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  • as well as showing you examples of their portfolio of work!

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Latest Video Tutorials, Guides & Lessons…

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Sketching Clouds in Charcoal: Refining the Drawing

In this series we will be drawing clouds in charcoal, using a loose, sketchy approach. You can use any reference of a cloud (or better yet, work from life!) or you can use the same one as me - it's available at this link: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/Cloud-Reference-scaled.jpg In the third and final session, we'll be smoothing things out and adding some smaller forms to create a better sense of detail. You can use pretty much any materials that you have to hand. I'm just using paper, willow charcoal, an old paintbrush and a kneadable eraser. PROCESS You will want to focus your attention on the focal point of the drawing. In my case that's the large white cloud in the centre. I want to make sure that this cloud is the most rendered aspect so that it catches the viewer's attention. I mostly use gradients (applied with a slightly harder piece of charcoal) to make the cloud's texture feel softer.Pay attention to what's dark, what's light and how soft or hard the gradient is between them. That's it! If you're working outdoors, you won't usually get more than a few hours of consistent clouds (they may change but their essential characteristics will ...
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Sketching Clouds in Charcoal: Adjusting the Forms

In this series we will be drawing clouds in charcoal, using a loose, sketchy approach. You can use any reference of a cloud (or better yet, work from life!) or you can use the same one as me - it's available at this link: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/Cloud-Reference-scaled.jpg In the second session, we'll be developing the larger, simpler cloud shapes established in the first part. You can use pretty much any materials that you have to hand. I'm just using paper, willow charcoal, an old paintbrush and a kneadable eraser. PROCESS Begin by evening out some of the messier patches of tone (where they aren't contributing to the sense of form).I paid particular attention to the sky behind the clouds as making the sky more even helps to push the clouds into the foreground. You can then begin to refine the edges of the large forms and plot the medium cloud forms within them.Pay attention to what direction the tonal gradient is shifting (where it's going from dark to light) and how gradually that is happening. You can also use some more general passes over larger areas.Particularly if you need to unify sections of dark or light ...
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Sketching Clouds in Charcoal: Getting Started

In this series we will be drawing clouds in charcoal, using a loose, sketchy approach. You can use any reference of a cloud (or better yet, work from life!) or you can use the same one as me - it's available at this link: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/Cloud-Reference-scaled.jpg This first session will be focused on getting the basic shapes and tones of the cloud down on the paper. You can use pretty much any materials that you have to hand. I'm just using paper, willow charcoal, an old paintbrush and a kneadable eraser. PROCESS Begin by quickly sketching in the basic shape of the most prominent cloud.You can use light and loose lines. Don't worry if you notice something is wrong, just correct it and keep going.Once the largest cloud is in place, you can add some of the smaller forms as well (in relation to the main cloud). Once the basic shapes have been placed, start roughly toning in the darkest areas.You can do this with the charcoal on its side to make the process quicker.At this stage you can also start brushing the patchy tones to smooth them out (this will also lighten things a bit). Keep following this process, until ...
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Fun Colour Study of a Houseplant – Final Touches

This series will show you how to create fun studies of plants in acrylics using a simple bold palette. In this lesson we will be loosely finishing the background and secondary elements as well as making some final adjustments. You can download the reference image here: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/P1090720-scaled.jpg Materials: - Acrylic paints: White, Bright Yellow, Bright Blue and Earth Red Water cups and water Palette - Paper towel Medium sized flat acrylic brush Small pointed brush This final session was dedicated to cleaning any rough edges up without adding too much detail.I wanted to make sure that the background and secondary elements are less developed than the central leaves, as this will help focus the viewers attention, and enhance the sense that the leaves are projecting out from the pot. I mixed up the darkest tone possible with red and blue and added enough water to make the paint flow quite easily.This moderately thinned dark colour was used for neatening the edges of the leaves and to add washes over the darkest sections.You can see that as this is added the overall sense of finishing increases greatly. I used a bigger brush to keep things simple. Once the background was complete, ...
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Fun Colour Study of a Houseplant – Continuing the Leaves

This series will show you how to create fun studies of plants in acrylics using a simple bold palette. In this lesson we will be following on from the previous session by continuing to add detail to individual leaves. You can download the reference image here: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/P1090720-scaled.jpg Materials: - Acrylic paints: White, Bright Yellow, Bright Blue and Earth Red Water cups and water Palette - Paper towel Medium sized flat acrylic brush Small pointed brush Keep following the same process as the previous lesson.Refine the edges where necessary by sharpening them up or softening them.Neaten the general tones within the leaves if they're patchy. Then create blendings between the darker tones and highlights.This can be achieved by working quickly so that the paint is still blendable.Or you can use gradual washes of shifting tones. Keep going until all the leaves that fill the focal point of the image are complete ...
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Fun Colour Study of a Houseplant – Adding Detail Leaf by Leaf

This series will show you how to create fun studies of plants in acrylics using a simple bold palette. In this lesson we will be adding much more detail to individual leaves in the central focal point of the painting. I will be working slowly to show how you can gradually build up complex transitions when working in acrylics. You can download the reference image here: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/P1090720-scaled.jpg Materials: - Acrylic paints: White, Bright Yellow, Bright Blue and Earth Red Water cups and water Palette - Paper towel Medium sized flat acrylic brush Small pointed brush Using a small, round brush - begin by neatening the edges of the first leaf.It may be easier to do this with more diluted paint, as that will fill the tooth or texture of the surface better. Then start laying in gradual washes of light colours that get gradually darker. You will need to mix a lot of the transitional tones as the paint will dry quickly as you work (this differs greatly from working in oils). Look for specific details like the illuminated edges of leaves and light glowing through the surfaces. It may take some time to build up very bright highlights as ...
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Fun Colour Study of a Houseplant – Neatening Edges and Shapes

This series will show you how to create fun studies of plants in acrylics using a simple bold palette. In this lesson I will show you how to neaten up your initial lay-in of colour, ready for more detailed passes. You can download the reference image here: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/P1090720-scaled.jpg Materials: - Acrylic paints: White, Bright Yellow, Bright Blue and Earth Red Water cups and water Palette - Paper towel Medium sized flat acrylic brush Small pointed brush Begin by mixing up your darkest colour (likely a blend of your earth red and blue).Mix this with a bit of water to create a slightly runny consistency - then gradually work your way around the piece, filling in any ragged white edges.You can also use this as an opportunity to alter any mistakes in the shapes of the leaves etc. Once you've completed the darkest tones, you can mix lighter greens to do the same thing within the leaves.You can also neaten up and slightly embellish the plant pot. Finally, add some highlights back into the leaves using pure white.Acrylics tend to be quite transparent so we will keep doing more of these highlight passes of the next few sessions ...
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Fun Colour Study of a Houseplant – Laying in Simple and Bold Colours

This series will show you how to create fun studies of plants in acrylics using a simple bold palette. This lesson will cover the second stage - laying in the major colours in the painting as flat shapes. You can download the reference image here: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/P1090720-scaled.jpg Materials: Your drawing from the first lessonAcrylic paints: White, Bright Yellow, Bright Blue and Earth RedWater cups and waterPalettePaper towelMedium sized flat acrylic brush Begin by mixing up a dark, neutral tone. The easiest way to do this is by adding your blue to the earth red, and keep mixing until it looks like a colour in between blue and red. This is as close to neutral as you will get. It will also be the darkest colour you can mix with this limited palette and serve as your black.Lay this dark tone into all the darkest parts of the image (referring to the reference)You may need to add a little bit of water to help the paint flow, but try to avoid making it too washy. Once you've laid in the darkest tonal masses, you can start adding patches of green for the leaves. To mix a cool green, add some yellow and ...
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Fun Colour Study of a Houseplant – Starting With a Pencil Sketch

This series will show you how to create fun studies of plants in acrylics using a simple bold palette. This lesson will cover the first stage - making a loose line drawing using pencil. You can download the reference image here: http://drawandpaint4free.artcoursework.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/P1090720-scaled.jpg Materials: Paper, canvas or panel suitable for acrylic paint Pencil Easel As this is going to be a sketchy approach - you don't need to use an eraser, but I recommend starting light with the pencil at first and only getting darker when you're more confident about the general proportions.Start with a few big, gestural shapes to approximately place the forms of the pot and leaves. Then place a few leaves at the limits of the group.The furthest left, furthest right, top etc. Then once you've got these more extreme placements, it's easy to just fill in the leaves that fill the space between.Pay attention to the particular character of each individual leaf. Some are more round, some are oblong etc. Finally, make the darker edge of the leaf forms darker (with a heavier line) - the darker edge will tend to be facing away from the light.Once you've done that, you can pop a few coats of ...
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Tips For Correcting Proportions in Your Drawings and Paintings

This short lesson will show you some techniques for making better corrections in your artworks. Proportions can be really tricky, so it's handy to have a few tricks up your sleeve when trying to figure out what's going wrong. These principles apply to both drawing and painting - whenever you're working realistically. Start by plotting a few basic points on the paper.You can use a vertical guideline (like the one above) to help get started.Pay attention to where the subject crosses this line, as well as how far to the right or left of the line it is. Use simple lines to approximately block in the main proportions of the form that you're copying.Don't worry if it's not accurate - you will just be using this as a starting point. The image on the left is my first at the foot and the one on the right is my corrected version.I primarily relied on 'horizontal and vertical alignments' to make the necessary adjustments.To do this I chose a point and imagined a horizontal or vertical line travelling out from it. Then I used that line to tell whether other points matched it's placement (were they too high or too low ...
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