PAINTING TIPS FOR DUMMIES…

from a dummy.

I have zero artistic talent. None, whatsoever. Back at school, my friends would spend hours during art lessons, focusing all their attention on the centre piece. They would squint to focus on the image every time they looked up and they drew with intricate wrist movements, using a variety of tools to imitate the look of the object in the centre of the room. I, on the other hand, would finish in no more than 10 minutes. I would hand in my work to the teacher, who would only just sigh, knowing that the weeks of training me to have the slightest bit of artistic flare had gone down the drain.

Its been many years since then and although my patience for drawing has not changed, I have learned to appreciate the skill and dedication needed to fill a blank canvas. I have also found a new love for geometric drawings and painting block colours. Long gone are the days where I tried to draw streams, forests or skeletons in the centre of art classroom.

I started drawing one line pictures and used blocks of colour to create repetitive patterns. At this point, my godfather (an excellent painter) gifted me some acrylic paint. I immediately YouTubed ‘easy painting tutorials’ and came across one that easy enough for me to try.

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I used a mix of poster and acrylic paint. The reason for this is because poster paint can easily be manipulated due to its soluble nature and acrylic is not water soluble. The advantage of acrylic paint is that it gives the painting a softer finish. Mixing both paints allowed me to create new colours without waste and have a cleaner finish. The brand of poster paint I used was Giotto. It’s amazing; inexpensive and comes in an array of beautiful colours.  

First, I dabbed my paintbrush in orange and topped it off with some white. It was important not to mix the colours as that would have given me a light orange. Instead, I wanted a strong orange tone with white streaks. I painted on a landscape piece of card, starting in the middle of the page and working my way down. 

Next I moved to the top of the page. I painted the entire top half white before adding a bright pink to it. With the pink, I worked my way downwards until it met the orange. At this point, I continued to mix a blend of pinks, whites and oranges until it looked as though both colours ran seamlessly through each other. 

Next, it was time to tackle the mountains. I started by drawing some blue lines 3/4 of the way down the page. I started filling some of the colour, but it wasn’t necessary to complete the entire painting since I was going to add more colours. The point of this was to create a shadowing effect, as if the sun had just slowing started rising.

I repeated the mountain effect 3 more times, using a darker colour each time until the final colour used was black. To create more of a mountain range effect I made sure to layer them over each other. Over the third layer (greyish – black), I decided to dab my paintbrush over the wet paint to add some texture in the painting. Once the entire sheet had dried, I painted a golden circle. After all, what would a sunrise be without the sun?



Now, might I warn you that just because I’m giving a painting tutorial doesn’t NOT mean I’m any good. I purely paint as a form of therapy and relaxation. If you would like to see the actual tutorial, it can be found here.

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