Blog on Art Marketing and Selling Art

ďI didn't have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.Ē - Mark Twain

The Importance of Editing in Art

A painter shows me what he painted, but an artist shows me why she painted. [...]

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Clean color does not necessarily mean pure color straight from the tube.

Clean Color

But first, what is clean color? Clean color does not necessarily mean pure color straight from the tube. Ironically, clean color can be gray, neutral, muted, subdued, etc. Or it can be bright and pure. The colorís chroma does not determine whether it is clean or not. The Russians have beautifully sophisticated grays. Yet they are clean. How or why? In his book Alla Prima, Richard Schmid defines muddy colors as a mixture of color that is simply the wrong temperature. So, if that is true Ė and I agree with Richard - then it follows that clean color is simply a mixture in which the temperature is correct. The key to the Russian artistsí sophisticated grays is proper temperature. [...]

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Keith Bond discusses whether you should purchase or prepare your own canvas.

Should You Stretch Your Own Canvas?

I often get questions regarding whether to purchase or prepare your own canvas. The truth is there are pros and cons of each. Even still, you will save a lot of money if you learn how to prepare your own canvas. [...]

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Eric Armusik shares some tips on how he paints figurative art and portraiture.

5 Tips to Make You a Better Figurative Painter

There are many figurative painting techniques to get you to that endpoint. It isn't just one solution, but if you have more time with a painting you have more time to figure things out. Don't give up. Learn from each painting. Your mistakes will serve you well if you learn from them. [...]

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BoldBrush Sponsored Artist Vianna Szabo shares the many different ways to start a painting.

My One Rule for Starting a Painting

How do you choose what is easiest? The most important decisions are made before the brush touches the canvas. First, I consider the time. When I am plein air painting I know that the light will change quickly on so my focus goes to getting the correct color notes of the light with very little drawing... [...]

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Keith Bond discusses the completing a plein air painting outdoors vs indoors

The Two Plein Air Artists

When painting on your own, the only rule is to do what works best for you to achieve your vision. Be it completing the work on location; finishing it in the studio; or using the study to inspire a new, larger studio work. But again, the questions. Should there be a standard at an organized event? What should that standard be? Where do you stand on the issue? Or does it not even matter? [...]

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Carolyn Anderson shares some advice on 'edges' for your paintings

Do Your Paintings Look Stiff?

If your paintings look stiff, if your figures donít turn, and objects appear flat and look like paper cut-outs, then perhaps you need to reevaluate how you see, not just how you apply paint. [...]

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Keith Bond discusses the advantages and disadvantages of the "Sight-size Method"

Pros and (Mostly) Cons of Sight-size Method

The problem with sight-size is that if you have become dependent upon it, you may not have the confidence (or worse yet, the ability) to accurately draw something that isnít exactly as you see it. You become dependent upon copying. Creativity suffers. Works become technical craft and less about feeling, mood, and expression. [...]

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Tracy Ference shares why people still want a painted portrait

Why Portraiture?

There is something about the human experience that is revealed within a portrait and people feel drawn to that elusive thing that makes a painting so much more than a photo. [...]

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Keith Bond discusses keeping values simple and linking shapes into a larger abstract shape for a stronger composition

Shape Welding

So, the lesson for today is to see the values in your subject. Organize them into 3 to 5 values. And weld like value shapes together to create fewer shapes. Yet, within each shape, you can have all the color, texture, detail, interest that you want. Just donít lose the integrity of each shape Ė which lies in its value. [...]

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Keith Bond shares some tips on how to keep your palette organized

An Organized Palette Leads to Intuitive Color Mixing

Mixing through intuition doesnít mean that I resort to formulas, either. It merely means that I know by heart where the needed color is on the palette. There are many challenges to painting. Searching for the colors, because they arenít organized, simply adds unnecessarily to the challenges. [...]

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Kim VanDerHoek shares some valuable tips, when you don't know what to do next in your painting

What To Do When You Donít Know What To Do Next - In Your Painting

There comes a point in every painting when you donít know what to do next. You feel your painting isnít finished, not by a long shot, but, you donít know exactly what it needs in order for it to be complete. The answer is often within the painting itself and if you listen carefully it will tell you what it needs. [...]

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Keith Bond discusses the advantages of pushing yourself out of your comfort zone

Donít Just Play it Safe

The purist in me says that you should always paint what inspires you most, even if that includes pushing yourself and tackling something more difficult. But the realist in me recognizes that it is very difficult to do that when you feel the pressure to perform. ĎSafeí looks very tempting. [...]

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Eric Rhoads shares how breaking things up into smaller steps can make a world of difference

The Pathways to Excellence

Giving it a shot is an important starting point, but it isnít enough. Iíve met too many people who tried painting or drawing and quit because they got discouraged too easily. [...]

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Eric Rhoads shares how giving can impact you in a positive way

Unexpected Impact

Giving fuels growth. Itís something I never understood, but when you give, much is given back to you, which of course allows you to give more. Giving can be about time, about encouragement, about advice, about listening, or, yes, about money. [...]

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Keith Bond discusses the pros and cons of painting large on location.

Painting Large en Plein Air

So I am completely satisfied working both plein air and in the studio. They serve different purposes. I can say and do different things. Yet, they are interdependent. Each discipline leads to learning and growth in the other. [...]

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Keith Bond discusses spontaneity and freshness in a plein air painting and how to capture that in your studio.

There Must Be Another Reason

My plein air work is about responding emotionally to the moment. But, I have realized that my studio work enables me to explore other ideas, push compositional choices, or push color to create a mood. [...]

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Eric Armusik discusses self-taught stigmas and shares 5 valuable tips

Banishing The Self-Taught Artist Stigma (+5 Tips)

A self-taught artist is a professional artist if they take their work and craft seriously. Never ever give up. You are greater than you know. [...]

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Don't miss S.C. Mummert's continued discussion on camera's and their optical distortion.

The One-Eyed Liar (Part 2)

Last time, we examined the cameraís tendency to compress values and alter colors. This month weíll explore its penchant for optical distortion. [...]

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Don't miss S.C. Mummert's discussion on an important tool in an artist's toolbox

The One Eyed Liar

For me, the cameraís a tool, thatís it Ö just one tool in a rather large artistic toolbox. Yes, a powerful tool, to be sure; but one that should be used with care, and an eye on its limits. It does have them. [...]

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Lori Woodward demonstrates the difference light vs shadows can make when painting tree foliage

Painting Tree Foliage: Light and Shadow

Without light, we just can't see much - no shape, no color. There is less light in the shadow, so we see fewer detail and color in those shadows. [...]

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Lori Woodward demonstrates how warm light makes cooler shadows, using paintings by Michael Godfrey & Lisa Mitchell

Warm Light Makes Cooler Shadows

Before I studied with Richard Schmid, I understood how to use color and value in my landscapes, but in a less scientific way than I do now. I knew that shadows are darker than the sunlit objects, and I even knew that the reflected light in the shadows was always darker than anything in the light. [...]

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Lori Woodward discusses how to charter your own art career.

Charting Your Artistic Course

Like it or not, if your work can be recognized as "Your Work", you'll have an easier time attracting an audience for it. [...]

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Lori Woodward shares the value of always being a student...

Adding Value to Your Artwork

Never settle... as soon as you think you've learned everything there is to know about making fine art, your work is in trouble. [...]

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William Schneider discusses the advantages of perfecting one skill at a time.

The Perpetual Student

A great idea is to copy masterworks. Sargent did; Zorn did. In fact virtually all the great artists have done this type of research. The goal is to figure out the master artistsí thought process. [...]

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Pioneer Cooking by JR Monks

The Devil Is In The Details

The devil may be in the details, but the painter is in the ability to make decisions regarding what to emphasize, and what to downplay. [...]

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A Day in the Studio with Zac Elletson

Setting up and painting a still life from start to finish. [...]

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How to Paint Anything!

This video is an introduction into understanding the fundamentals of painting and drawing from life. [...]

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How Sketches Improve Your Landscapes

It's not uncommon for me to paint parts of the same scene several times before settling on a final composition for a larger work. [...]

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The Fine Art of Discovery

Painting with no map, I lost my preoccupation with where I was going, and I had to just look around and pay attention to where I was in the painting at every moment. It's terrifying, but also completely exciting to discover a new way of painting after 20 years. [...]

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Using A Limited Palette -- Part 2

Although I use a limited palette for my paintings, I always start out by mixing puddles of several colors before I start the actual painting. [...]

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Keeping It Simple-- Using A Limited Palette

There are certainly countless artists out there who use extensive palettes and get beautiful results, and my selection of pigments is just one way to approach painting. But if you have never used a limited palette, give this a try- you might be surprised with the results and be able to bypass all those rows of paint in the art store next time. [...]

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Be Involved in the Creative Process from the Start - Use Your Own References

Don't let a reference dictate what your finished painting looks like. Remember your painting is your voice - let it sing out loud and clear. [...]

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Subject Matters

Donít strive to become a portrait artist; instead strive to become a better artist. If you want to paint better portraits, learn to paint landscape. [...]

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Why Painting From Life Matters - Even If You Don't Enjoy It.

In order to love what I paint, I must paint what I love, and get to know my subject personally. [...]

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Painting in Monochrome

One of the best ways to become comfortable with painting in oil, watercolor, and acrylic is to use two colors and work monochromatically. [...]

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Texture In Your Art

Texture, implied or not, can create emotions, share messages, or simply add spice to your painting. [...]

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Don't Forget Your Paints!

Adventures always open our minds and our hearts, not to mention, how they inspire our souls. [...]

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The Advantages of Selling Two Bodies of Work

There is no one method or recipe for selling your artwork. Choose and experiment with a venue that fits with your personality, time constraints, and style of work. [...]

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What Color Is That?

What color is that? The question floats through the room at every demo or workshop. [...]

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