|10 Brushstroke Pear Exercise--6x6 oil (collection of the artist)|
|10 Brushstroke Bluebird Figurine 6x6 oil on panel (collection artist)|
I painted three 6x6 inch panels with simple subjects (these aren’t the Grand Canyon but they could be) and a 10 stroke limit or par for any of you golfers out there. After just three small paintings I was already thinking about my brushwork in a very different way. What else did I learn?
- Remember Jaws? Well, for this, we’re gonna need a bigger brush! And more paint. Bigger Brush. More Paint. Just keep saying it…
- Use the canvas (in this case I toned with a warm quin gold acrylic wash) to your advantage. Consider what canvas shapes might stay “unpainted” and work as part of your overall composition. (Master paintings like Richard Schmid, CW Mundy, etc. will often use the "raw" canvas in their overall design.\)
- Find the 10 most important shapes and paint those. What details can you leave out?
- Paint rather than draw (or outline) your shapes. Feel the form with your brush.
- Vary your brushwork—push, pull, twist, stab, etc. to get the most out of your brush.