Monday, October 3, 2011

Wanna know how to loosen up your paintings?

When I'm traveling around to art shows, I meet a lot of people, many who are artists themselves. One of the questions I get over and over goes something like this:  "I paint tight and detailed and can't seem to loosen up. How do you do it?"

The actual answer for me is that it's just how I paint. In fact, when I have to paint tight and detailed I feel like someone is strangling me. And I hate when that happens. So here's 4 approaches that will help you to loosen up when you paint. Try one or more and let me know if it helps!

  1. use a large brush or palette knife (emphasis on LARGE)
  2. paint using your non-dominant hand
  3. have a drink (or do something to take the edge off :) After all, it's paint and canvas. There'll likely be many others so don't worry so much. The painting police won't arrest you if you mess it up.
  4. stop at 90%. This tip is actually something that my colleague Bob Burridge recommends, so I can't take credit for this one. Bob also teaches some wonderful workshops to help you loosen up (click the link for more info).

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