Tuesday, May 26, 2015

How Can I Improve My Paintings?

Drawing Classes Starting June 1
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I get asked this at pretty much every class that I teach.  My answer is always, draw, draw, draw.  Yes, I know, I have heard that a zillion times, but the fact is, it really is true.

If you can not draw it, imagine how much harder it is to paint it when you are dealing with drawing (proportionsa and form modeling) as well as color and paint handling.

For years I did not do thumbnail sketches and pencil studies prior to starting a painting as I was so anxious to dive in and hey, I only have a few hours here and there to get stuff done.  I would use a grid to draw out a reasonably quick outline sketch of my subject and then it was on to the paint.

Without fail though, I would struggle so much during the painting process, unsure as to what I was really seeing.  The painting, more often than not, turned out ok in the end, but it was always such a struggle and I did not feel like I was improving nearly as quickly as I felt I should be.

So I broke down and thought, ok, I will try doing a decent sketch first, working out all the values (lights and darks) and really getting a firm handle on how the light was affecting my subject prior to even thinking about painting.

As it turns out, I love working this way, it is a luxury I thought I could not "afford" time wise.  I fully enjoy the drawing process which usually does not take long.  This way I have a fully rendered sketch to work from as well as the photo or subject from life. Then, once I move onto paint, I am so aware of every nook & cranny of my subject, that all I really need to deal with is color and paint handling. Yeah, just that ;) 

But I have worked out most of the form and composition issues so the painting process has become much less of a struggle and more of a pleasure.  In the end, I also spend less time on a painting, including the drawing time.  Go figure, those teachers that told me to draw more time and time again really knew what they were talking about :)

If you would like to draw with me, I have a drawing class starting June 1, 2015 please register online registration or call (604) 931-2008 for more information.  We will use several time tested methods to progress from drawing a 2 dimensional image accurately and then progress to drawing a three dimensional object from life using casts and still life objects.

No experience necessary. All professional quality supplies included and are to take home at the end of the class. Please register early as registration closes prior to start date.

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