Painting Tips

Latest Posts

Great White Attack!

Whoa! Hold them horses! I am not talking about a great white shark attack! I am talking about the huge 8-canvas conglomeration of white that is staring me right in the face! Here I thought one white canvas was intimidating, and then I put eight together to work in a series. Oh my! However, I… read more

Pool of Pours

Ever look at the white canvas/paper before you and wonder, “Where do I start?” The vivid whiteness is intimidating and often stops even the best artists right in their tracks. Tired of this feeling of not knowing how to start? Be bold and use pours! The fastest way I have found to get rid of… read more

Cherish Depth Perception

  In the Marion Heritage Center hang two of my acrylic paintings. One is “Forged Into Steel” which was the last painting I did before my eyesight was restored. Many have asked me how this could be, that I could paint this powerful painting (their words) without seeing. It seems mission impossible, does it not?… read more


  Indulgence…what does that mean to an artist?   Many times non-artists envelop artists with the erroneous thought that successful artists are only those who sell zillions of paintings. What occurs is that artists are stifled and made to feel guilty when indulging on a painting that we do actually for ourselves. Non-artists feel it… read more


    An artist friend in Iowa City recommended that I try Liquitex Heavy Body Acrylic Paint.  He is an oil painter, who has crossed over into acrylics. He likes the similarity of oils and Heavy Body. Nevertheless, having spent many years painting in watercolor, I am finding this Heavy Body consistency to be a… read more

Essence of Joy

  One of my favorite things to do is just plain ol’ painting, which is a blast of fun. I forget all the pressures of creating art and just concentrate on releasing what is inside of me. My painting may not end up as an abstract or it may not even turn out at all!… read more

Behold the Ruby!

  Many artists use the red filter as one of their vital tools in creating values. My red filter, the Ruby Beholder, is among my most valuable art tool treasures. Using the Ruby Beholder enables the artist to magnify the principle of values even further. What does a Ruby Beholder look like? This is a… read more

Valuable Values

In preparation for my painting session today, I had previously painted a faint, or weak in color, acrylic painting of a waterpot. This technique suffices as a light sketch. In my studio, before I did anything else this morning, I created some valuable value scales of each of the colors on my painting. The value… read more

“Free as a Lark” Painting

Today I am free to paint all day! I look forward to these complete days of painting! When I paint, I usually start out with a composition in mind. This morning I decided to use the Checker Board composition, which I call the “H Checkerboard.” The opposite corners match in value, color, or pattern.  For… read more

John Marin Part 3: Charcoal IN Watercolor? Oh My!

  Adding my observations from viewing the artist John Marin originals in the Art Institute of Chicago to what I gleaned from studying John Marin’s Watercolors – A Medium for Modernism, I have a revelation about the substances Marin added to his watercolors to achieve his improvisational expressions. He was not concerned about traditional watercolor… read more