I taught a workshop yesterday on painting drapery folds and fabric. One of the exercises I had the students do was a painting of some jeans that I hung on a line in the studio. I chose the jeans as a model to illustrate the importance of capturing the gesture of the drape when painting fabric. These jeans are worn out, but hold onto the shape of the wearer even when they are hanging on the line. [Read more…]
The pastel above does not show the entire subject. The sheet of PastelMat it is painted on is pure white and highly visible in areas surrounding the image. Some areas of the painting are more detailed that others. Yet the painting is finished, I will not do anything else to it. How can that be? [Read more…]
As my students know, I am a firm believer in working with a limited palette. I have found that working with fewer colors rather than more creates a more unified look and reduces the occurrence of mud and / or a garish end result.
The palette used in this painting as well as in about 90% of my work consists of the following 8 colors:
- Prussian blue
- Ultramarine blue
- Alizarin crimson
- Cadmium red light
- Yellow ochre
- Cadmium yellow light
- Titanium white
- Burnt umber or burnt sienna
That’s it. That’s all I need, regardless of subject or medium. I have less to buy and less to carry. In the event I am painting something that has a very strong color in it, such as flowers that are magenta or glass that is turquoise blue, I can always add a stronger color, but for the most part, I am able to work with the 8 colors listed above for the majority of subjects I paint.
If you have difficulty with color mixing, or get mud or garish colors, try the above approach. The fewer the colors you work with, the more harmonious the result.
Eight is Enough: Paintings & Drawings by the Students of Anne Kullaf
Marité & Joe Robinson Strolling Gallery II
September 20, 2015 – January 17, 2016
My teaching style focuses on core concepts and encourages personal expression, creativity, and experimentation among my students. I recently challenged them to create paintings and drawings using a limited palette of only eight colors and a uniform size of 8 x 8 inches. The students represented in this exhibition were enrolled in the eight classes I taught during the Spring 2015 session—Visual Interpretation, Experimenting with Acrylics, Passion for Pastel, Paint It Your Way!, Oil Alla Prima, Fearless Drawing, Watercolor Landscape, and Art of Pastel.
By placing strategic limitations on the student artists the exhibit demonstrates that a palette of strong harmonious colors will result in a cohesive painting. Additionally, the 8 x 8 inch square format unifies the diverse range of styles and subjects presented in the exhibition. By emphasizing the importance of basic drawing and painting concepts, the work proves that an artist can say a great deal with very little.