Winter scene of a River and Cabin

As you can tell by now I love water, I love painting cabins and landscapes with stormy skies. They are my absolute favourite things to paint. The reference picture I loosely based this one on is from pixabay.com.

(First layers of colour)

I loved the colours in this particular painting are very calming. My favourite combinations to use at the moment are yellow ochre, blue and greens. Again I decided to put a stormy sky in there as well.

(Determining the composition of the painting)

Here I am starting to add more layers and details into the painting. Figuring out where points of interest are going to be is probably the hardest part of painting. Once you know where all the objects sit you can start adding shadows and highlights and details to the painting. By adding details such as highlights and shadows this gives the painting depth and interest. The reflections on the water really make it seem as though it’s real.

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Xxx

River through the mountains

Here is my first ever painting done with a palette knife. A river running through the mountains to the ocean.

I love the flow and peace that this painting seems to give. Although the river is clearly forcing its way to the ocean, the flow of water makes me feel calm and relaxed. This is the first piece of a series of paintings featuring rivers, the ocean and mountains. I’m surrounded by mountains here where I live so it’s not hard to find plenty of inspiration.

The first stage of this painting. I blocked in the background colours with a fat brush. I very much limited the amount of colours I used for this painting. I wanted to challenge myself to create a piece with depth using limited tools. I had 1 brush and one palette knife, red, blue, yellow, black and white. My favourite kinds of skies to create are definitely stormy skies. I like my paintings to have lots of drama in them. The acrylic paint I have used is Daler Rowney System 3 acrylic paint.

Next week I’ll be publishing another river painting I have created this year. To keep up to date with my current work please pop over to my social media pages.

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Paper or Canvas – that is the question! 

I often get asked is Canvas or Paper better to paint/draw on. The answer is simple…….. it depends on what you want to draw or paint! There are so many options and there are so many things you need to consider. I’m going to show you what I use and how I use it to help you make a good decision for yourself.

Sketching/Drawing

For practice drawing and sketching you want to have a smooth paper. So a hot pressed paper that isn’t too thick. Anything up to 120gsm is pretty good. The thickness of the paper will still give you a quality feel to your sketch and the hot press will give you a smooth finish. The smoother the paper, the cleaner your lines will be which will give you a more realistic look.

My current art journal is less than 100gsm and is not suitable for anything other than sketching. Below is a picture of an Orca that I drew in my journal. If you try to use other medias (paint or watercolour) on this type of paper it will wrinkle and curl. It damages the paper and if you do that, there’s no saving it.

Mixed Media Paper 250 gsm +

The below sketch is a graphite on 250gsm mixed media paper. This paper is meant to handle Acrylic paint well, but water colour is a bit of a stretch. I love it to print my art work on to this paper because it has a bit of texture just like a canvas and it gives the print a really good quality look and feel.


The above picture is a print of my original Acrylic painting printed on to 250gsm paper.

Cold Pressed Cotton Paper

A cold press paper is rough, it has what is called ‘tooth’. It is ideal if you like that bumpy, textured feel and look to your painting. I personally don’t like to draw on this type of paper. I love to paint on it! I use a 300gsm cold press cotton paper with my acrylics. You get a matte finish with the textured finish of a canvas. The cotton paper is actually made for water colour paint because it can handle the wet application without creasing and folding. I use watercolours and acrylic on it and it performs beautifully.

Stretched Canvas

There are several types of canvas you can get. The main types are stretched canvas, canvas board and canvas paper or sheets. I prefer to use a stretched canvas. I like the bounce back it gives you. All types of canvas have a tooth (bumpy texture) that I love! With the stretched canvas’s you don’t have to frame and can hang as is.

Above is an acrylic Painting is on a stretched canvas of Saundersfoot Beach. This is my favourite material to paint on.

Canvas Board

For my original painting of my Light house I did it on a canvas board. As you can see from the below picture that it performs much like a stretched canvas. It has a tooth, although not as deep. It is an easy and cheaper way to start painting. They come in all sorts of sizes and packs. You can frame them easily too.

I hope you liked my tips for how to choose the right material to paint or draw on. Come back next week for more!

Cheers,
Chrissy xxx