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Overdoing an Oil Painting Instruction Formula
2009-4-27 7:7:35 Post:long | Categories:doupine | Comment:0 | Quote:0 | Browse:

I am a big advocate of understanding your oil painting supplies inside and out. Of learning a repeatable procedure so that, in a way, making oil paintings becomes as much a procedure as carpentry.

The flip side of this is when people take it too far and think there is magic in something such as choosing which exact brush I am using to paint a certain area. This leads to the thinking that such and such a brush is my “leaf” brush and other ridiculous habits.

I have had some people complain that in some lessons I don’t explain things like what exact brush I am using and when or why I am using it.

When you get a basic education on the principles of oil painting, as much as I emphasize the “why?” aspect of teaching, there are just some things you are going to have to judge for yourself based on what you are comfortable with.

Some people go overboard with learning to paint and want to be told a formula for just about everything, even something as individual as choosing which brush to use to paint a certain object. And when they are not told this, they write off the lessons as incomplete or not for them.

I think this is from people who have gotten so used to the TV painters who use about 4 brushes to make all their oil paintings. So for example, when they paint a sky, they are always taught to use a 2 inch brush. If they have traditional materials, like 4 hogs hair flat brushes of sizes 2, 4, 6, and 8 and don’t have a 2 inch brush they become lost because they have learned that the 2 inch brush is their “sky brush”.

They are not learning principles of oil painting. They are being conditioned to depend on certain tools to almost make the picture for them.

If you took away a 2 inch brush and fan brush, you should still be able to paint. If you are lost, this is a clear indication you have not learned the principles of oil painting. You have only learned to become dependent on a few brush tricks to paint one type of picture.

Once you learn the principle of oil painting, you will become more comfortable with some brushes more than others. It’s just human nature. Maybe you will prefer brushes slightly bigger and a different shape than I would use. But, if you understand the principles of oil painting you can still create your pictures with them.

Citation | Tags: oil  painting,oil  paintings  

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