Here’s a simple tip that can greatly improve your art. When trying to assess a photo reference or your painting to see if the large shapes within the composition are pleasing, squint. If your eyes are only open a tiny slit, it will eliminate a lot of detail and allow you to see the main shapes. It is also an effective way to analyse the dark and light pathways of your image. Moving far away from the painting can have a similar effect, but squinting is very useful, and faster. Try it with the painting shown here – a detail from one of my oil paintings. Can you see how it makes it easier to identify light, medium and dark areas and how they relate to each other?
Last weekend I went to see the Paint Ontario art show in Grand Bend. It is an amazing display – so many wonderful paintings! If you haven’t been yet, I think you would find it worthwhile. The show ends March 31st – so not much time left! Also, if you go down Greenway Road, which is almost right beside the Lambton Heritage Museum which hosts the show, the flocks of tundra swans may still be there. A special thanks to Barry Richmond for all the work he puts into organizing this show every year. And congratulations to my students who have work there – some have red dots too! Veggie Shapes – Original Oil by Cheryl O – currently showing at Paint Ontario. Here’s the link for more information: “Paint Ontario”
With watercolour, it’s that mesmerizing flow of colour, that transparent glow. With acrylic, it’s the marvelous ability to quickly layer, and layer some more and build the excitement as each layer grows. With oils, it’s the sensual creaminess that makes blending and gradations shere delight. My favourite type of paint? Whatever is on my brush at the moment.
I love teaching art. There is so much joy in helping others grow their creative side. I teach students to understand colour mixing, about shapes and composition, about finding a unique creative voice. Is this something you have been wanting to try? So many people find that being in class is a great way to get inspired to pick up that pencil or brush. New drawing classes start this Wednesday – absolute beginners welcome, and there is a one day Saturday workshop you could join on Sept. 23. That Saturday we will work step-by-step through van Gogh’s Starry night (featured here). For all the details, check out this link: Art Courses with Cheryl O