A little week ago, I got the challenge to paint an apple. And why not? I’ve painted an apple before, but at that time it was a digital painting and a realistic painting. Of an apple. Not so this time. I wanted to challenge myself and paint in a style I usually don’t try …
I want to be able to paint looser, with rough brush strokes. Much like I did with my autumn-painting, but even rougher, using larger brushes. Trying it with an apple, well, that seemed easy enough. Not that much that can go wrong ????
So, first, a thin brush, to make the black outline. Or well, first covering the canvas in a light brown colour, and then the outline. The next step was to find the main colours and drop them in, not worrying too much about getting it exactly right. Add some variations here and there.
Pink, yellow, orange, brown and red. That makes it a perfect red apple, right? And some dabs of different colours make the green leaves look a lot more detailed than what I painted.
I’m happy with it. I think I succeeded in what I set out to do.
I wanted to paint a lighthouse in stormy weather, and with the help of AI I made some images that I used for inspiration
It’s been way too long since I’ve updated this blog now. Shame on me. Admittedly, I did post my lighthouse painting on Instagram, but I never got as far as writing about it here. So, time to do something about that.
I painted this between Christmas and New Year, and was joined by mother who got inspired and wanted to paint a specific lighthouse on the Norwegian coast. One known as the most beautiful lighthouse in Norway. For me, it started with an idea: I wanted to paint a lighthouse, and I wanted it to be in stormy weather.
To achieve that I needed some reference pictures, but instead of searching for photos that I could use, I used one of the AI art generators to give me suggestions. A few tries and I got a few results that inspired me.
I mixed the ideas as I painted on the canvas; the sky from one image, the lighthouse and environment from another, and the waves varied a bit. The resulting picture is different from all of them, but I got the inspiration I wanted, and since the motive is imaginary in any case, I could easily take my artistic liberties and not make the lighthouse exactly as the picture. Although it mostly is. ????
There are still things I should practise, just to be able to paint better. There’s always something new to learn. Still, while I see the things I could do better, I’m still happy with what I made.
The topic: Trees. Theme: Autumn. At least, it was autumn for my part. And yes, this was a new challenge in the painting class, where we after an introduction to how different painters painted trees, and how their expressions changed during their lives, could either copy one of them, in our own styles or be inspired by them.
And there were many styles to choose from, too—anything from serene, naturalistic scenes to completely abstract, from many colours to few colours. Personally, I fell for a forest scene, with only trees. And painted in black and white (well, greys) except for one tree, with its leaves in full autumn colours. And a couple more.
That’s what I was inspired by. Except, I didn’t want a forest scene, I wanted something more urban. A little glimpse of the urban, but not any too straight lines. And, the result?
A few lines and squares in the background give the impression of buildings and windows. A car and a few streetlights make the impression stronger, and then the trees are in the foreground. Grey, except for the largest one in the middle, which is where all the golden autumn colours are concentrated. Spots of colours represent the leaves, both on the tree itself and fallen down on the ground.
All of this was done with loose brush strokes, much looser than the painting that inspired me, but – I’m happy with the result. It’s the first time I’ve tried something like that, so it was a win for me, all done in a short evening.
I am taking classes in acrylic painting this autumn, too. Technically the same class as before, according to the description, but we’ve always just continued from where we were on our path to professional artists. Or on the path to just enjoying painting in itself. This time, with a new teacher, things changed – but more about that in a later post.
Enough about that, except that we do get challenges every time. This summery painting of a sunflower field is the result of such a challenge.
A quick painting, but showing enough variety and detail to … make the impression there are details present. It’s really not, not much.
Around Halloween, it was time again for a new five-day portrait challenge from Paintable. Last time, this spring, was my first time trying it, and also my first time painting a portrait. At least in a serious way. Would I get a better result this time? Only one way to find out: I had to do it!
The task was like last time, except for one twist. Since Halloween was approaching fast, the final portrait should be of a monster; zombie, vampire, witch, whatever. Either make the monster from the start or take the finished painting and make it into a monster. I decided to make a vampire. A female one.
So I got my model, placed some lights where I wanted them to create the mood, and then I was ready to take the steps as usual.
Light, medium and dark skin tones. That’s how it’s usually done at this step. And I started that way, but … this time the lighting was more complicated. I had used both red and blue lights, and the shadows, were bluer. I had to fix that, so in my next step, the blue shadows were added in addition to the smoothing the colours.
With the colours I wanted in place, and smoothed out for a natural result, things are looking good. I still have to do something about that hair, and there are details that need to be taken care of.
Hair straightened out and made look more like hair. Earrings were added, in the shape of bats, of course. She’s a vampire, after all. Should the eyes stay blue, or should they be more mysterious? Red or yellow were too common for monsters – I made them purple. The teeth were still too white, so I changed those, too, slightly.
I also added the lighting to the background, and some other details, slightly out of focus. It’s already a lot better than the one I did in spring, but I want a final touch-up.
I wanted the hair to look even more like hair, so I spent some time brushing it. Digitally, at least. She got some slightly lighter irises, and some cute freckles were added. And a slight trickle of blood from the side of her mouth, after the free lovebites she’s been giving.
I haven’t forgotten about the traditional, analogue painting in favour of the digital versions, and I have no plans of giving it up. This summer I used acrylics again and painted some cascading waters. Was I finished, or did I need to do more?
I decided that I did not want to do more with it. Does that mean I’m finished with it? Well, let me quote a painter with more experience than me:
A painting is never finished, it is only abandoned
Leonardo da Vinci
Good enough answer?
Motive is inspired by (i.e. not identical to) a photo I took home on the island where I grew up. It shows that even a little stream can be a nice motive to paint. The motives don’t have to be limited to bigger, amazing views!
Admittedly, I bought something myself, too, that I got early in December. Something more special stuff, more in the style of what I wrote in Oh, the possibilities.
Yeah, I bought some LIT. Four containers of glow-in-the-dark powder, superbase – a medium to mix them with so I can use it as paint, and a little bottle of the mirrorest mirror chrome paint.
Did I have an idea of how to use it, or what to use it for, before I bought it all? Or did I just think it was cool?
Admittedly, I do think it’s cool, and that it can make some nice effects when used, but I did have a couple of ideas in mind when I decided to get it.
I got a few more ideas later.
Now I need to make some nice sketches to make those ideas stand out clearer to myself before I even start thinking of painting with it. But in the meantime, there are a lot of other paintings that I want to get to.
So, while I’m not saying what ideas I have myself, maybe you have got some playing around in your minds now? What are they?
It has been a while since the last update here now. To be honest, it’s been too long since I have managed to write something about my painting projects, and it has annoyed me quite a bit. The reason why is unfortunately an easy one.
I haven’t painted anything. Or rather, I haven’t finished painting anything. There are three paintings that I have started.
This was the situation until a few days before Christmas. The evening of the 21st December, I finally managed to do something again. I painted the cover of a sketchbook!
I wanted to give it away, so it was an extra encouragement to get it done. The inspiration came from a mural, and I figured: Hey, I can manage to make a space motive, and use some glow-in-the-dark medium.
That medium wasn’t quite as flowing as I had hoped. Getting thicker by the age? But I managed to make something nice out of it anyway.
All in all, while I could do more out of it by spending more time on it, I’m quite happy with the result and got some positive feedback on it, too. Mission satisfyingly completed.
A friend of mine took a picture and posted on Facebook â€“ and I instantly fell in love with it and wanted to paint it. Luckily she didn’t mind that, and even more luckily I found a canvas that suited the format perfectly: A tall picture, cell phone format ðŸ˜‰
At 35×70 cm, it’s the largest canvas I had painted on. Funnily enough, it’s also the painting that took shape the quickest for me. Almost like I’m starting to get some experience. Hmmm, could that be so?
Anyway, it’s a nice autumn picture, with the lovely autumn colours.
How could I not want to paint this? Sure, it’s a bit more simplistic than the photo I used as a reference, and there are always things I can get better at, but I’m learning! Most importantly though, I’m very happy with this. This is showing my abilities at present, and my current style of painting.
Seeing how I develop, both in knowledge, abilities and style is part of the fun, to be enjoyed in the time that comes. ðŸ˜‰
Last year (which is not that long ago) I made this little painting of the northern light – and tried it with a much looser brush than I’ve done in my paintings so far; they’ve been more detailed. But this was a well-received present, and I’ve been told it has got many nice comments.
It’s also a bit nice to hear about the little “wow” added when the light is turned off, and the glow in the dark effect is visible â€¦
It’s fun to experiment like this. Other ideas are forming in my head, too ðŸ˜‰