Monday, August 25, 2014


When on location, I often tell my students to keep it simple.  But that bit of advice can go right over the heads of a person who is bombarded with so much information.  The temptation is always to include as many details as possible.  So the advice to Keep It Simple, Stupid (KISS)  remains a mere slogan rather than a practical solution.

So, how does a painter keep it simple? 

1.  Squint at your subject.  This will help you see shapes more easily.  While squinting, concentrate on identifying shapes:  rectangles, triangles, cones, silhouettes.

2.  Also while squinting, your eyes will filter out the little details that some students feel so obligated to include.  windows, doors, shutters, shingles, lattice work, etc.  Those can be added later when the major shapes are solidified.

3.  Also while squinting, find the three major values:  lights, darks and midtones.  That will be helpful in deciding what to paint first.

4.  Finally, avoid trying to duplicate the actual colors in front of you.  Decide on two or three colors and the grays that they create when combined.  Simplified!

And since I'm simplifying my advice, I'll stop there! 

No comments:

Post a Comment