A&P Where can I learn painting knife techniques?

Discussion in 'Lifestyle' started by JosephRawr, Oct 29, 2009.

  1. JosephRawr

    JosephRawr New Member

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    I have no experience with painting except for that one time in kindergarten when I did some awesome hand paintings.

    I would really love to learn how to use the painting knife, it is my favourite style of painting that I have seen and i'd love to learn how to pain like that one day.

    I would love to only learn the painting knife tool, is it required that I learn the "basics" of painting with brushes and such?

    Thanks for helping me out on this one.
     
  2. Drunken Karnie Midget

    Drunken Karnie Midget In Yeo We Trust, All Others Pay Cash OT Supporter

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    Old episodes of Bob Ross.

    Or google/youtube him. i'm sure there's vids online somewhere.
     
  3. Asherman

    Asherman New Member

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    Painting is something anyone can do. The trick is to create good paintings, and that isn't easy even for experienced painters. An amateur might, against all odds, create a wonderful painting, but it will be an accident. The serious painter works at it every day, and over time will turn out competent paintings consistently. Each painting should represent an improvement over its predecessors as the painter learns and gains experience.

    Learning the fundamentals greatly increases the chance that your paintings will represent your vision properly. Knowing the capability and limitations of your media is important. The support and ground used might work for one painting, but not for others.

    Pigments can be used directly from the tube, but that is expensive and those paintings are very vulnerable to cracking. Beginning painters often use turpentine, or one of the variants on the old standard, but turpentine will result in dull, lifeless color. That's OK, if your conception calls for a very, very muted picture.

    There are many other mediums a painter can choose from for special purposes and effects, but the most common is linseed oil. Linseed oil is very versatile and has been used for centuries. For transparent film layers of pigment, use a lot of linseed oil. Thin makes for detail. Less oil, more opacity. Thick tends to make for surface texture, but at the sacrifice of detail. One painting might require six or more layers of paint to produce a complex rich picture, while another might be made of only a few layers of thicker paint. Palette knives are generally used only with thick pigments.

    Painting is built on a foundation of knowing and understanding color and color combination. There are several color theories, and there are major overlaps between theories. A serious painter chooses the theoretical that best suits a particular vision, and that might change from one painting to another. If you don't know much about color, its likely that your paintings will resemble a mud puddle. Some colors work together to produce marvelous effects, while others resist being bent to the painter's will. Black is often used by tyros, but since the Impressionists most serious painters seldom use it. Better results can be obtained by mixing other intense, dense colors. The way white (and which white) is used alters the intensity of pigments, and is an essential for the serious painter.

    Composition, or the way you arrange picture elements within the painting, can make or break a painting. Balance, symmetry, positive and negative space all play a part. The painter uses line (even when no line is clearly visible) to move the viewer's eye unconsciously about the picture. How does an audience view a picture anyway? Well, that's largely a matter of cultural conditioning. In the West, we typically read right to left, and down, so a "Z" pattern is unconsciously followed by most people. In the East, its traditionally top to bottom and right to left following Chinese calligraphy methods. The Golden Section developed by the ancient Greeks can be found even in pictures produced by painters who aren't even aware they were using that "rule".

    I know it sounds complicated, but really isn't all that difficult. You don't need a university degree to be a good painter. It aint rocket science, but ignorance of the fundamentals will put the painter at the mercy of accident... and more accidents lead to bad, bad paintings than paintings that truly represent the painter's intent. Read some books that focus on the fundamentals of painting, color and composition if you can't find a working painter who will take you in for a bit of technical training. You will notice I said "technical training". There is always a danger that the student painter will adopt the vision of his/her teacher, and that can end up stifling the creative wells from which really good painting flow.

    Developing acute vision and learning to see truely and deeply the world around us is the single most important thing if you want to paint. Be conscious of what you are seeing, and see as much as possible. Spend real time studying the paintings in your local art museum, in galleries, and in the homes you visit. Think about them. Why does one work, while another doesn't? What details are lurking behind that dark mass that when seen at a glance appears uniform? Why did the painter choose one surface treatment over others? Spend time studying those fine prints in the coffee table art book you got for Christmas last year. Go out into the world, and observe how light and shadow define space. Draw and sketch images to experiment with composition, line and space while improving your hand-eye coordination. Work at improving your aesthetic vision every day, and think about it in between.
     
  4. Tonster MBA

    Tonster MBA OT'r of the Year 2013 OT Supporter

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    Dang, i was going to say the same thing, but he beat me to it.
     
  5. ace3

    ace3 mouthify my wang.

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    :repost:
     
  6. JosephRawr

    JosephRawr New Member

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    Thank you so much!
     

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