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Problem Solving For Oil Painters

This is the table of content (TOC) of "problem solving for oil painters", an excellent book that you can also read it online partially here

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Because the TOC is publicly available, I take the opportunity to reproduce it and modify it for our purposes: making us a better artist.

These following questions are in fact appropriate for all painters, not only for oil painters.

IDEA

  • Is there a good abstract idea underlying the picture?
  • What details could be eliminated to strengthen the composition?
  • Does the painting have focus? In other words, what is the focal point?
  • Are the unessential parts subordonated? (keep the picture simple!)
  • Does the painting "read"? (Do you provide the viewers eye with paths to follow?)
  • Could you finish any part of painting?

 

SHAPES

  • Are the dominat shapes as strong and simple as possible?
  • Are the shapes too similar?

 

VALUE

  • Could the value range be increased?
  • Could the number of values be reduced?

Remember also when you draw with a pencil to you all possible value tones and not just 3 or 4, but 10 to give your drawing a realistic look! this advise was from one of my preferred teachers David N. kitler (here).

 

LIGHT

  • Is the subject effectively lit?
  • Is the light area big enough?
  • Would the light look stronger with a suggestion of burnout?
  • Do the lights have a continous flow?
  • Is the light gradated?

 

SHADOW

  • Do the shadow shapes describe the form?
  • Are the shadows warm enough?

 

DEPTH

  • Would the addition of foreground material deepen the space?
  • Does the background recede far enough?
  • Are the halftones properly related to the background?

 

SOLIDITY

  • Is the underlying form being communicated?
  • Is the simmetry in perspective?

 

COLOR

  • Is there a color strategy? (remember the "keys" in your composition? E.g. color, value, temperature)
  • Could purer color be used?
  • Do the whites have enough color in them?
  • Are the colors overblended on the canvas?
  • Would the color look brighter if it were saturated into its adjacent area?

 

PAINT

  • Is your palette efficiently organized?
  • Is the painting surface too absorbent?
  • Are you using the palette knife as much as you could?
  • Are you painting lines when you should be painting masses?
  • Are the edges dynamic enough?
  • Is there enough variation in the texture of the paint?

 

Related pages

rules of composition

composition in art

learning to paint

 


 

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