What you will learn here is strictly a method for learning how to paint realism in oil. The method will teach you how to draw in proportion, how to mix natural color, and how to paint realism as you see it. After you're comfortable with the method and have painted a few paintings using it, you can leave the method behind and develop your own way of doing things.“Yellow Flowers” by Mark Carder oil on linen, 28″×16″ (71.1cm × 40.6cm)
Supplies You Will Need
Click here for the course supply list. Please note that if you are working from photos, you will not need a color checker.
Setting Up Your Studio
In addition to having your supplies ready, it is also important to have your studio space ready as well. Watch this video which explains how to set up an artists' studio.
The most important part about setting up your studio is that there should be no light coming from directly behind you as you paint facing your canvas. This is where all the glare on your painting will come from. If there is a white wall behind you that has light on it or a window behind you or an open door to a bright room behind you, it will create glare on your painting.
The simplest way to keep this area dark is to hang some dark fabric behind you. You could even use a thin cable or rope to hang the fabric from so you can pull it out of the way when you're not painting.
If you are in need of a good artists' easel and don't want to buy one, here is a video where I show you how to make a really nice one for very little money:
If you need a brush holder, in this video I show you how to make one at almost no cost:
Thinning Down Your Paint with Artists' Medium
If you are using Geneva Artists' Oil Color, skip this step as it already has medium in it.
If you are not using Geneva paint, you will need to thin your oil tube paint down with medium before using it. Medium is a liquid artists use to make oil paint more workable and easier to paint with. Click here for the medium recipes. The medium not only gives your paint nice handling properties, but also greatly slows down the drying rate of your paint. This is really important if you want your prepared palette to remain wet and usable for a week instead of just 24 hours.
Here is a video where I explain how to thin down your tube paint properly. Make note in the video that of the five colors you will use, burnt umber and titanium white are mixed a little differently than the other three.
Click the NEXT STEP button to move on to STEP 2, "Choosing Your Subject".next step →