Fine Artist Eric Bossik
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Florida Art Classes

   Oil Painting Techniques
Oil Painting Techniques I:
Developing the underpainting.

Drawing and Composition: 
I begin oil paintings by drawing and composing
the subject. You can draw the subject directly onto the canvas using pencil, charcoal, pen and ink or oil paint. Or you can transfer a drawing you composed on paper.

Developing Planes:

It's important to define the planes, which connect the different forms that comprise the subject of your painting. Find the large planes first. Then work your way down to the smaller plains. Once you find the top planes, front planes, side planes, and bottom planes, you'll start to understand the dimensionality of the subject.

Pet Portrait of a King Charles Spaniel
Dry brush underpainting with raw umber
Finished painting
Oil on canvas

Oil Painting Techniques II: Creating a value study and color study.

Value Study:

Value study and Color Study
Value Study           Color Study

Create a simple study, a rough painting that is used to work out the main values, which are shades of light and dark. The study should use neutral grays, which are cool and warm gray paints that are mixed together to create a neutral color temperature. You can work out the values for any painting with a simple value study that ’s no larger than a postage stamp (also known as the poster). Once you work out the values, you'll be ready to develop the colors.

Color Study:

A color study can easily be created now that you've completed your value study. All the colors in the color study should match the values in your value study. The red color in the shadow of a dog’s ear should be the same value as the shadow in the ear from your neutral gray study. The intensity (chroma) of the colors will depend on the objects in your painting and the relationship of all the elements in your painting.


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