February 2018 Newsletter
BILLY-O was the judge for the 2018 GPA annual Show. He returned this evening to critique comments for those who entered. I have captured some of his wisdom and insight on what he looks for and tips to help in your future paintings.
- Be aware not to divide your painting in half either horizontally or vertically. Sometimes having a piece of paper to cover up will help you identify if this is happening in your painting
- When you have a nice reflective light happening in the background, make sure to add this color into the subject matter. i.e. if you have a nice yellow or blue background add this same color into the subject (whether that is a barn, clothing and or skin tone.)
- Keep in mind when you are doing plein air with many other artists. Make sure not to paint the same subject. If all are painting a barn or a road, think about it and find another subject matter to help your painting stand out as different from the “pack”.
- Make sure your painting has depth and relatable colors, make sure to watch your marks and where they fall. One wrong mark can destroy your depth of field and perspective. Again, use a piece of paper to cover and see what is working and what is not.
- Something that can throw a painting off, is if the perspective is wrong. Make sure your values are correct. Values in foreground vs the distant trees should be lighter and cooler in color. If your perspective is off it will throw your whole painting off!
- Another tip from Billy-O is don’t follow the photo as gospel, you as the artist should consider exaggerating the perspective and it can help enhance. Not make the perspective wrong(not make sense) but enhance/exaggerate to make the viewer know that that is a mountain, not a hill
- When you see round shapes (rings in water or circles) these need to change as they go into the distance to elliptical shapes
- Best of Show piece by Deanna Nash – lots of mood and fun. Reminds him of Frank Brangwyn. Imagery is wonderful. A lot of little masses add fun to the composition and movement. Note it helps to make larger shapes next to these moments for your eye to have a place to rest. She has done this well in this painting.
1. Make sure to repeat color in your painting. If large flat color shape, it will reflect in the subject
2. When in doubt of your painting and the balance of it, cover areas and check to see if feels right
3. Painting mist or fog, make sure to observe and punch up color, it will add more energy to your painting
4. Quick Tip- add an acetate over your painting and put paint on it to see if corrections or additions will work. Since it is pastel, maybe tape a scrap piece of sanded paper onto the acetate or use acrylic paint on this overlay. Sometimes just cropping a different direction will make the painting work.
5. Make sure to watch the placement of your sunlight source and adjust the shadows. It has to make sense or it will throw your painting off.
6. Add emotion/feeling into your painting, it will attract your viewer and keep them there
7. Quick tip: blues in sky get stronger as you go up in sky. There is actually a rounded band of color. So if you are plein air painting and looking to south west, once side of your sky saturation will be higher than the other due to this band
8. Light things reflect darker in the water – sometimes it is okay to break the rules. Just make sure it works.