Intro to Impressionist Oil Painting - Part 3 - Figurative | Rachael Broadwell | Skillshare

Intro to Impressionist Oil Painting - Part 3 - Figurative

Rachael Broadwell, Fine Arts Teacher

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13 Lessons (2h 12m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Gestural Sketches

    • 3. Selecting a Composition

    • 4. Refined Sketch

    • 5. Supplies

    • 6. Palette Set Up & Toning the Canvas

    • 7. Sketching In the Figure

    • 8. Blocking In the Background

    • 9. Blocking In the Figure

    • 10. Refining & Adjusting the Figure Pt.1

    • 11. Refining & Adjusting the Figure Pt.2

    • 12. Final Thoughts & Clean-Up

    • 13. Bonus! Full Process at 8x Speed

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About This Class

Paint your own figurative subject in a loose, painterly, impressionist style! You can use a live model (a friend, family member, or loved one who wouldn't mind sitting still for a while), photographs (a great free resource for photos is, or go to the CroquisCafe youtube channel (like I did for this course).

You only need a few colors, brushes, and an open mind! Impressionist painting is a great way to relax and learn to let go of control. 

I can't wait to see your projects! If you have any questions, please reach out to me :)


1. Introduction: Hello and welcome to this introductory course on Impressionist oil painting. My name is Rachel, and in this course we're going to explore Impressionist painting through the subject of figurative arts. I'm going to walk you through my entire process from start to finish and show you exactly how I approach this style of painting. Impressionist painting can be fun and relaxing, so I really hope that you'll join me in this class and feel free to ask any questions you might have. And I really look forward to seeing your own projects in the discussion. Thanks so much and let's get painting. 2. Gestural Sketches: the first thing that I'm going toe work on in my process of creating an Impressionist figure painting. So I'm going to do several figure studies in the form of gesture drawings. I'm doing these with just some loose India ink in an old water color paint brush. And the reason that I'm using this as my medium is because I want Teoh be kind of forced toe work very loosely. I don't want to even be able to execute a lot of detail. I'm doing these sketches very, very quickly, and I want to be able to use broad strokes. And I think that a brush is just better for getting really loose sketches than a pen or a pencil. And what I'm using as my reference is actually a YouTube channel. It's called Crow Key Cafe. The word crow key is just another word for a rough draft or a sketch, and this is a YouTube channel that has several different models of varying, you know, genders and body types. And it's just a really great resource to study, figure drawing and what they do in each videos. They have several poses where the model poses just for a minute at a time. Usually I think they do. About five of those were they do one minute poses, and so that kind of forces you to work extremely fast. Then they do a couple of poses that are two minutes long, as you have just a little bit more time. And then they usually at the end, have one pose that is five minutes long. And so the great thing about this resource is, of course, it's free. It's available on YouTube for anyone to use. They have lots of different models. It's not just, you know, women. It's not just a certain body type, so I really encourage you to check that out. And then there are, of course, other wonderful resource is for artists to study anatomy, whether it's, you know, different books that you might buy. Or I'm sure there's other YouTube channels, other websites that specifically help artists with figure drying. And so I really encourage you to kind of check that out of the Cookie Cafe does involve nude models. So if that's not something that you're comfortable with, then you might want to look for other Resource is just make sure that you are not using, Ah, resource that you shouldn't be using due to copyright issues. So you want to make sure that your resource is are meant to be used for your purposes as an artist. And when I'm doing these gesture drawings, you'll see that I'm coming in very boldly. I'm not worried at all about making mistakes. I'm not worried at all about, um, you know, creating something that looks anatomically correct because this is really a problem solving phase as much as it is in ideas generating phase. So what I'm going to be doing is I'm going to be doing many, many of these little short sketches in my sketchbook. I don't worry at all about whether they are overlapping one another. I don't worry it all about, you know, getting features, correct. I'm really just thinking about lines, and I'm thinking about the jester, how it feels to actually do the painting. So there will be, of course, some poses that just are like, uh, you know, it's not even something I necessarily want to look at, let alone spend time painting. But really, you know, I encourage you not to skip out on those because sometimes those do end up being very visually interesting when you're all done and this just gives you a lot of material to choose from a swell when you're trying to narrow it down. And once I have all of these done, I will go over what I'm actually looking for in a figure that I think makes a really good and interesting composition. And this is one of the times where I will actually do a couple of different phases of sketching, because right now these gesture drawings are really just to get a lot of juices flowing to get a lot of different figures to choose from, and really just to kind of get into the mindset of working on a figure. But then, once I have something narrowed down from all of these sketches, I'll go over what I'm looking for in kind of a final composition. And then I'll actually refine that sketch quite a bit and what I'm doing. The painting. I will be working from my refined sketches and not from the actual photo source, and you certainly don't have to use ink to do your sketches. But I really encourage you to use some kind of medium where you can work very quickly and loosely and where you won't even be able to start fidgeting with your sketch too much. Because the point of adjuster sketch really is to work very crudely and loosely and so, INC. Because you can't erase it. And because I'm using a brush, I can't really fiddle with it too much, and I like how these loose compositions come together and make sense to your eye in the end . 3. Selecting a Composition: Now that I have several gestural sketches to choose from, I'm going to just quickly go through some of these and talk a little bit about what kinds of things I'm looking for when I'm thinking about a good composition, something that's gonna be interesting and will kind of draw in the viewer. So and you'll see that there's some of these that I just, you know, whether it was the pose or how I executed it or, you know, whatever reason some of them I just won't really even consider. So I'll talk just about some of my favorite ones. And on this page, this one really stands out to me. And the reason it stands out to me is because I really like this nice line right here. I also like I'm always looking at the gays, especially when I'm doing figures or portrait's. The gaze is very important to me, even though it's not going to be a portrait. There's not going to be a lot of emphasis put on the face, but that's something that, as humans were really drawn Teoh and so I think that in this when she has a very interesting upward gaze she's looking at her own hand. Um, the only thing I don't like about this poses that it has a prop in it. And I'm not necessarily against using a prop in the painting. Um, but that's just one thing that I think I'd rather not. I'd rather just have the figure. And she is sitting on a stool here, another one that I think is somewhat interesting. But ultimately, I don't think that all seriously consider is this one. And even though I don't necessarily like the way that I executed it, I like this l shaped here. And even though it's kind of a very basic L shape in the figure, I like how this leg is folded over and crossed on top of the leg that, uh, is actually closer to us. And then at the same time, this hand kind of juxtaposes that and goes up and the other way. So I think that that's a little bit of an interesting pose. And I don't quite remember what her face was doing in this pose, whether she she might have actually just been looking away. And so I do kind of find that in treating us well when you can't see the face at all. And so I think that that kind of gives the impression that this person is, you know, lost in thought. I also really like both of these poses. I like a lot of the lines in this one. I like the foreshortening, or like a lot of the shadows that are kind of obscuring different forms in the body. The one thing I don't like is that she the model was kind of looking directly at the camera . And I could pretty easily change that, either by painting her with closed eyes or just looking, you know, maybe down something like that, or even tilting her face a little bit downward. Um, but I don't really like. I think that when you have a model who is actually looking directly at the camera, it becomes more of a portrait inherently. And so I may just try to avoid that. This one I really like. Just because there were so much shadow, there was very little of the form that was really being struck by light. And so I find that interesting. I really like forms that are obscured by shadow on this page, The only drawing that I really like and I like it a lot is this one. And what I like is that there's all these lines going this way, so pointing this way. So the arm, the both of the legs are kind of pointing in one direction, and then her gaze is going off this way. So I think that creates a lot of interesting, implied movement within the composition. So I'm thinking about that one, and I really like both of these and I'm not sure, you know, I really like the composition and really like that. She's kind of just in a very relaxed, casual pose, this one seems a little bit maybe too unnatural. Even though it's a very interesting pose. I think this one seems a little bit more natural, were sling on the floor, but then she is up against a wall and has her legs resting against the wall. I also really like that this is a very vertical composition, but then, to add a little bit of interest, you have this arm coming out over here and her gaze going out a little bit that way, so it kind of creates a nice diagonal to the composition. So I'm really thinking about that one as well. Then over here, one that I really like is this one. And I like it a lot because as I waas sketching this one out, and I don't know that I necessarily executed it well, but I really liked the way her hair kind of framed and obscured part of her face and how this line kind of continues down throughout. So I think there's a there's just a really good pattern here. Ah, good line pattern. So that's one that I'm considering. What? See? Yeah, and then this is probably my least favorite page of sketches. I definitely don't like this one. This one, I think, would be interesting if I wanted to actually create a scene where maybe she is climbing into. I'm imagining, like an old bathtub, like a one of those bathtubs that has, you know, the bear claw fee at the bottom. So that one I thought was kind of interesting. This one was also kind of interesting. Just because she was kind of I like the way that she was just kind of slumped over her face was completely obscured. You have a lot of horizontal, um, lines here, But then you have the one arm that's just kind of hanging down very casually. And so I do kind of like the feel of that one. But I think that if these air all that I have to choose from, So that's kind of what I'm looking for. As I am flipping through and looking at my old sketches. What I I'm going to kind of ignore our anywhere the poses just kind of unnatural where, you know, they're obviously posing. This isn't really a casual way that anyone just sits. Also, ones were there, this one, she was standing and kind of doing this yoga pose. And so I'm not, really I'm less interested in stick in standing poses, for one thing and also a little bit less interested in doing this kind of, you know, unnatural poses. I really light. No. Like I said, this one, I feel like it's very natural in any you know, where someone is just kind of laying down, I think are very natural to and then on some of these to that kind of just looked like something that you'd see in a centerfold. And so I'm going Teoh, just stay away from that. That's not exactly my taste. So I'm really leaning toward this one. We'll see. Definitely not sure using any kind of order. And this one? I think so. This one is a top contender, and then this one and I am going to just kind of finalize this process right now and narrow it down. I am going to work on this pose because I just really like how natural it feels. I like this juxtaposition of the vertical lines and then this diagonal arm, and then this implied line from her gaze going out this way. And I think that that just creates a really interesting dynamic to the composition. So this is the one that I'm going Teoh be working on for this class. 4. Refined Sketch: So now I am going Teoh work on kind of a finalized sketch of this composition, and I think this is going to be the orientation of the painting. But I dio and I'm going to do this sketch fairly quickly and loosely as well. I'm sketching on newsprint right now, and I'm just using some charcoal. And again you don't need Teoh use any kind of specific material to do this, Just anything that allows you to work really loosely. And this is actually going to be what I base my painting on. I'm not going Teoh use any, you know, photo reference at all, because to me it's very important in achieving that impressionist look. Teoh not get too caught up in detail. And if you think about the original Impressionist painters, they would a lot of times work from life, and so they wouldn't necessarily have a lot of time to work out. You know, every detail of their composition or their model, and that is what really creates that particular Impressionist feel. So I think it's really important Teoh intentionally limit yourself in a way so that you aren't finding yourself kind of, you know, nit picking every detail, trying to get everything exactly right. And I think even, you know, those of us when we're new at art, maybe especially those of us. When while we're new art, it's actually one of the biggest challenges. Teoh train yourself not to get caught up in every tiny D's hell, because our eyes see so much. Our eyes were really amazing because we can see so much detail. And yet at the same time, we actually don't need all that detail to know what's going on in a composition. That's why, you know, even with our peripheral vision, we can get a lot of information that sort of something that's built into us. So even though we can perceive so much detail, we don't need it. And one of my favorite things about Impressionist work is that it's not just the artist spelling everything out for the viewer. The viewer actually becomes a part of the art in viewing it and putting all these vague pieces of visual information together and finding the subject themselves. And again, I just I do want to make sure that even though I don't need a lot of detail where this faces and the face really is very much for shortened and obscured. I want to make sure that I have this. This gaze is very important. Teoh, my composition, this diagonal line. So I don't want to lose that. One thing that a lot of people struggle with, of course, is hands, and a big benefit of working this way is that we can really simplify those kind of complex forms, and it's still going to be very clear what we're dealing with. So we're not going to worry about painting every finger, getting the shape of the hand, exactly right background in my painting, I'm going to keep very, very simple. In the reference video, the background was basically completely why it? I usually like to have dark backgrounds, and so I might actually change that and make it a dark background. Although then I won't have this shadow over here. So I'll have to think a little bit about that because I really like the way that the shadow helps us kind of determine the what we're looking at in her face is going to be definitely a little bit darker because it will be in shadow and then there's kind of a curtain over here, and I think because we have so much negative space and because this really is a very symmetrical composition, at least until we get here, I kind of like the idea of having this curtain here or maybe putting it here because we have this diagonal line and then this is an implied line. I'm not sure off to think about that right now. I'll have and in both places, I guess. Then there's a little bit of a shadow. You hear that song, and you might just want to start thinking about how you're going to use color. I'm going to be using a very, very simple color palette for this composition. We just don't need a lie. And also using a very limited color palette will really add to the dynamic of your painting in a nice way. Whoops. Pressing too hard. So I will be using just three primary colors, plus white and burnt number. But we'll go over that in that video. Um, I think that this is probably good enough for now. Just end up overworking if I keep going, So the only thing I'm kind of just going to think about is, you know, if I want the this curtain over here or if I want it over on the other side. If I do decide to make the background dark, the curtain will be very subtle. If I leave it light, then it will be a little bit more prominent and matter just a little bit more. So I will think about how I want to handle that. But it's always good just to kind of sketch it out and be able to make those decisions based on something you can actually see. All right, so that's it for the sketch. This is what I'm going to use as my reference while I'm actually painting and you'll see that I didn't even at this point worried too much about, um, making everything quote unquote perfect. Of course, you know it's good. Teoh, at least have your proportions. As faras anatomy goes relatively correct, unless you're going for some kind of stylization. And that's something that you know kind of comes over time. And so if you're new Teoh working on figures, I wouldn't worry about that too much right now because Impressionist painting isn't about being anatomically correct as much as it is just is about communicating just an overall sense. And so you don't need tohave every detail worked out in your composition in order to communicate what's going on. So proportions, I would say, are more important than details. But still, I don't want you to get too caught up with that or start picking at things because we're going Teoh kind of sketch this even onto our canvas in a very quick and loose way. 5. Supplies: let's talk a little bit about some of the supplies that I'll be using. The first thing I'm going to show you is this piece of paper this is called canvas Paper is primed, and you can use oil paint or even acrylic paints on this paper. I think that this is Skansen brand C A N S O N. It's very inexpensive, so it's a very economic way. Teoh practice if you're new to painting and I really like using this paper, and what I'll do is I'll use some masking tape to secure the edges onto my board to keep it in place in the next. I have a palette, of course, and I'll have this right next to my canvas paper while I paint just for the sake of showing you how I mix everything. Next, let's talk a little bit about brushes, so I don't have a lot of brushes here, and none of them are terribly small. And that is on purpose because again, with Impressionist painting, we're going to use lots of big, bold brushstrokes, and we don't want to get too fixated on detail. And when you use a small brush, it's very easy to start picking at your painting. And so I really encourage you. Teoh. Use some larger brushes so that you can make some big, bold brushstrokes. So a lot of these are just flats. That's what I will primarily be using. This one is a size 22 my largest one. It actually says it's a size 14. It's a different brand, and so brands can very in the way that they do their size. Ing's This is a filbert. It's actually a long filbert, so the bristles are a little bit longer than just your average filbert brush, and I like to use Thies to actually do the sketch on my surface. And then these are going to be my smallest brushes. This is actually a pretty regular filbert. You can tell because the and is a little bit rounded, and then another flat s Oh, this is a size 12. This one's a site six you can see. Really, they're very similar in size is, but they are different brands again. So these will be the brushes that I use will also be using this palette knife. This is mostly just to mix paint on my palettes And then I will show you, um, the solvent that I use. You can use odorless mineral spirits. You can even use turpentine or terp annoyed Teoh thing your pains and clean your brushes. This is actually a Citrus oil that I bought. The brand is called Chelsea Chelsea Citrus Oil, and this is a non toxic solvent. So it actually does smell a lot like oranges. And the problem with regular Sylvan's even odorless mineral spirits is that over time that those fumes actually do impact. You and I found that I was getting headaches. So if you are using a traditional solvent like odorless mineral spirits, terp annoyed or turpentine, just make sure that you have it in an airtight container and that you keep the lid on your container at all times when you're not actually using that product. But if you do decide that you're going to continue on with oil painting, I really recommend looking into some of the non toxic solvents options that are out there. Lavender spike oil is another option, and it smells really terrific. The only issue with these is that they are quite a bit more expensive, but definitely worth the investment if you want to do a lot of oil painting, all right, so let's talk a little bit about colors I have here a titanium white, and all these lines and ridges here are actually from using this device. It's called a tube ringer. I bought this on Amazon. It was only about $10 it's wonderful because you will make sure that you use every little bit of your paint. So if you think about when you're squeeze a tube of toothpaste and how much kind of gets stuck down here and goes toe waste over time, this will save you, especially if you're spending a lot on paint or you want to buy these larger tubes and you just don't want any penny of paint going to waste. Definitely recommend this. Like I said, just about $10 on Amazon. Just look for tube ringer. So again, the first color that I'm showing you here is just titanium white. Next, I'm going to be using a cadmium yellow, and this is kind of a warm yellow, and you will know the difference between a warm yellow and a cool yellow by thinking about the color spectrum. Ah, warm yellow is going to be closer on that spectrum to your oranges, whereas a cool yellow will be on that spectrum a little bit closer to what you might think of as like a pure yellow or like a lemon yellow. Next, I am using permanent rose, and you can see that this tube is almost spent, and I'm definitely gonna have to use my to bring her to get everything I can out of this tube. Permanent rose is considered a cool red, and the way you can tell the difference between a cool red and a warm red is that a cool red will be closer on that color spectrum. Teoh, your magenta as and a warm red will be a little bit closer to oranges on that spectrum. Next, I have French ultra Marine blue, and this is a cool blue. It's a little bit closer on the spectrum to violets, whereas a warm blue such as a fellow blue, would be a little bit closer on that spectrum to your greens. And if you're using a limited color palette like I am, I just recommend that you don't just use cool versions of each primary color or just warm versions. Mix it up so I've got a cool read. A cool blue, but a warm yellow and then last color that I'll be using is raw number. I primarily use this just to mix with my French ultra marine blue to create my darkest value that I'll be using. But it is also a warm, earthy color. I just don't typically use it other than to mix my darkest value. And then the last thing that I have are just some paper towels. As I work, I will wipe off my brush. I don't really clean my brush off thoroughly while I'm painting, but if I get to a point where I don't want the paint, that's in those bristles to pollute a mix than I will use paper towels just to try Teoh, get the excess paint out of my bristles as best I can. All right, so now we're ready to set up the pallet, and then tone are surface 6. Palette Set Up & Toning the Canvas: Now I am ready to set up my palate and get started. So I like to arrange the paint on my palette in order from the darkest values to the white ist. And I do encourage you to start thinking about your colors in terms of their local value. So a color straight out of the tube. Where would you put it? On the value scale from darkness to lightness. And so I consider rock number Teoh be one of my darkest colors. And that's because I use it to mix up my darkest value and then the next darkest value I consider to be my French ultra Marine blue. And you will find that blues tend to be universally dark unless you buy some kind of vanity color. Um, it might have some other pigments mixed in that might make it lighter, but in general, blues tend to be on the darker end of the values spectrum. And then typically, reds are a very medium value, and you can see I don't have much left in this tube, so I'm going to demonstrate how I use my two bringer for you. I think I might need to use this for my titanium white as well. So this is a great contraption. Use it a lot, obviously. So you just put your tube in the ringer, clamped down, and then you crank it and it will force the paint out. Now, I'm really at the end of this tube, so it's a little bit gonna be a little bit of a challenge, but I did force a little bit more of it up. So now we should be able just to push it. This is gonna be basically all of this paint in this tube, all right? And it probably will use all of that so you can see I've pretty well and see this out. And then if I want even more can actually use my palette knife to kind of scrapes mount. I think I've got a lot on here. I probably won't need any more than that. So I'll save that last little bit for another painting on. And then yellows tend to be on the lighter and of the value spectrum. And then, of course, white is going to be your lightest. I'm going to use me to bring her for this one as well. And you want to be careful to, especially if you're using smaller tubes of paint, because you don't have to turn it very, very far to get a lot of pain out of there. So if you have a smaller tube, it's going Teoh seem like it's coming out a lot faster just because you have a smaller quantity of paint to begin with. And now what I'm going to Dio is tone my canvas, and you can use any medium value to tone your canvas or your surface. Whatever you're painting on, people tend Teoh like to use, uh, he tones, so a lot of people will use like they're burnt sienna or like an oak er to do this. Or you might even makes a yellow with a red and get kind of an orange. I like to just use straight red. It's just simple. It is your really nice medium toned background toe work on, and I think that that's important because it's a better way to judge your subsequent values that you're painting with. If you have kind of ah toned medium value background as opposed Teoh using, you know something really light like a blank white surface or even something dark. And now, to spread this around I have. This is my Citrus oil that I'm gonna use for this. But you can just use any sold it that you choose. And I'm just getting my bristles a little bit. What? So that I can spread the pain around. I want this paint to be very, very thin, but I try not to use too much solvents because I don't want it to be running. - Okay , okay. And then even though the Citrus oil that I use is non toxic and it smells great, I'm still going to keep my lid on my container because it does evaporate. And because it's a little bit pricey, I definitely don't need to use that as an air pressure in my house. There's less expensive ways to do that. Now I'm just gonna take a paper towel and wipe off any excess moisture. Another great reason to tone your surfaces that it does kind of lubricate the surface. But of course, you don't want it to be too slick because then paint that you put on top isn't going to grip onto the fibers of your surfaces well and That's why I rub it down. It helps to push the pigment into the fibers of your surface, and it also helps to remove any excess moisture from the surface that would make it difficult for your paint to adhere to the surface. All right, and that is how I get ready, and now we're ready to start painting. 7. Sketching In the Figure: now I'm ready. Teoh, use paint to sketch my composition onto my surface. Sometimes to do this all mixed my ultra marine blue with my raw umber. But today I'm actually just going to use some ultra marine blue, and I'm going to use a little bit more of my Citrus oil. Teoh thin this down. That just helps it go on a little bit easier. And it allows me to be a little bit more gestural in sketching this than if I were using thicker paint. And you don't need much of your solvent or thinner just enough to make your pain a little bit smoother and more liquid. But you definitely don't want it to be so liquid that it's going to start dripping. And I'm going to use my Filbert with the long bristles to dio the land. And as I was looking at my composition, there was a couple of things that I wanted to change, even from my final sketch, which I'm using as my reference. And that is that I don't want the legs to be right in the center of the composition, and I like to use the rule of thirds a lot of times when I'm deciding on a composition. So I'm gonna have 1/3 down here. This is going to actually be the base of the wall that she's up against. And then I'm going. Teoh, use this third this vertical third, this is actually going to be the center of her body. And then just so I can help myself to keep things in proportion, I'm going to This markup here is going Teoh Mark where her feet are going to be. And then here are approximately where her hips will land. And then I'm going Teoh put a diagonal line in here and this is really kind of just a visual reminder for me because this diagonal is very important. And so I want to make sure that that is maintained. And I also want it to be very consistent. So we'll have that diagonal of her arm, and then over here is going to be the implied line from her gaze. And so we won't actually see either of these lines in the composition. These air just kind of visual reminders for me more than anything, then this is where we'll put the foreshortened torso and just like with your sketch. This isn't something you have to have, correct or perfect. And the nice thing about oil is that it allows you to kind of continuously refine shapes. So as I go, if there's something that I find that just isn't making sense or wasn't working the way that I thought at first, I should be able just to make modifications as I go. And so that should take a lot of the pressure off of you in this face. - Another good way Teoh approach figure. It's have work, especially when there's a lot of four shortening, and things are in a little bit different perspective than what we're used to seeing is to not think of things in terms of, you know, legs or arms or torsos or face. Think of them as blocky shapes and just be very objective about it. So don't judge it on whether or not it looks like a particular body part. Just try Teoh abstract things, and I know that that is easier said than done. But it's something to continuously practice. I think for any artists that it helps you to kind of separate yourself from the subject matter and I think in the long term it makes a little easier to be accurate while also working in a way that's a little bit abstract. - And I also want to encourage you. Teoh, hold your brush. Not like a pencil. Not like this, because this makes it a lot more tempting for you. Teoh. Use short strokes, whereas if you hold your brush with an open palm, this allows you to work a lot more loosely. When you hold your brush like a pencil, it actually employs a lot more of your fine motor skills. And you might think that for art, for painting you want those fine motor skills. But I find that I get a much more relaxed approach and a relaxed results. Or, you know, something that's just a little bit more pleasing to the eyes if I relax my hand a little bit as I work, okay, so I just about got this late and just so that we can kind of see what is going on. And I really think about this process as kind of just scribbling in. And as I said, you can always make adjustments after this point, but this kind of gives us our first guide us to where things will go. I'm very loosely also thinking about shadows and darkest values and lines. So this really is kind of an extension of the sketching phase because I'm still planning. I'm still thinking about how I want this all to come together. And I also don't want this paint to be very thick at all, because I don't necessarily want it. Teoh impact the paint that I place on top later in, uh, process. And then I also decided that this curtain that I had that was over in the original reference, I am going to put it over here, and I came to that decision also in part by deciding Teoh Place the center of her body over on this vertical third to the right. And so there's going to be this line here that represents a current on the left vertical third. So that's going Teoh provide just a little bit of balance because otherwise there would be a lot of negative space over on this side. And with that, I basically have this sketched in, and we're ready to go on with the rest of this painting 8. Blocking In the Background: Now I am going to mix up my darkest value, which is going to be my French ultra Marine blue in my raw umber. I typically don't like to use black paints. I find it to be just a little bit too flat, and I like the effect of actually mixing up my own dark value, even though it's never a perfect black. But I find it to be a little bit more interesting to look at because it's going to have just little hints of saturation rather than being some kind of flat. Um, kind of, you know, I think of black is a little bit lifeless, actually. You know, a lot of people do like to use black. Um, typically just stay away from it. But that is kind of just a personal choice. There's no right or wrong way about that. And as you paint you, just develop your own strange little preferences. So right now I'm kind of looking at where my darkest values are going to be. I'm still not thinking, and I try throughout the entire process not to think about, you know, right now, or I'm painting feet because I find that Teoh impact my approach in a way that is a little too constrained. And so I really am just trying to think of this as a placement of values and creating these dark shapes. And one of my favorite things to do is to actually lose some edges, especially in the dark's. So right over here, the light was just barely hitting this arm, so I can actually use this dark value to merge this arm in with the shadow that it's casting underneath a little bit. There's not a lot of dark within the Barney only in a few places, and I don't want Teoh start outlining any shape of the body that looks a little bit artificial, I think so. I am being a bit sparing with the darks that I apply on the actual figure. - And even though I'm working with a source and I'm not changing the lighting in any real way from the source, I do want to keep that light in mind. And so the light source is coming from this direction. So like this, which is why the cast shadow is over here on this side. And I toyed with the idea of a very dark background because I thought, you know, this pose was a little bit, you know, contemplated and kind of Think of this is being maybe the end of, ah, strenuous day and this person is kind of just sitting in the dark, contemplating things, but with a very, very dark background, I would not have these interesting cast shadows. And so I think what I'll do, because I will keep the background Ah, a little bit on the darker side. But I definitely need to have these cash shadows. So it's going to have to be kind of Ah, a medium dark. And I also I'm going to keep the tone, which is the warmth or coolness of the overall color. I'm gonna keep that very cool because I want her skin to really contrast with the background. Okay, so I think these air going Teoh be all of my darkest values. I suppose there is a bit of a cast shadow on this side with this curtain I may not. I want it to be quiet as dark as this in the end, but it's actually it's always a safe bet. Teoh start out a little bit darker than you think you might actually want, because it's more difficult. Teoh, um, go back in later when you have a lot of white mixed in and make it darker. So I like to start out dark, and it's a lot easier to lighten up your darks than it is too light or too dark in your lights. That makes sense, because white, any little bit of white that's even just left over on your bristles is going to pollute a dark paint that you put on top. Or even if you have whites mixing with any of the pigment on your surface, and then you try to go over it with a dark pigment. It's going Teoh become polluted. So always push your darks in the beginning of the painting, and you can adjust in the opposite direction a little bit easier. So now you typically like to avoid adding white to my mixes, but I'm actually going to do the entire background before I start on the figure. And since I wanted to be a cool color, I'm going to start out back here with just a little bit of white. That actually might be a bit much I don't want it to just be straight blue. So I re used some of that leftover paint that had the blue and the raw number so that I get a little bit more of a neutral tone going on here. And I don't want to lighten this up too fast, so I didn't use much white at all. But you'll see that this provides enough of the contrast and with the floor, because the light is coming from above a little bit. So the floor is going to be getting a little bit more light than the wall just because it is a horizontal surface. I'm gonna add a little bit more weight to this, and I don't need the floor necessarily to be the same color as the wall. So I think I might just add a little bit of red. And because the light hitting her is going to probably be a warm interior light, add just a little bit of yellow to warm this up a little bit, you can see overall, it's still very cool. It's still very much predominantly blue and just for the sake of consistency before I add any more white to this. I want Teoh kind of bring this. There's a little bit of a shadow falling on the curtain back here, so I want to re use some of that tone over on this side of the composition when I'm mixing. There is really no formula that I use. I'm just constantly experimenting. There's no right or wrong. I'm not really going for any particular color. My sketch reference that I'm using it doesn't have any kind of color reference in at all. The original reference from the video. The background is actually white, and I didn't really want a white background, so I'm kind of just winging it. I want this to be kind of a cool, neutral color, so that's really my only guiding thought as I mixed this and right now I want Teoh make this mix lighter than what I put over here without going too far too fast. So just a little bit of white at a time is all I add, and to keep it neutral. Just a little bit of the straw number. And there, - now again on the floor on just a little bit more color in here, make a little bit more interesting, a little bit more white, and I wanna have enough of this mix to cover the rest of that background, so I need to just makes it a little bit larger quantity. Think again. There's no specific color that I'm going for and a little bit of yellow to warm it up, Really, just thinking about what value I want it to be in terms of how light or dark it is, which I want something kind of medium. And then I wanted to still lean on the cooler side. But since I'm thinking about the lighting situation and that this is an interior, an interior light tends to be very warm. Just why. And I think some of this yellow and it's very subtle, but e think it'll give us a good effect. Okay, you that might actually need to be a little bit lighter. I think sometimes you put it down next to your other values and realize that I didn't interpret it quite right so you can always adjust. There we go and you can see that I am placing my bristles kind of at the edge of where the figure form of the figure starts and pulling away from that. And that helps me to maintain the integrity of that sketch and to not leave too much space between the form in the background and then just to finish up the background where this perkiness I wanted to stand out just a little bit. So I'm going to use the same mixture. I'm gonna add a little bit more yellow to it to warm it up. And you see that that really compared to everything else that's extremely warm. And I still wanted to be This one doesn't necessarily even have to lean cool. But I don't want it to go too far over to the other side and be overtly warm compared to everything else that's still just seems very, very warm to me. Okay? And I'm planning just to use the rest of this so I can use my palette knife. Just Teoh quiet like that on my brush to move around a little bit. Going to this is a little dark over here, so I'm just gonna soften that a little bit. I will probably come back in and do a little bit more work on the background as I go but I really just wanted to get this blocked in right now. So for now, I think that this is good and I can go ahead and start blocking in the values and tones for my figure. 9. Blocking In the Figure: now I'm ready to start blocking in my figure. And you know that one question that comes up a lot in artist circles is how to mix flesh tones. It's really it doesn't have to be difficult. Essentially, all skin is brown. And to get a brown or neutral color totally have to Dio is mix all the primary colors together in a proportion that makes sense, and then you use white to lighten it to the degree that is appropriate. And again, I never think about this process as mixing a particular color. I'm always just thinking about value, so the lightness and darkness and the tone, which is the warmth or the coolness. So for the shadowed parts of the skin, I still want this to be a little bit cooler. Doesn't need to be this dark, and it's a little bit difficult when it is the stark. Before you've added any white, it's a little bit hard to tell really what color you're dealing with. So what I'll dio is I'll put a little to the side. I'll grab just a little bit of white, and this will kind of reveal what color we're looking at right here. So this is looking a little bit violet, which I am flying with, and even for the shadows on the body were going toe. Lighten this up quite a bit. So again, when you're thinking about skin tones, there's really no need to be overly particular. I like to be very subjective, not just with form, but also with color. Oh, let's see Think. Well, let's see. So I'm gonna continue to use this brush. This is my largest brush. I try to use this as long as possible. And I didn't clean it off either before he did this, because there's really no need Teoh, if I don't have to worry about the color that I'm using, being polluted and I really only worry about color pollution if I get to a point where I'm using a very vivid and pure color, which this is not obviously because I used every primary color to mix this. But I want to continue to use my largest brush because it forces me to work in a very general way and you can see over here there's not a lot of contrast between this shadow color and the color that I used on that side of the wall. But over here there's a lot of contrast between this and that cast shadow, and this actually might be too light for that. So I think I'll stop. I'm gonna put any more of this over there quite yet. I think I might try Teoh go a little bit darker over there because the shadow on this side of the figure where the light is hitting first is going to be a lighter value shadow than any shadow over on this side of the body. - Okay , so I am going to try to mix up a little bit darker, fell You. We'll use a little bit of this. We have some consistency between the colors. Look, just tiniest amount of white, okay? And so this mix that I have on this side of the brush has a little bit more white in it, so I'm going to use this side of my brush. Teoh, apply this shadow just so I don't pollute the darker shadow too much. Okay? I like to reuse my mixes. It helps with consistency, and it kind of becomes a building block for subsequent mixes. So I'm going Teoh start mixing colors that are much warmer. I'm going to be using more of my reds and yellows and stop. I'll probably completely stop putting blew into the mixture, and I also start using a lot more white. - I think this color will probably become basis to cover most of the rest of the form. It won't be the lightest value that I use or the warmest, but it's going. Teoh kind of be my bass tone and based value for the figure that I can add highlights, too. And so for this one, I am just gonna wipe off my brush. There's a lot of excess paint in the bristles, - and you'll notice that I place my strokes adjacent to one another. I don't like to do a lot of blending because I like Teoh, maintain my brush strokes, I think, but especially with Impressionist painting, that adds a lot of visual interest, and I really like the effect of wedding. These individual adjacent brushstrokes come together to create the illusion of form. I also don't really mind some of that toned surface showing through. In the end. I don't know that a lot of that will be visible But for now, it definitely doesn't bother me. It really wouldn't bother me if I maintained it throughout the painting, But that's actually easier said than done. I think I usually find that I end up covering it pretty well in the end. Okay, so now we have the figure blocked in, and I will probably go ahead and clean this large brush off at this point. Um, and put it aside, I may come back to it later, but for now, I think I am probably done with this and we'll move on to my smaller brushes. 10. Refining & Adjusting the Figure Pt.1: Okay, so now I am moving on to one of my smaller brushes and this is another flat, and you can see press into the last brush that I was using significantly smaller. But it's definitely not a brush that you used to do Fine details. And of course I'm doing an Impressionist painting. And so I don't want fine details. I want lots brushstrokes, and this is the mixed that I used for kind of the base value of the flesh, the skin. And so I'm going. Teoh set this aside and I'm just going to borrow from it because it's going to serve as a foundation for the rest of the tones that I developed. As I said, I'm going to start lightening the value and also warming the tone. So I'm going to be adding mostly yellows and reds to this mix and white for this right now , though, I don't want to necessarily add any white. I don't want to change the value to drastically, but I did want to warm that up significantly and because I have a lot of pain already down , I have to apply very thick brush stroke, so I load. Ah, lot of paint onto my brush, and then I apply it with a very light touch, because I don't want it to mix to mention with the paint underneath of it. And you should really make an effort to not be too close to your canvas or your surface. I'm standing up and a little bit over my I'm usually I like mine just to be directly in front of me. But for the purposes of filming, this is kind of the easiest set up. But when you are too close to your painting, that really lends itself to paying a little bit too much attention to the details and not the overall effect that your going for. So it's good to stand back what and again, I use my colors very subjectively. And so I don't have to be a slave Teoh replicating exactly what I see and I really just rely on everything coming together in the end to create the effect that I'm going for. And even though a lot of times the process, a lot of times the process looks a little bit awkward. As you go, you really have to just start getting used to that and have a little bit of faith that things were going to come together in the end and work through what I call the awkward phase of a painting. It's kind of like the awkward teen years that we all go through when we're kind of developing and coming into ourselves. So you really have to think about the development of your painting like that a little bit, too. And don't judge it at that point. It's very important, and you should every painting that you start, you really should commit to seeing it through, and you'll find that some of your biggest successes will come from paintings that you thought had no hope. At some point in the process, I spent a lot of time working within relatively the same value range, but I added a lot of contrast, just with color. But I still need Teoh have a lot of well, I shouldn't say a lot, but there's going to be highlights that do a lot of this work for us. - But at the same time, I want to be very mindful to not add too much white too fast because then we get an effect that looks a little bit washed out, but also don't worry, like here. It kind of push that paint a little into the hair. But that's okay. Just go with the flow. Don't worry about little mistakes like that, because we can always come back and adjust. - Has the paint gets thicker and thicker? We have to be more mindful about what we're applying and how we're applying it. - I wiped off some of the excess paint from this brush. Biden clean it off. Otherwise, really No need to at this point, - okay ? And sometimes you also just need to take a little bit of a break so that you can walk away from your painting, look at it from a distance and kind of see how it's coming together so far. And then you can start analyzing a little bit any adjustments that you need to make. For the most part, I think we have most of our values in here. Just at first glance, I can see I want Teoh go back in with some really thick, dark paint right in this area, too dark and not back up and maybe adjust where this hair is meeting the arm a little bit. And so I know right off hand that those air some of the things that I'm going to address next. But I take this opportunity just to take a few minutes, Teoh. You know, Stretch, do something else. Refresh yourself and then come back to your painting so that you will see it with somewhat new eyes. 11. Refining & Adjusting the Figure Pt.2: Now, I've taken a little bit of time away from my painting, which sometimes is very important even though you might get into a good flow states. But if you get to a point where you're just not quite sure what is going to come next, I really do encourage you to just step back, take some time away from your painting, and then when you come back and look at it, you're going thio more easily. Identify what you like about what's happening in your painting so far and what direction you might want to take from there. So I am looking at this painting, and I like a lot of these big brushstrokes that I have in here. I've lost some of the darks where I really wanted them, so I will need to come back in there. I am now going to be using my smaller Filbert so I'll just compare this to the last brush that I was using. So I was using this flat before. They're just about the same width. These both are not going to be good detail Russia's and one thing I decided was that there might actually be a few spots that I want to use some smaller brushes, so I grab some of those just in case. And I also know I'm going to do some more work on the background. But I actually do want to just focus on the figure for now and get that wrapped up in squared away. So I'm gonna mix up pretty dark value. Maybe I'll just use a little bit more of my wrong number to neutralize that a bit. And because my paint that I have down already is fairly thick. I need Teoh. Apply this pretty thick, but I don't want Teoh press my bristles onto the surface too hard. So just a light touch is all I really need for that paint to transfer from my brush to my surface. And what I'm doing here is I'm just kind of re establishing some of the form that I think has been lost with all the mid tone, mid tones and mid values that I have placed. So I just want separate some of these forms in a few areas. - And even though this massive hair is fairly dark, I don't want it to be really, really flat, so I'm just adding some thick brush strokes. Uh, very subtly different. Coloring the boats, all very dark still in subtle value changes subtle color changes. You might think that they're almost too subtle. It's, um, points or in some level, but they actually really do a lot for you. - E think I'm gonna mix up a little bit more of us still have quite a bit on my palette, but because I need to apply it so thick, I need to make sure I have enough Teoh really load my brush up. If it that I'm going to borrow some from that pile just to start whitening this up suddenly - and again really resist the urge to start picking at it too much. I think at some point it's important just to look and see how your painting is reading on an objective level and just kind of be okay with that. You see that sometimes when I want to apply a very light touch, I'll hold my brush just with two fingers so that I don't have ah, a very firm grip on that kind of prevents me from being able Teoh press too hard, and now I just kind of want to re establish some of the shadow over here. I'm gonna mix up just a little bit of that very dark value. But I started out with just ultra Marine. And remember, my camera stopped just for a little bit. So unfortunately, I can't take my painting back those couple of minutes all kind of just show you what I have done. Um, since my camera cut out, all I've really done was I added some warmer tones over here where this curtain is just to distinguish it from the rest of the background. And so what I did was I actually used that dark mixture that I was using in the shadows of the figure. And then I mixed it with a little bit of flesh tone to get this neutral color. I did add some yellow to it just to warm it up a little bit. But that's pretty much all that happened in all that you missed. And I think that we're just getting very close to being able to wrap this up. There are just a very few small features that I want to bring out just to because the direction of the models days is so important. So I do need to indicate where her eyes are. And so to do that, I did Go ahead and grab a slightly smaller brush. I'm gonna just size compare these. This is the brush I was using just a minute ago. And then this brush, it has a little bit more of a point, and I have a little bit more control with it. So that's what I'm going to use Teoh. Just add, um really just where her eyes are a believe. So I'm gonna go ahead and mix up that dark value again. And the paint where her face is is fairly dark. So I'll have Teoh load my brush up pretty well. Just taking a look at my reference here. I just want things to make sense, even though it's gonna be a subtle indication. And this is actually I think an eyebrow more than it isn't high right here because of the foreshortening on the face, the eyes almost not visible. Just a little bit. Think that still a little marked to indicate nos and then a little bit of shadow over here to separate her forehead from rest of the body And then again, I want to just add a little bit more variation and the Harry the boats. Very so. And I'm not going to worry about fingers, but I'm just going to indicate a little bit of darkness right there. We'll need Teoh draw out each finger. Same over here. What? Teoh Make it a little bit more clear. It's an open hand. This is the only part of the painting, were kind of holding my paintbrush like a pencil, then wants to distinguish her word cage here a little bit more. - I'm going to kind of wipe some of the excess paint off. Just move some of the sick pain around. Sometimes when you're paint gets to a certain thickness, it's actually rather than adding more pain might be a better idea just to kind of shifted around and see if you can push it where you'd rather it be. All right, well, I think that I'm happy with this at this point. There's never any clear answer. Teoh. When your paint painting is quote unquote finished, it really is up to you to find that good stopping points. And Teoh, you know, don't don't think that you always have to keep working on it too far. Get it to a point where you think that it's kind of visually interesting and force yourself to stop at that point. And then I think that you'll find that when you come back to it later, you'll be really glad that you did. All right, So in the next video, I'm just gonna very quickly show you how to handle having excess paint on your palate, how you can save that s so that you don't have to feel like you're wasting it, but otherwise I think that this painting is complete. 12. Final Thoughts & Clean-Up: all right. And before I show you how I can clean up my palate really quickly and save some of these piles of paint that I didn't completely use, I'm going Teoh first, show you a close up of my painting and I'm just going to remove the masking tape. You have to be a little bit careful when you do this. If you're using paper like what I used, Okay, It's kind of nice using this paper and using masking tape to secure it, because then you have this nice border around it, and that helps you just Teoh be able to move it very easily. So try to get this pretty close. You can see all the brush strokes in here. Let the light kind of glare off of it to show you all the texture by use very thick brushstrokes. It really don't blend. I just put different values, different colors, different tones next to each other. And I let the eyes of the viewer do a little bit of that work, bringing the composition together and you can see I don't really have any detail in the face. There's just a very few marks to indicate some facial features, and I didn't feel any need to paint out each toe or each finger. So you can really see how these big, broad, bold brushstrokes work together. Teoh create form and the viewers eyes do a lot of the work to just kind of bring that together. And so I really like how paintings like this turnout. I think that there really interesting and intriguing to dio there also a little bit more relaxed. They're not so tedious, so I'm gonna set this aside. What I usually do is I'll just use a paper clip to clip this, um, up here on the border and hang it while it dries, because oil paintings do take a while to drive. But for now, I'll just sent in society and what I do with excess pains. I have these plastic condiment cups that I bought from Amazon. I think I got 100 of them for, like, $10 to the really, really nice. And then I used my palette knife just to scrape the paint off the pallets and into the cup , and there's a lot of room in here. There's not that much paint, so I'm actually going to put a lot of pain into one cup, but I'll just keep them separate. I think I'll just put these dark colors into this cup, put a lid on it and then you can just But these cops in your freezer and the paint will stay workable for a pretty long time. I tried Teoh, you know, paint almost every day. So, um, but I do know that I've left paint in the freezer for a couple of weeks, and I was still able to use it. Sometimes I just forget that it's in the freezer. Nall squeeze out some new paint, but this is a really great way. Teoh, Save your paint. If you did squeeze out too much and I typically I don't save my mixes. There's usually just not enough to make it worth it to save. So what I'll do with the rest of this pain is just scrape it down, wipe it into a paper towel, try to get as much office I can, and I've definitely ruined a lot of pallets. Pellets don't have to be very expensive, but I still just don't like to waste pellets, so I try to do a much better job of thoroughly cleaning my pallets off, And I'm just going to use a little bit of my Citrus oil that you can use any solvent that you happen to have and then just wipe off all this excess pains and you'll still get stains , most likely unless you're, you know, even more vigilant than I am. But I've actually been very careful with this palette that I have here. They really like it, but I still get stains, and that's okay. I just like to make sure that I have a really flat, smooth surface to mix on, since I use my pellet nick to do mixes. And if you let a lot of paint dry on your palate, you're going to get a really rough surface. If you have a glass palate, you can use a razor to scrape off dried paint, but with a wooden pallet that doesn't work very well because you end up just gouging into the wood. So that's it. That's how I clean up. And I really hope that you enjoyed this course, and I really look forward to seeing your projects in the comments. Thanks so much 13. Bonus! Full Process at 8x Speed: - no .