"Pounders II" 11x14" Oil on Canvas by Richard Robinson

Purchase the fine art print here >>


Painted this yesterday for the video demo for Online Workshop13 which focuses on brushwork so I was compelled with this one to use just about every brushwork technique I know to demonstrate it for the video which I'm working on now. Compare it to the plein air piece below which started to head in that direction but is texturally less interesting by comparison.


"Pounders" 10x20" Oil on Canvas by Richard Robinson

Purchase the fine art print here >>

Here's the intro text from the workshop:

One of the last things people notice about a painting is its brushwork simply because most work is seen from a distance at first and then viewed in more detail as the viewer moves closer. To me, beautiful brushwork has variety, unity, purpose and vigour. Up close it should be an interesting abstract collection of marks which resolves into a coherent scene as we retreat from the canvas.

Great brushwork comes from the confidence of knowing how brush and paint and canvas work together in the subtlest of ways and that sort of tactile knowledge only comes from years of painting. 

Here are a few tell-tales of beginner's brushwork:

Hesitant - many small brushstrokes inaccurately placed.
Overworked - brushing over areas again and again leading to muddy colour.
Destructive - brushstrokes not used well to denote the forms of objects.
Monotonous - lack of variety in mark making.

The first step towards overcoming these pitfalls is to just begin considering your brushwork in earnest. A good question to ask yourself to open your creative channels is "what would happen if..." and see where that takes you. PLAY with your paint! See what is possible - hold your brush a different way, use the side, the tip, drag, dab, push, pull, more paint, less paint, different pressure, change brushes, change speed, use a palette knife, use a toothbrush, use a chicken, scratch back, rub off, rub on, impasto, dribbles, scribbles, splatters, smooth, rough, timid, tough. Enjoy!


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