Painting? Seriously?

So, I started painting. Attending classes to learn how to express me through acrylics, in a way that looks good. While I’ve always had an artistic side, it’s the first time I’ve tried acrylics, and for one single exception the first time I’ve seriously tried painting. (Whatever I did with watercolours when I was a child I don’t count as serious work.)

Of course, to start painting some things are a necessity. Like paint. Some of which I had bought before I even had enjoyed the thought of attending the classes. Acrylics are also nice to paint other objects with, like figures and models. I bought a set of paints for that – never got around to do anything about it though. But I will. Some time.

This means that when I signed up for the classes, I already had some paints. Even in the colours I should have. As luck wanted it, they were even bought in the shop where they sold the recommended brand. Or at least one recommended brand. I also bought myself an easel and a starter set with paint, brushes, wooden palette and even a canvas in that same shop. Turned out the brushes were more suited for oil painting, but I’ve bought more brushes and canvases from other shops, so no problem.

The Sang colours and starter set

So, why was the brand sold in one shop recommended over another shops own brand of acrylics? It was due to the amount of pigments in the paint and how well it covered. Good thing I bought my paint from the “correct” shop then.

Amsterdan and Søstrene Grene

Except – they sold two different brands. I had bought the other brand. Only the name of the shop had been mentioned, not the brand of the recommended paint, so how could I know?

Now, it didn’t prevent me from enjoying painting, and how was the brand I bought, Sang, compared to the other brand, Liquitex Basic, anyway? Amateur as I am, I didn’t feel I had a bad paint – it seemed to cover nicely. I even bought a silver-colour from the not recommended Søstrene Grene for a special project. That colour was very pigmented and covered very well. I also bought a recommended colour, Paynes Grey, from yet another brand, Amsterdam. That one’s still untested, though…

It was Liquitex and Sang that was on my mind, though, and after a while, I did get a bit curious, though. How did Sang compare? Time to turn to the internet.

I found quite a bit of tests and comparisons between different brands. Many different brands, most of which I don’t remember now. The only one I remember the name of is one called Folk Art. As that one was irrelevant to me, I don’t remember how it did, except it wasn’t bad. Liquitex had two variations, the Basic and one Artist Quality, even more pigmented and better covering. Amsterdam also did well. But Sang? I didn’t find anything about it, except on the shop pages. No help there, so I guess I have to test out myself. I’ve bought some Liquitex colours myself now.

Oh dear, when did I get these?
Varnish makes the colours pop!

While writing this article, it occurred to me that I hadn’t searched for any test of Søstrene Grene, so now I did. One page popped up, where their brand actually was described as a good buy; more pigmented than other well-known brands, and cheap. Not artist quality, but still…

Before I sat down writing, I also got another surprise: While looking for something completely different, more paint turned up. Acrylics. Of the Folk Art brand. I have no recollection of that one – I must’ve had it for years, unopened. Well, it’s going to be fun, trying it all out. What’s “best” also depends on the painting style, I’ve learned. 😃🎨

So with all this said, the question remains: Painting – do I take it seriously?

In the World Of Dragons

So, a fantasy motive, right? With a castle, and a flying dragon. Bathing in the moonlight. That should be my next painting. And as previously mentioned, I’ve started on it.

Of course, I can’t just pop outside and take a photo with my camera to have something to paint after. After all, there’s not exactly plentiful of castles around here …

But I don’t paint it completely freehand, either. I made a quick little mashup in Photoshop so that I have a motive to paint after. So while I don’t have a painting to show yet, I can at least show the photoshopped version. It will be exciting to see how close I get it. (It certainly won’t be identical.)

Dragon on the way home from a barbeque party …

Painting With Acrylics

I’ve started learning to paint with acrylics. Classes one evening per week, for ten weeks. How successful will I be, and how good will I become? No idea. It’ll take a lot longer than the ten weeks before I’m really satisfied with what I manage to do, and I can say this with the knowledge that the nine first evenings are over. So there’ll be much painting after the course is over too.

But of course, that’s what I intended anyway; learn how to paint, so that I have a new hoppy to spend some time on. Unfortunately, I haven’t managed to paint as much outside of the classes as I hoped, due to Real Life TM being filled with not only fun stuff. But I’m not complaining – I’m having fun with painting.

A grey box

The first evening was a test to see what we could do: A simple motive in black and white. Or rather, various grey tones.

Our first task: Paint a grey box

The lesson here was for us to learn how to mix black and white to make the various needed grey tones, get the right perspective on the box, and actually paint it. Our teacher could then see where the different of us needed help, which varied a lot: Some had painted before, others not at all.

Homework after this was to find a picture we’d like to paint. Abstract or naturalistic, that was up to us.

My first “real” acrylic painting

I found a lot of potential pictures before I settled for a photo of an old building partly in ruins.

My painting after 4-5 evenings

So I primed the canvas with a dirty ochre colour, so that a bright white canvas won’t fool the eyes and make it harder to get the correct colour values, outlined the motive with a coloured pencil, and started painting.

It is quite a bit more detailed than the simple, grey box, so it should come as no surprise that it took longer than one evening. The picture I show here is after for or five evenings (plus a bit at home) – but there are still a few details I want to change a bit before I get it as I want. However, I thought it was finished enough for me to start another picture.

That picture is still unfinished, and not one I’d like to show here right now. Someday I will though. A fantasy motive with a castle and a flying dragon in the moonlight.