SIGMA+

a personal art course, but with too many words and not enough drawings

Archive for the ‘Painting’ Category

Digital vs. Traditional

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The fantastic Paul Lasaine has put up an interesting acrylic vs. digital post. The most interesting bit for me was how so little detail can suggest so much, something I just can’t get to grips with yet. I know that less is more, but it’s so very hard to avoid the temptation to use a tiny brush and start detailing one portion of the work while ignoring how everything fits together in the big picture.

Can you tell which is which?

Edit Of course you couldn’t. I uploaded the same image twice by accident. Fixed now.

(C) Paul Lasaine

I remember always going ‘hmm, this is probably Photoshop‘ whenever I saw concept art in ‘The Making Of…’ art books in the past. Then I looked more closely at the LOTR ones and realized they weren’t. I don’t quite know why, but it had a pretty profound impact on me at that moment. Maybe it’s because I was still thinking of art media as ends, not means.

Original post: PAUL LASAINE

Written by krysjez

October 24, 2010 at 9:38 pm

‘Sticky’ acrylic paints

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Helpful notes on acrylic paint from Ilaekae of the ConceptArt forums. I went searching after noticing that my acrylic-painted Sculpey dinosaur was still sticky after a week.

I think what you’re questioning isn’t a “drying” problem as much as it is a natural tendency for many plastics to be “sticky” or “soft” to the touch. The copolymers used in painting don’t become “hard” the way an oil painting or varnish does, especially in heavy straight applications, but have a through-and-through softness that is normal to the medium. That’s why your fingernail mark pops back out to some degree, and why you can make a mark in the first place. This causes problems with dirt and nicotine/smoke in the air collecting on the paint surface faster than with varnished pieces and oils. It also causes MAJOR problem if acrylic paintings are stored face to face, or pushed up against each other front to back. NEVER stack paintings on canvas panels on top of each other–the weight of the pile will make them stick together enough to damage them when you try to separate them. This isn’t as big a problem when additives (sand, glass beads, dirt, etc.) are added to increase the texture/thickness of the paint since it breaks up the slick uniform surface.

Written by krysjez

October 23, 2010 at 6:08 pm

Posted in Painting, Tips

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Which acrylic medium should I use?

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This is what happens when you set me loose on the internet while I’m studying for my SOVA (Study of Visual Art) exam tomorrow.

I love the Winsor & Newton web site because there are a lot of good articles on both artmaking and the history of art materials. As can be expected the articles usually refer only to W&N products, but many of the basic products can be found in other manufacturers’ catalogs as well. Today’s post is a  handy diagram from their guide to acrylic mediums page:

Some other products mentioned that might be useful to you in your own work:

Due to its creamy consistency, I often use it instead of white paint because it blends so much easier…I prefer it to Titanium White…

  • My hero James Gurney uses acrylic matte medium to seal his pencil drawings first before beginning to paint. As the chart shows it “decreases gloss” and “reduces consistency” if you mix it with your paint.

I’ve been trying to do a bit of impasto in the middle of a painting but the impasto effect is proving ridiculously hard to achieve. I could use some of that modeling paste about now…

Written by krysjez

July 2, 2010 at 3:59 pm

What the hue?

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An old, but still useful post about “hue” in paints by Mark Golden (of Golden Paints):

I do understand that many hue designated colors are less expensive imitations of the hue and chroma position of more expensive colors. In fact we make replacements hue colors for the Cadmiums and the Cobalt pigment. These are important colors, especially for Universities that are required to keep the heavy metal Cads and Cobalts out of their waste streams. There is a significant difference using a Cobalt Blue Hue versus a real Cobalt Blue or a Cadmium Yellow or Red Hue versus a real Cadmium. It is wonderful that teachers want students to use the real thing. But professors please tell your students that buying a Hookers Green Hue is a much more appropriate choice than using the old – non-lightfast, real Hookers Green.

Full post here: http://www.goldenpaints.com/blog/2006/plastic-arts/the-truth-about-hues/

Written by krysjez

May 31, 2010 at 10:37 pm

Posted in Painting, Tips

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Oil Paints!

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Oil paints!

Originally posted on my main blog.

So, yes, oil paints. I got 5 colors today, from the student Winton range by Winsor & Newton (slightly cheaper than the Artist’s Oil Colour range, and all colors cost the same).

Cadmium Red Hue (slow drying)
I was trying to decide between Pale Red, Indian Red (both of which are oxides, so they have a more rust-like color), Permanent Alizarin Crimson and Cad Red Hue for reds. I’d read that something called Venetian Red is well suited to a limited palette like what the old masters used, and that the closest substitutes here would be Indian Red, followed by Light Red. But then another source said P. Alizarin Crimson was very common on many artists’ palettes. I felt it was a bit too pinkish, but what do I know, really? Anyway finally I read Cad Red was more versatile so I got that.

From the online Winton color chart:

Light Red Indian Red Permanent Alizarin Crimson Cadmium Red Hue

Burnt Sienna (medium drying)
This was originally Payne’s Grey, until I read online that Burnt Sienna is dead useful.

Titanium White (medium drying)

Cadmium Yellow Pale Hue (slow drying) 

French Ultramarine (medium drying)

W&N have also got a series called Artisan Water Mixable Oil Colourwhich I was quite interested in, because I don’t really like dealing with solvents. I couldn’t find it at Art Friend though (or maybe I saw and forgot). Speaking of solvents, I picked up a jar of Low Odor Thinner (Daler-Rowney), left it on a shelf while I went to swap Indian Red for Cad Red Hue, and forgot to buy it.

I also saw W&N’s oil “canvas” (actually just textured and treated paper) pads. A pad of 10 sheets costs about $13, so I decided to just use my existing acrylic pad (20 sheets for the same price). As far as I could tell the difference is in the finish of the paper – oil pads feel a bit more like canvas, they do feel a bit like cloth – whereas D-R’s System3 pad looks a little bit smoother and glossier.

The staff at Art Friend sucked today. Maybe they were hungry (I went around noon). The weekend people are much better.

Written by krysjez

May 31, 2010 at 10:18 pm

Posted in Painting, Tools & Purchases

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Thinking About Oil

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Today was the last day of school. This means that I am now free to go to Art Friend and buy a box of student oil paints. Or maybe I can borrow from the art room. Hmm…

Swore-Never-To-Use-Acrylic-Again Acrylic Painting (SNTUAAAP, pronounced AAARGH) is getting along okay, slowly, but okay. Well, as ‘okay’ as a painting can be when you’re not really painting, just using the back cover of Newsweek to prevent your hand from smudging the graphite from the pencil.

From http://www.buzzle.com/articles/oil-painting-lesson-introduction-supports.html:

For those artists who may be on a tight budget but still want a descent [sic] quality surface to paint on, then canvas pads are a good choice. Canvas pads come in a variety of different sizes and are great for beginners who are just starting out. Canvas pads are great for practice or doing studies. Make certain you get a heavy weight canvas pad suitable to hold oil paint.

Yeah. So I think I’ll go buy one sometime.

Crap, this was meant to be a long and in-depth kind of thing but I was watching The Guild and it’s almost 11pm, so no more for now.

Written by krysjez

May 27, 2010 at 10:44 pm

Posted in Painting, Tools & Purchases

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Quick Update

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Well, it’s been quite some time since I last updated here.

I’m currently working on an acrylic painting, despite swearing never to touch acrylic again at the age of 12. Sigh…for various reasons I can’t show images of the painting right now, but here’s a photo from the studio:18052010145 An upturned table (only this kind of table, unfortunately) makes a very good brush holder + tape-sticking area + place to store bottles of paint + place to keep water! If you spill the water it gets contained by the table edges.

On other fronts, my grand plan for un-sucking my art remains pathetically unrealized. I’ve been trying to sketch more people from real life but my strokes are really horribly messy and you can’t tell what I’m drawing.

What the hell? I’m not that hairy.

— A subject

Written by krysjez

May 19, 2010 at 10:18 pm

Posted in Drawing, Painting

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