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Plein-aire portability: a quick tip

If you have tried your hand at landscape painting, you may have found, as I did, that taking your wet paintings home at the end of the day without damaging them can be quite a challenge. It is very disappointing to find your carefully painted passages marked and smeared all over the rest of your… Read more »

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Colour Charts: Red + Blue = Green

Why make colour charts? There are several compelling reasons why I wanted to make my own colour charts. It all boils down to what I knew I would learn in the process: Learning to mix different colours. This sounds simple but it was one of the things I found most difficult when first starting to… Read more »

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Palette Systems

When I first wanted to start painting I wondered which colours to buy. I did some research and discovered many different palette systems. That is particular sets of colours that work together. Each system seemed to come with a particular way of thinking; an approach required to make best use of that particular set of… Read more »

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The Perfect Paper: A profile. Part 2 of 2

The search for the perfect drawing paper, part 2: As an artist you are likely to take an interest the paper you’re using. If you don’t, you should. It’s important for several reasons: Ease of use Finish desired Marks required Duration of work Scale of work Longevity The first post in this series was about… Read more »

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The Perfect Paper: A profile. Part 1 of 2

The search for the perfect drawing paper: As an artist you are likely to take an interest the paper you’re using. If you don’t, you should. It’s important for several reasons: Ease of use Finish desired Marks required Duration of work Scale of work Longevity This post is about the importance of your choice of… Read more »

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Original ochre and our Artist Ancestors

You may have read recent press coverage of the discovery in South Africa of 100,000 year old ochre based oil paint in South Africa. If you haven’t may wish to: National Geographic Article (The Original) Science Article Abstract The Art Instinct I was struck by how much we share with these early artists and just… Read more »

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What kind of Charcoal are you using?

I am often asked, “What kind of charcoal are you using?” There are a few kinds of charcoal but their qualities are suprisingly diverse. I use all of them – for different purposes. Here is a quick run down of the different types and their key characteristics: Willow charcoal Willow charcoal is a made from… Read more »