A few days ago I was painting and I started to feel like all of my characters were looking too painted on. You know, like the girl looked like I’d cut her out and pasted her on top of an abstract background. There didn’t seem to be any freedom or flow. Everything looked rigid and tight.
Do you ever find it difficult to try something new in your paintings? I do (a lot).
But I knew it was time to mix up my supplies. If I don’t take that risk and just go for it, I usually never like what I create.
The first thing I did was mix acrylic inks and acrylic paints together to get unusual and unexpected color combinations. I then repeated my favorite combinations throughout the rest of my painting collection. If it still didn’t feel right, I added more layers until everything started to come together.
Here’s 4 of My Favorite Ways to Create Luscious Layers:
- Don’t just rely on one supply. Instead, when you feel like something is missing, layer 2-3 of your favorite supplies.
- Add dots, then smudge them out. I love adding dots with paint pen or acrylic inks, then, when the color is still wet, I press my thumb or palm on top to make the dots less prominent. To get even more variation, I’ll smudge the remaining color from my hand onto the rest of the painting (all super random and playful which often leads to beautiful mistakes and new ideas).
- Scribble a rainbow of water soluble oil pastels, then add white acrylic paint or ink over a few parts to bleed out the color. Spin your painting around to make the color drip for even more fun.
- Drip Prussian blue and fluorescent pink acrylic ink. Then squirt cadmium yellow ink on top (straight from the bottle). It’s super fun to splatter these colors together too.
Whenever I mix up my supplies, it pushes me to find new ways to paint and reminds me there’s no right or wrong. It’s so often the things I don’t plan in my paintings, that reveal the most beauty.
Many of you have been asking when I’ll reopen registration on Whimsical Animals, so I thought I’d make this course available to you as a self-paced, online course (it’s perfect for the new year). Click HERE to learn more about Whimsical Animals class.
In this video sneak peek you’ll see how I cover up the white space with lots of layers, adding my favorite supplies, then find my character, using simple shapes.
I hope that all helps to keep you inspired!