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Exercises For Brush Control

28 Jun
chinese brush practice

Chinese Brush Painting made easier using a giant serving tray as a mixing palette.

Chinese Brush Painting was one of many items on my Art “To-Do” list.  I had heard from others that it would be helpful in learning control of the brush.  I’ve been painting for a long time so I knew some techniques but I was happy to find that daily Chinese Brush painting practice has helped my painting.

Masters of Chinese Brush Painting study the art for many years and create some of the most beautiful paintings and calligraphy.  I was more interested in building the brush work into my daily habits.

Some of the exercises include painting bands of color, laying varying colors side by side (steady hand practice), and painting thick and thin lines using the tip and base of the brush (practicing pressure).  Painting fast lines with a wrist flick and cutting shapes are more exercises.  These are only some of the many exercises to try.

If you haven’t tried Chinese Brush Painting and you want to strengthen your brush control, give it a try.  There are many inexpensive books to help guide you in the process.  You can even use YouTube to get an idea of how to paint this way.

Here are some online resources: http://education.asianart.org/explore-resources/background-information/introduction-chinese-brushpainting-techniques

http://asia-art.net/chinese_brush.html

https://www.wikihow.com/Start-Chinese-Brush-Painting

https://youtu.be/qF3EbR8y8go

 

 

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Transforming Reality

23 Mar
Confetti Mountain

“Confetti Mountain” Watercolor by Katie Turner

In allowing greater creativity to unfold in my paintings, I’ve worked hard to eliminate and simplify.  Without losing too many of my white areas, I built an abstract foundation with delicate calligraphic accents to evoke an illusion of reality.  Most of the time I like to use larger brushes because they force me to stay loose.  The reality of the scene in front of me may include many excellent details but the simplification and editing can help me to transform it into more of a feeling.  Transforming reality is my key to freedom.  ~ Katie

Munch Created His Own Style

6 Mar
the-scream

The Scream, 1893 by Edvard Munch

Edvard Munch (1863-1944), the Norwegian artist whose art covered themes of love, death, isolation and pain had developed his own style.

Although he had health issues, particularly in his younger years, he painted almost every day.  His last thirty years he spent mostly in isolation, producing a phenomenal amount of work (around 1,100 paintings).

His paintings were constantly changing and he often would repeat paintings, changing subtle things each time.  Munch is considered a unique artist due to his fluidity, meaning his style was changing from day to day and period to period.

Not all of his paintings were masterpieces and some of his most famously renowned paintings had critics who loved them and also critics who hated them.

Although he was accused of copying the styles of Cezanne, Van Gogh and Renoir he denied it saying that yes, some of his techniques may be similar but his painting was unique and with these other artists, he was only related in time.

Munch was both criticized and praised for his innovative “turpentine paintings” which allowed the canvas to be visible.  He spent years developing his “turpentine paintings” techniques.  Although he was aware of the influence of his contemporaries, Munch always remained faithful to his own style.

To view some of his paintings click here: http://munchmuseet.no/en/munch

Developing Tenacity

21 Feb
The Starry Night by Van Gogh

The Starry Night by Van Gogh

Van Gogh must have felt a lot of satisfaction staring at a completed piece he had just finished.  Maybe he felt sad that he wasn’t a financial success but I bet he felt the excitement of completing a good painting.

Van Gogh sold only one painting while he was alive yet he produced 900 paintings and over 1000 amazing drawings that we enjoy today.  It doesn’t seem like he was discouraged enough to give up on the art.  It seems Van Gogh created with drive and passion.

As creative people, we will face difficulty and discouragement.  Will we keep creating our art?  Van Gogh sets a good example for those who might be discouraged.  To read more about Van Gogh’s and his art, visit https://www.vincent-van-gogh-gallery.org/  To see more of my art, visit  https://fineartamerica.com/artists/4+katie+turner  or my website http://www.ktartstudio.com/

red flowers with abstract design

Red Flowers, Mixed Media Painting by Katie Turner

Color Grid for Copic

24 Jan

Distant Blue smallest with logo

Most of us have heard of Copic markers which are a favorite brand among many artists.  I have a few of these (as well as many less expensive brand markers) that I use for illustrations.  I was interested to read that Copic has reworked their website with various improvements.  Their “Collect” and “Feed” sections have a large concise color grid and there is also a section of how to use these markers, best papers, airbrushing, shading, how to refill and store, and more.  Detailed instructions help the artist to understand how to use these coded markers for projects.  You can view the new website here: https://www.copicmarker.com/

Cadmium-Free Paint

18 Dec

Today I received a sample of paint from Liquitex.  They have a new Cadmium-Free acrylic paint out and are encouraging artists to test their paint and see if you can really tell the difference between the Cadmium-Free and the regular paint.  Some artists say that the Cadmium paints are more vibrant with better opacity but there is a health risk with Cadmium.  Here are my test samples below.   I don’t know which tube, A or B has the cadmium but will have to visit liquitex.com to learn the results of their artist challenge.  I really couldn’t tell the difference.   They both seem to function the same with the same coverage.   If you would like read more about it, go to https://www.liquitex.com/cadmium-free-challenge/

 

liquitex tubes

a testb test

Inspired Mandalas

31 Oct
fruit and logo

Simple Shapes to Inspire Mandala Drawing

madala flower with logo

Mandala Drawing

Mandala Fruit with logo

Fruit Inspired Mandals Drawing, Ink & Watercolor

Mandala flower with logo

Mandala Drawing using stencils

Mandala means “circle” in Sanskrit.  It signifies wholeness and usually begins with a central point with patterns that radiate outward.  Louise Gale (Mandala For the Inspired Artist by Walter Foster Publishing) explains that we are “to think of a mandala as a sacred space.”

Mandalas can occur in nature and are seen in flowers, the moon, the sun, and more.  Although Mandalas are specifically associated with Hindu, Buddhist and Tibetan artwork the geometric patterns can be seen in other cultures.  Often you will see them on buildings, in various art forms, and in religious text and religious items around the world.

I photographed some fruit I had in my home.  The kiwi, clementine and tomato were sliced in half and have some very interesting shapes within.  They gave me a creative starting point for my drawings.  I found the process very relaxing, giving me time to reflect on the intricate beauty of simple things.  Take a look around your home or office and see if you can find simple items to inspire your own Mandala drawing.

http://www.KTArtStudio.com