fact that the sky is a collection of big bold brustrokes and it's good to see you've reigned yourself in enough to make the little details on the island which give the whole scene a sense of scale. Great work Jon!

 

My final painting

Demo Painting

"Roberton Island" 9x16" Oil on Canvas by Richard Robinson

"Roberton Island" 11x16" Oil in Canvas by Richard Robinson
(Painted en plein aire)

Another painting using the same concept:



"Mangawhai Evening" 14x14" Oil on Canvas by Richard Robinson





brush

Get the Demonstration Video

 

Demo Painting from workshop

Painting Workshop 20
'Roberton Island' : Big Brush, Credit Card
 

I once heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Are you painting the same way over and over again and expecting something different, something exciting!? Let's try something different today, let's see what happens if we put all our little brushes away and only use a BIG brush and a credit card. Have fun!

 
 
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