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Discussion Starter #1
So this thread is about the process you went through as you created your work of art.

You are encouraged to post images of the process or write about what they were like or how you felt...or if you'd like you can also post articles about other artists processes.

It can be sort of a journal area to talk about your experience and to try to process the process you are going through to create your work!
 

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Discussion Starter #2
So I had been researching how to find references for painting. I'm trying to learn how to oil paint and sort of teach myself.

I knew that I liked this reference image and I thought it was a bit advanced, but I still really liked it so I just chose it. I found it on a site that explicitly gives permission for people to paint or draw the image with traditional media.

So...I decided to make an underpainting of permanent carmine and a mix of terpenoid and a tiny bit of some other painting medium.

I liked it, even if it's not really descriptive enough. I've come to realize that I really need to focus on being more descriptive because I'm not making a pencil under-drawing and so I really need to work the proportions out better. I was happy with this underpainting sketch, but I realized later how it wasn't as helpful as I thought it would be.

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When I look at it now I still feel like it works, but it isn't the right frame for the detail, and when the detail was put in more it didn't work!

So I think on my next try I need to try to make the under-painting more descriptive--that means messy lines and all that stuff that helps me to see proportions. Not just marking in values.

But the good thing about this underpainting is that it's very thin with terpenoid mix, and so it follows the fat over lean rule, so I should be able to cover over it. Though unfortunately I really needed to make a better under-painting for description.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So then I thought I should try to put in white again to re-establish value.

I used white from the tube and I am not sure if this is where I messed up? I am also nervous because I don't know how long it takes for white to dry, so I don't know if it is actually a part of the underpainting.

I think perhaps I shouldn't have used white, but I thought I remembered somewhere to put white in to re-establish the lighter values.

So I put it in, but then I liked it, but then I looked at it in the mirror and I didn't like it at all!

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So I am also not sure if I just didn't like the painting which is the problem, but I decided that the proportions were all wrong and In just dug into it.

I think that this is one of the nicer stages though, but it was supposed to be the underpainting (maybe I should just make a pencil drawing instead). But then I decided to just try to aggressively change proportions after it already was starting to be developed--but that comes next. I'm just wondering if it's still considered an "underpainting" if I've used so much paint. But it's still just as fat as plain tube paint, so I think I should be able to add more layers especially if they are mixed with more oil or "fat."

So this is it now:

I messed with it and I'm not a fan of this stage. I think if I'd only used the thin painting to be more descriptive then it'd been a lot better. So next time I want to really be messy with that and get it completely slapped down right.

But this is what I have to work with--I'm sort of happier with the composition and proportions but I also feel like I just did a lot of correcting in a stage I shouldn't have been correcting--I should have corrected or defined at first. Now it just looks weird.

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I'm hoping that with the white it will still be okay as an underpainting. I am planning to work on it again tomorrow, but it could be that I shouldn't have added so much white.

But it's probably still useful to try to learn how to paint value with just two pigments, so that is silver lining.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Maybe I should do a pencil drawing next time--but I was hoping I could just sketch it with paint. Maybe it's a bit too advanced now--or I need to practice sketching with paint more. I think that would be it--I don't like sketching with pencil and then switching. I'd rather have the paint be my sketching medium.

Also, I noticed the permanent Carmine almost looked "darker" mixed with white, and I think the titanium white made it cooler, which is why. Because it was a little purple with the white whereas on its own it's a much more vibrant pink/red.

I plan to come in with some kind of blue and maybe a yellow to continue with my "underpainting." Now there's a thought--why not have underpaintings of all three primary colours--that way I could postpone the serious business as long as possible. That sounds like a great idea!
 

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i think the second phase is better defined than 3rd, imo
mostly because the drawing is nice and clear and there's enough info for the volume
painting big heads is hard cuz proportions can be easily off, it's not your case, i'm not a fan of the type of portrait tho
the result is still good, if you are really a total begginer you will totally master the technique in max 2 years imo, just don't stop painting!
i also paint sometimes when i'm not lazy about it lol but i only use acrylics

if you want to learn oil painting, you should definitely check nicolas uribe youtube channel our painted lives, it's a total must for anyone who's taking art seriously
 

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Discussion Starter #6
i think the second phase is better defined than 3rd, imo
mostly because the drawing is nice and clear and there's enough info for the volume
painting big heads is hard cuz proportions can be easily off, it's not your case, i'm not a fan of the type of portrait tho
the result is still good, if you are really a total begginer you will totally master the technique in max 2 years imo, just don't stop painting!
i also paint sometimes when i'm not lazy about it lol but i only use acrylics

if you want to learn oil painting, you should definitely check nicolas uribe youtube channel our painted lives, it's a total must for anyone who's taking art seriously
I think the second phase was too. I think that's what it was supposed to be like (or else maybe I shouldn't even add white first to the terpenoid underpainting as second phase). But third phase was basically realizing I hadn't done proportions right in first phase, and so trying to correct that after painting all that detail (and so...I think I just needed to sketch in proportions better in the first place).

It's not even a big head though--the painting's only like 8 x 12 inches. but I guess the face is bigger than normal.

I'm trying not to stop painting. Was trying to do "a painting a day" but now I'm just going to keep trying to find ways to paint everyday no matter if I'm tired or irritated or anything.

Wow--I haven't seen nicolas urbibe--but I just looked him up and will definitely check him out. Now I need a break because I'm sort of irritated at the painting. So I'm also trying to fill in time with research like watching those videos rather than putting it out of my mind.

I also had a dream last night about making a painting so that's good imo--my subconscious is on board and so hopefully I can't as easily just stop and not do anything, which is something I've done in my life with art for long periods of time.

Thanks for the suggestions and feedback!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Here's next time I worked on it:

 

I thought the face was going to be so much easier than the hair, but by the time I was done with face I was sort of impatient with having to worry about details in hair so it was hasty.

I also wasn't sure about whether you're supposed to paint on tacky, un-dry other paint, but figured whatever. It's been a couple days and that wasn't supposed to be a true layer but an underpainting.

So I mixed lamp black with prussian blue to make the black and put it in around the painting in what I thought would be the darkest parts.

Then I started trying to work on the skin. It was looking grey and because the underpainting is so bright red, I think it ended looking incredibly green and grey and I was unsure it would ever look anything like skin.

This might be white bright red underpainting isn't the greatest ideas. The red against the skin, I couldn't tell whether the skin would look green or what.

Then I remembered I'd forgotten to do the background color, as I didn't know what it'd be. But I chose a mix of ultramarine, white, and some prussian blue.

Then I added some white to the brighter parts of hair, and I added yellow...cadmium yellow light I think. And I also used scarlet lake red because when I did watercolors, that blended well for flesh tones (but I mostly used it in the hair.

I got tired of how sticky the brush is so I added an additive to it--it's not supposed to be super fat but I was just kind of impatient. So some of the layer is straight from the tube and some is with the "solvent free fluid" by gambling.



I'm feeling sick of it right now but will probably come back to fix the lips (I did use more of the underpainting color 'permanent carmine" on them again.

But I think I'm done with this stage. It was a bit chaotic. I just left some of the underpainting since idk what else to do. I guess I could come back and try to do more detail and fix the neck.

I'm happy with it for now. And also getting that part done--it's not even 11 am!

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I'm not really into painting so I can't give you any advice or anything but I think the last image is cool. It seems finished to me, what are you gonna do next?
Personally, I'm principally making music. I usually find ideas by playing around with my guitar. When a good idea strikes me I'll generally have a sort vision of where I want it to go and will write the other parts of the song. Then comes the hardest part, the arrangements (writing other instruments). Most of the time you think of something that could fit with the other instruments but when you record it's not quite that, it either clashes with the other parts, doesn't fit rhythmically, sonically, or isn't interesting enough... So I usually edit things to death to find the right thing. I write everything myself. I'd like to have bandmates that I REALLY get along with but I've never had that chance. It's frustrating sometimes because it's a lot of work to finish one song, but on the other hand I can pursue my artistic vision and am the only one to blame if what I do isn't good enough, which is appealing to me.
 

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painting is really good, nvm my size thing, i was in parrot mode, heard about big heads painting the other day and had to spit it out somehow xD
i try everything i can, from photocollages to composing rock music, to painting, drawing, etc.
for art i just drew whatever image catches my attention, i scanned and painted over in photoshop. the other one is a canvas like 50x65 or smth i can't remember tbh

atm i'm doing karaoke all the time, cuz it feels less like an extra job.
music: i'm not inspired atm to record stuff but i had a couple of hits back then haha. not really. some argentinian station played one of my songs at their rock show, i'm not even argentinian nor do i live there lol so i was kinda shocked.
XD or embarrased.
anyways, last song i wrote (was just an idea tbf):

https://soundcloud.com/user-883081138%2Feuropa-sibarita-1984
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I feel like morning time is the most productive time for me--I'm not sure why. It's like I'm prioritizing painting though--I find it seems much more likely I get something done if I start in the morning than not.

I've read that evenings can be "creative" times, but I find in the evening I'm being so unstructured that I wouldn't even start a creative work.

I suppose that I could take a two-pronged approach and wake up early to prioritize as well as later in the evening give myself permission to also be creative.

I did do some sketches of a riot when it first broke out in MN from a video I saw--so that flexibility might have been more due to being late at night. I also had a dream about painting, so again could point to creativity at night.

I just feel a lot more confident when I have something decided for the morning to actually do. But ultimately I am only going to create what I do--regardless of what time it is or what mental state I'm in, so I should probably seek to create at any time.

Still, planning out ahead of time helps me to ensure I start working in the morning and accomplish something by noon.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
painting is really good, nvm my size thing, i was in parrot mode, heard about big heads painting the other day and had to spit it out somehow xD
i try everything i can, from photocollages to composing rock music, to painting, drawing, etc.
for art i just drew whatever image catches my attention, i scanned and painted over in photoshop. the other one is a canvas like 50x65 or smth i can't remember tbh

View attachment 865710 View attachment 865711

atm i'm doing karaoke all the time, cuz it feels less like an extra job.
music: i'm not inspired atm to record stuff but i had a couple of hits back then haha. not really. some argentinian station played one of my songs at their rock show, i'm not even argentinian nor do i live there lol so i was kinda shocked.
XD or embarrased.
anyways, last song i wrote (was just an idea tbf):

https://soundcloud.com/user-883081138%2Feuropa-sibarita-1984
Thanks for sharing.

Did you perform the song as well as write it? I don't know anything about music and cannot play an instrument, sing, or write songs (that I know of).

It sounds good. Do you write the karaoke?

I also like the art--the one with the cup reminded me of how I used to feel getting up at seven am and being dead without coffee (which somehow also felt like another type of death).
 

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Thanks for sharing.

Did you perform the song as well as write it? I don't know anything about music and cannot play an instrument, sing, or write songs (that I know of).

It sounds good. Do you write the karaoke?

I also like the art--the one with the cup reminded me of how I used to feel getting up at seven am and being dead without coffee (which somehow also felt like another type of death).
cool that u like the art
yeah, i performed guitar and keys in that song, the drums i wrote in computer.
for karaoke i download instrumentals from youtube, cba to record them.
i have developed some range for singing, my voice is relatively confortable from G2 to A4-E5.

are you already painting another canvas?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
cool that u like the art
yeah, i performed guitar and keys in that song, the drums i wrote in computer.
for karaoke i download instrumentals from youtube, cba to record them.
i have developed some range for singing, my voice is relatively confortable from G2 to A4-E5.

are you already painting another canvas?
That's cool you can create music--and karaoke is such an experience for the people who use it. I was watching some people singing karaoke and it was such a special experience to them and it was also cool for others to watch.

I did start to work on another underpainting and I also gesso'd a bunch of canvasses.

It's been really hot here so I think it's a great time to do the gesso since it can be really foggy too. But now it's hot and windy so dries easily. I also tried to shrink some cheap store bought canvas that had become loose, and it worked--just sprayed them with water and let them dry.

I'm not stretching my own canvas--I missed that part of the education, but I do enjoy the security of having something to do when I'm not sure what to do artistically--so painting gesso was a nice thing to get done yesterday--plus I figure it's easier to get done now then later.

But I started underpainting (spellcheck changed it to underpinning--hopefully there are not more problems in the post like that) an awkward pose of a horse. It's actually just from a reference photo of a horse rolling in the dirt out of its own volition, but I thought it looked like the horse was "getting up" in some emotional way. My dad saw it and asked if the horse was shot--so I guess he saw it more like a lame horse.

If I could do it over, I would try to at least paint out the basics of the horse's skeleton. I think I did better with the underpainting this time, but with these figurative paintings, it'd probably be better if I actually draw the anatomy out instead of just messing with the light and dark. But I am glad about messing with the underpainting more--I used terpenoid to scrub away areas of the painting similar to how I would use charcoal for a drawing, so I ended up feeling really confident and happy about learning to push the under painting more.

1st underpainting similar to last one:
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And I still want to make more changes, but I feel better about the underpainting than I did last time.
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Discussion Starter #16
I might move this to the blog section since it's starting to seem more like my personal blog.

I can't believe it's been like 11 days since I've tried again.

I did draw a portrait of a blm protester that I saw on my newsfeed on facebook. I drew it on the canvas, and I found that is easy to do at night.

So if I'm looking to utilize the night hours with oil painting, I think drawing the painting can be useful for that time since it doesn't require a lot of ventilation or cleanup.

So it's not like I've done nothing, but it's still surprising to me that it's already been 11 days and not one of those days did I not think about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
But today I did another approach.

I went outside where the ventilation was better, with the intention of painting.

I decided to do a color study since there's so much I don't know about oil colors and how they mix.

So I took stuff outside and mixed paint. I mixed Permanent Rose, Blue Manganese Hue, and Naples Yellow. I basically just grabbed them randomly, though I did choose Naples Yellow (which is a softer yellow) to Cadmium.

Then I also chose Titanium White. (Actually that's my only strong white so w/e.)

When I was studying watercolor I did a ton of color mixing sheets and I wished I could do that, but I realized I have disposable paper palettes and so I can just save them with the color mixes! I don't have to use a canvas to do it. I'll just let the paper palette dry and save it as an example of these mixes.

The colors make some interesting flesh tones and bright and vibrant blue and red.

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Also some pretty green and blue. I decided that it'd be nice for a mermaid or something. And quickly went looking for a reference photo to use, since I wanted to try to paint a portrait. I quickly drew the face underneath with pencil (and totally got it wrong--the face I painted looks way more cartoonish. I painted the eyes last, which might be a poor idea because the eyes seem to be what mostly makes it cartoonish to me. Perhaps if I'd painted the eyes first then I could have seen how the rest of the face needed to be adjusted to scale.

It is a tiny painting. I think 5 inches by 7 inches. But it was quick. I did the hair first (since it's darkest) then the shadows, then the face, then the eyes, then the background.

It's a cool (like cold) color combination imo. I want to try these colors again, but I also have a lot of other colors to try.

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I'm not pleased with the proportions, and it looks cartoonish. Perhaps I should practice drawing more. And I still don't know how to paint.

But I think this worked well for motivation and actually doing something which was my bigger problem (because if I don't do anything, how can I improve?).

So putting the focus on limiting the color and mixing them, and then feeling pressure to use the paints I mixed, helped me to find subject material that seemed to work with the colors, and then try to use those colors to describe the material.

It seems like every time I feel like I've made some kind of "breakthrough" I end up finding it isn't as easy. So hopefully this will last more than the couple times, as strong motivation.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Because I didn't even make an underpainting on this.

And the last one I only did an underpainting and never finished it.

So it's almost like when I think I've figured things out I want to completely change it the next time.

Maybe that's just how the beginnings of things are.

So my plan is to use color as motivation next time, and again start by mixing three colors and exploring them.
 

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most of the painters i love have a very cartoonish style to their work (they are mostly modern era expressionists). tho i do really love one or 2 who are remarkably good at realistic-impressionistic stuff.
but i get what you mean. stylish cartoon is smth different to unintended cartoonish look -.-
it's a matter of practice
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
most of the painters i love have a very cartoonish style to their work (they are mostly modern era expressionists). tho i do really love one or 2 who are remarkably good at realistic-impressionistic stuff.
but i get what you mean. stylish cartoon is smth different to unintended cartoonish look -.-
it's a matter of practice
Yeah--I think that with practice, eventually a style will develop and perhaps it will be my unintended proportion mishaps, but will be better with practice.

I don't know a lot about art theory--I took an art history class in community college, but that's about it. I sometimes do think that when we mix up proportion it reflects a focus and an emotional reaction to the subject of the painting. I was focusing more on colors and at least trying to capture or depict an expression.

--------------------------------------------------

I've been looking through free reference photos, but sometimes it ends up feeling disturbing as if the people in the photos are treated like meat depending on the intention of the photographer. Most is not disturbing, but it ends up feeling hollow. But lately I've just been appreciating if there seems to be something of the person's expression in the photo--like they are showing themselves there too, and the photo reflects something that they see in themselves.

I spent a long time on pexels last night looking for reference material for practice. I like it in some way because I have tons and tons of photos from just taking pictures of anything (I don't know where they are now, probably on flash drives and memory cards somewhere), and I figure many people do--so why not use those references, but I also struggle with how removed they are--some of them are from across the globe in places I've never been.

And the compositions are decided by the photographer--the more intentional photos really are created by the photographer, even if they give license to use. So there's also a feeling that someone else is doing half the work when I don't even have to think much about composition. But I guess it's good for learning--and practice. It's good they allow that--it's just weird to think about. Almost like a collaboration.

So just looking for photos that seem consensual (some of them seem almost like porn or human trafficking) and also hopefully express something of that person. Ugh idk. I think it was easier to paint that other one because choosing the subject material was done quickly to facilitate the mixed paint.

I put (fake) gold leaf on a small 5 x 7 canvas board and am planning to paint on top of it. I wonder what it will be like. I would like to give my dad something he could put in his house, and so find myself constraining myself again thinking about what he would want. I think that process hinders creativity the most. Trying to think of what subject--maybe I'm most insecure about it.

As a kid I used to just draw what was in front of me. Or I'd ask my friends to sit while I drew them. Sometimes I'd create these elaborate stories in my head about scenes--like that this place is the most special place in the world, and only one moment of time it will look like this--and I must capture that moment along with some kind of eternal soul of the place.

Or I remember when my aunt told me to pretend I was taking pictures--so I'd go around with my fingers in front of my eye "composing" photos with my hand. lol I remember once I asked her to take a picture of a random other child at a music concert and she was like "well...people don't always like it when strangers take pictures of their children."

I think that ultimately I just have to do more right now--just stop thinking about it if possible, and just practice more just like as a child. Because practice will help things become more clear. Whether it's stock photos or some sacred special place that I must have been drawn to for my whole life etc.
 
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