Part 5: Creating a Critter from My Mind

Painting from your imagination provides opportunities to experiment with different techniques. Most experiments are a dismal failure, but some result in happy accidents. When you are happy with an experiment, you have learned a new technique to add to your repertoire of skills.

My favorite brush for painting fur/feathers is a script liner – especially for simultaneously painting both texture and form. The critter’s forehead appears to be both furry and three dimensional. An under-painting of the beak establishes form with several values of pink/red.

Tip: Never place a script liner brush (or other soft brush) sitting on its hairs in a container of water. If the hairs become permanently curved, the brush is ruined. Also, avoid soap that contains oil or moisturizer – oil and acrylics don’t mix (just as oil and water don’t mix).

5

Part 3: Creating a Critter from My Mind

Creating an artwork from your imagination is like driving a car in a foreign country without a destination – you never know where you’re going to end up.

My background colors have already changed! The old fur (feather) colors were too similar to the previous background. By adding a little green, the fur stands out better.

Experienced artists have their favorite brushes and techniques for painting fur. I love my liners (scrip liners) – they hold lots of thinned paint and can make lines that begin wide and taper off to points. Simply apply pressure to the brush when you start the line and gradually ease off until the lines ends at a point. If your painting is small, rotate the canvas so you’re always using only sideways and downward strokes.

3.jpg

Part 2: Creating a Critter from My Mind

Using oils to paint a smoothly-blended, multi-colored background is relatively easy because of their lengthy drying time. On the down side, additional layers can’t be added to the background for a few days. Conversely, acrylics dry within minutes and therefore entail a different painting approach.

Thin layers of acrylic paint can be added over one another as soon as the paint dries (15-30 minutes). You can even “erase” (paint over) mistakes and sections you don’t like.

If you want to slow down the drying process, mix a little “retarder” (manufactured by Golden) into each paint color. However, make sure you thoroughly mix the retarder into the paint or you’ll end up with lumps (paint that didn’t get any thinner).

By working the background with layers of thinned paint, I can simply play with values and colors. The background colors are similar to those I plan to use for the emu’s fur/feathers (yellows and browns).  I begin with a few thin base coats to establish preliminary values and colors (which will no doubt change as I work).

My chosen light source is from the upper frontal right. I plan to paint the background’s darker values behind the emu’s lightest values (on the upper right and right side). Conversely, the lighter values need to be behind the darkest values (on the lower left and left side).

2.jpg

Part 1: Creating a Critter from My Mind

On a personal note, I started this painting over two years ago but encountered additional vision problems (I’ve always been blind in one eye and now the other eye is giving problems). Being somewhat stubborn, giving up is not an option.

Creating drawings and paintings without any references is extremely enjoyable. You begin with nothing – in this case an empty canvas. Emus and ostriches are irresistible, silly-looking critters that always make me smile. My blank mind soon had a drawing of an emu on my blank canvas (at least I think it’s an emu).

I haven’t painted for a long time. The drawing part was easy; the painting itself will be challenging. My brushes are dusted off and ready to go!

EMU 1

50+ Free Art Lessons!

All 490+ art lessons on my website are authored and richly illustrated by professional artists and art educators. Choose your passion! Draw with graphite and colored pencils; paint with acrylics; learn about art history and art therapy; and more!

Join Drawspace!

The 50+ free lessons are marked in green with “FREE”.  Register for free and receive 3 Credits every month to view or download any other 3 lessons you want.

Sign in or Register Today

Lessons are categorized into 8 modules (and 18 topics).

Module 1: Introduction to Drawing

Module 2: Contour Drawing

Module 3: Shading Techniques

Module 4: Composition and Perspective

Module 5: Diversity in Visual Arts

Module 6: People and Animals

Module 7: The Lighter Side of Art

Module 8: Creating Art in Color

Figure 1.jpg

Explore the Art of Self Discovery!

Express Yourself through Art Therapist Judith Campanaro!

My dear friend, Judith, gently provides guidance for an inspirational journey toward self-empowerment through creative expression.

bulldog laughing at another dog dressed up with clown wig

Art therapy is a unique experience based on using the medium of art as an instrument of change. Rather than learning conventional techniques and modalities, art therapy approaches the medium in a natural experiential way.

Here’s four of the 46 lessons authored by Judith on my website:

Introduction to Art Therapy (5.3.R1 – 10 Pages and 7 Illustrations)

Understanding art therapy and how creating art enables you to enhance your well-being

VIEW / DOWNLOAD

 

Exercises to Build Confidence (5.3.A6 – 8 Pages and 13 Illustrations)

Gift yourself with enlightening activities to help enhance your personal growth, physical well-being, and self-esteem

VIEW / DOWNLOAD

 

Exploring the Art of Self Discovery (5.3.R2 – 8 Pages and 7 Illustrations)

Embracing the powers of clarity and choice as instruments for enriching personal growth

VIEW / DOWNLOAD

 

Voyage of Discovery (5.3.A8 – 2 Pages and 4 Illustrations)

Create a contour drawing with glue, add bright colors with watercolor paints, and outline shapes with a black marker

VIEW / DOWNLOAD

 

Cuddles the Cow!

I don’t have a style. The artistic freedom of not being pigeonholed empowers me to just have fun creating whatever strikes my fancy!

Besides, when styles are critiqued and/or examined by others, the resulting labels often focus more on a particular historical period or artistic movement rather than the creation or its creator. In my humble opinion, the entity known as style is simply an accumulation of an artist’s inherent preferences, life experiences, artistic philosophy, personal goals, and academic background.

blog16

%d bloggers like this: