Russian “Mandalas” - Russian Folk Art Composition for Beginners | Irina De Vicente | Skillshare

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Russian “Mandalas” - Russian Folk Art Composition for Beginners

teacher avatar Irina De Vicente, Russian Folk Art Artist

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

20 Lessons (1h 54m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Class Project

    • 3. History of Khokhloma Art

    • 4. Tools & Materials

    • 5. How to Prepare a Golden Background

    • 6. Position of the Hand

    • 7. Basic Elements: Preparing the Paint

    • 8. Basic Elements: Drop

    • 9. Basic Elements: Runners

    • 10. Basic Elements: Swirl

    • 11. Basic Elements: Grass

    • 12. Basic Elements: Stem

    • 13. Basic Elements: Summary

    • 14. Complex Element: Bush

    • 15. Outline of the "Pryanik"

    • 16. Your "Pryanik": Red Stage

    • 17. Your "Pryanik": Black Stage

    • 18. Your "Pryanik": Decoration

    • 19. Symbolism in Khokhloma

    • 20. Final Words

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About This Class

Khokhloma is one of the oldest Russian folk art style which is recognized all over the world.

My goal in this painting class is to tell you a history of Khokhloma style and teach you in a simple and structured way the basic elements, canons and rules of Khokhloma painting to start creating your own Russian traditional folk pattern. In the end of this class I’m going to tell you what a hidden symbolic meaning is in this style.


I would recommend this class for:

beginners without any experience in painting, because we will start from basic elements;

people who like handicrafts to decorate their homes and create interesting souvenirs for their family and friends;

experienced painters and illustrators who want to learn new techniques and ideas.

Materials we are going to use:

- paper (black or white);

- an acrylic paint, a gouache or a watercolor: only black and red;

- an acrylic gold paint (optional);

- a squirrel brush or synthetic brush N2 or N3;

- a ruler, a compass (optional), an eraser, a pencil;

- a palette or a plate;

- cotton buds, napkins/paper towels, a glass of water.

 By the end of this class, you will realize:

  1. The interesting thing is that you can paint this composition on paper or canvas and put it on a wall. You can create postcards, and also decorate boxes, accessories, furniture, clothes and other things. And it can be a stylish decoration with symbolic meaning for your space;
  2. I called this composition for myself “Russian mandalas”. When you will start to draw it with me I think you are going to understand why. For me it is not only a fantastic creative process, it is also amazing relaxation. Its effect can be compared with a deep meditation improving your mind concentration and reduce stress;
  3. It is a nice simple way to get to grips with Russian folk art, because we can see the basic elements of Khokhloma in all the other decorative Russian styles and even on Russian icons. So it will help you to move further in your decorative art practice if you wish to continue.

Looking forward to see you at me class!

Meet Your Teacher

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Irina De Vicente

Russian Folk Art Artist


Hello everyone!!

My name is Irina De Vicente. I am Russian, I was born and grew up in St. Petersburg. At the moment I live with my family in Galicia, Spain.


Since I can remember, I have always been interested in art, so I began to study classical painting at a private art school and I studied art at the “Imperial Academy of Fine Arts” in St. Petersburg. There, I fell in love with the artistic heritage of Russia, but especially with Russian folk art: Khokhloma, Zhostovo, Palekh, Fedoskino, Mezen etc. These styles are now famous all over the world.


My goal on SkillShare is to teach you in a simple and structured way, the basic techniques of Russian Folk Art to start creating your own art works. In the process you will learn a hi... See full profile

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1. Introduction: As the famous Mandala art therapy demonstrates, drawing ornaments is very relaxing and calming. I personally enjoy this feeling a lot. There is something magical in the process of creating a Mandala Art piece. Privet! Hi everyone! My name is Irina De Vicente and I am so happy to be with you here today. You know, since I can remember myself, I have been always interested in art. I was studying art in the Academy of Fine Arts in St.Petersburg. I studied academic drawing and painting in different techniques in an art school. But today, I would like to speak to you about Folk Art of my country. You know, I always felt my mission is to share the heritage of Russia with people all over the world. And today, I would like to share with you my painting skills in the very famous and my favorite Russian style - Khokhloma. To enjoy this class, you don't need any experience in hand painting. I will start by teaching you the correct position of a hand as Russian masters used to do. I show you the basic elements and tell you about cannons and rules of Khokhloma. I will tell you history of this folk art, which goes back more than 300 years. And I will explain you symbolic meaning of each element. By the end of this class, you will be able not only to turn basic elements to your own Khokhloma complex composition with a modern look. But you can also read your artwork like an ancient message of old Russian masters. This artwork can be painted on paper or canvas to become a stylish wall decoration with symbolic meaning for your space. A postcard or poster, a decorated box, accessories, furniture, clothes and other things. And if you have digital design skills, you can also create a fascinating pattern in Russian traditional style. I would recommend this class: for beginners without any experience in painting, because I'm going to walk you through the basics. People who like handicrafts to decorate their homes and create interesting souvenirs for their families and friends or simply make something for pleasure. Experienced painters and illustrators who want to learn new techniques and ideas. Guys, I really hope you can join my class and enjoy creating Russian Mandala with me. 2. Class Project: As a final class project, I'm going to teach you to create a Khokhloma composition called "Pryanik". It means Gingerbread in Russian language. Centuries ago, it was traditionally located on the bottom of a bowl or a plate. It is one of the oldest composition in Khokhloma, but looks very interesting and modern. Composition "Pryanik" is a good place to start for the beginners. And there are two reasons why I would like to start with it. First of all, it contains only basic elements, but it doesn't mean that it will look simple. The second is, I personally like "Pryanik" so much that I always come back to this composition and I paint and again and again on different surfaces, different sizes. And I'm never bored of it and never tired. After a little practice when you will start to feel free with the basic elements, you can find this process is very relaxing. It is like you disconnect your brain and you just start to follow the flow. I hope you understand what I mean. For the successful implementation of the project, I would recommend you five steps. First of all, download the greed to get started with the practice of the basic elements of Khokhloma. Then practice basic elements. And once you're comfortable with it, you can move to the next step. And on the stage, please share your achievements with me in the Discussions section, and I will give you my feedback on your progress. Then create your "Pryanik" composition as I show in my lessons. After that share your final work in the Project Gallery. And I will be so happy to look at it and give you my recommendation on how to improve it and what you did very well, and definitely my likes. And the last stage is present your masterpiece to the world with your explanation of its symbolism. If you share your artwork on the social media, be sure to use hashtag #RussianMandalaProject. And I will be so proud to demonstrate your art works to my followers. And if you have any questions or need extra guidance, please feel free to reach out to me in the Discussions section of this class. I can not wait to start! So looking forward to seeing you practice Khokhloma painting. “Paehali!” 3. History of Khokhloma Art: Khokhloma is a very recognizable traditional style and one of the symbols of Russia. You can see designs in the Khokhloma style on the uniforms of the Russian Olympic team. The Khokhloma factory is a sponsor of all major sport events in Russia. On cars, on buildings, on special editions of goods, on traditional Russian souvenirs. And of course on the famous tableware. But let's go back to the beginning of its history. Did you know that the Khokhloma masters had an original technique of painting wood a golden color without the use of gold, and though the items are wooden, they look like gilded metal? And what is the strange name Khokhloma? Khokhloma is the name of a village in Nizhni Novgorod Province, but nobody ever created ornate wooden tableware and furniture there. Khokhloma village just had a big market. In the 17th century, painted wooden items were brought there from nearby villages for sale, but they were never manufactured in Khokhloma itself. In the market of Khokhloma, merchants bought goods very cheap and then took them to the biggest market in Russia at that time, Makaryevo Fair, to sell them more expensively. At the Makaryevo Fair, they were not only Russian customers but also foreign customers. So Khokhloma products first went to the east and then to the west. That's how Khokhloma gained international fame. They say there have always been a lot of wood carvers in this area because there is a lot of linden wood around. And linden, as we know, is a very good material for carving. According to one of the theories, the masters got the floral decorations and the special technique of making golden things without the use of gold from monks, icon painters. They were the Old Believers, monks who had fled from Moscow, because they did not agree with the new religious reforms of Patriarch Nikon and they were hiding in the woods of Nizhni Novgorod Province from the Tsar’s soldiers. Actually, a lot of people, who had escaped from persecution for the "old faith", had long lived in small villages and forests. Many of them were icon painters, , so they had brought handmade books with bright pictures, old icons, calligraphy, fine painting crafts, and floral patterns. As a result, the locals adopted the knowledge of the icon painters and began to use it in their craft. In the second half of 19th century, Russian style became fashionable and interest in Russian crafts was growing. Members of the royal family became interested in Khokhloma painting as well. Khokhloma artworks were widely distributed through local markets and fairs. Exports of these products had grown strongly after being awarded the ‘Grand Prix’ at the Paris International Exhibition of 1889. There is an interesting fact: for two hundred years only men created Khokhloma tableware and furniture, it was a man's business, they did the carving and painting by themselves. In 1941, all the men went to war, the Second World War, and from this moment, women replaced men in the Khokhloma Factory. And still the painting of Khokhloma is done almost only by women. The technique of creating Khokhloma tableware has not changed a lot since then. There are several stages: First, linden logs dry in the fresh air for at least a year. Can you imagine? Then a turner makes pieces of different shapes, then the shaped pieces are dried in the kiln. A thin layer of brown clay "primer" is applied by hand and they are kiln-dried again, and after three or four coats of oil are applied, are applied, each item is air-dried again. The piece becomes similar to ceramics. The next stage is tinning: the item is covered with aluminum metallic powder. Once they had used silver powder and, later, cheaper tin powder. Now it becomes similar to a metal piece. Then the work is covered with several layers of varnish, each of them dried separately in a stove. It is under the influence of high temperatures that the varnish turns the silver color of the piece into a golden color. What a magic! And, finally, the golden-colored piece is ready for painting Khokhloma painting amazes with its delicate grass patterns and festive [ˈfestɪv] coloring, which are based on a combination of red and gold against the black lacquer background. This is a feature only found in Khokhloma! And that was exactly how the technique of painting icons and these decorations on the edges of icons, became the basics of Khokhloma painting. And now, when you know the history of Khokhloma and you have seen all technological process at the factory. Let's bring this painting from the factory to your desk. And we are going to speak about what do we need for this - tools and materials. 4. Tools & Materials: Okay, these are three main things. Paper, paint and brushes. To practice basic elements you need usual copy paper. It is smooth enough, but avoid blurring and the brush will slide well. For your final project, you can also use copy paper or you can take colored paper and more thick. I like to do it on the black paper with a prepared golden circle in advance. I find the combination of black, red, and golden is spectacular and it is a traditional combination of Khokhloma. In the original Khokhloma painting they use only four colors: black, red, green, and yellow. For our composition today we need only red and black. In the factory of Khokhloma masters use oil paint, but I think at home it is quite uncomfortable because of the smell and time to dry your painting. That’s why I use acrylic or vinyl paint. This is the vinyl paint. Also, you can use watercolor or gouache or ink. Just take care if you use golden background your paint can lay down on it. You don’t need to buy an expensive brush, it can be a very simple one. However, I would recommend to pay attention to the shape of the toe of your brush. For Khokhloma we use brushes with a shape of bristles as an ice cream cone. Like this. Sometimes you can find the shape of bristles like this or like this. No, we are looking for this one. Better to use natural hair brush, squirrel or Kolinsky. This is Canadian squirrel. Kolinsky is quite expensive, but just in case that you have because it keeps water better than synthetic. But you can also use the synthetic brush, just take care of the shape, it is the most important. A golden paint, a glass of water, a compass, a pencil, an eraser, cotton buds, a ruler, napkins and a palette. Why do I recommend to use a golden background? Because you can wipe, erase a paint from this surface if you made some mistake or you are not satisfied with any element. I'm going to show you. For example, you do some element and you don't like it. So you are taking a cotton bud, a little bit of water and you can correct it. Or you can take a napkin and completely wipe it. Like this you can repeat again and again. 5. How to Prepare a Golden Background: In this video, I would like to tell you how to prepare background for painting. I take a sheet of the paper and I want to paint a golden circle on it. I have black paper here with a density of 400 grams. And now I will need a ruler, a pencil, a compass, and a brush. I will take the synthetic one. Also Golden acrylic paint. In this case, I have a fringe final paint, the font bourgeois. It can be golden or silver, black, yellow, red, blue paint. Depending on your composition. Sometimes I use acrylic paint, liquid techs. You can use these paints on any surface. Paper, mood, glass, ceramics, metal, plastic, leather. There is no restriction. So I will find the center of the sheet and draw is so-called with a radius of 10 centimeters or approximately four inches. Now, take a golden paint and first take a shape of the circle with a small brush so that the age will be as neat as possible. I advise you to apply the paint in the very thin layers so that the paint doesn't lie with irregularities because this will be visible after drying. It is better to apply for five thin layers than 20k ones. Now, I'm going to take a big brush and apply the first layer. Again, I repeat, spread the paint with a vertical and horizontal strokes, alternating them. So this kind of scars would be not visible. This second layer, the band dries very quickly. Moreover, the fresh paint is lighter, and when it dries, it becomes illegal. Darker and more saturated golden color, you know, apply the next layer only when the previous one is dry. The third layer. And the 4th. It depends on the surface you are covering and the quality of the paint, how many layers to use? It seems to me that four layers I have here. I have a pretty thick paper, but even it was a little wet. But it's okay. I will put this sheet aside to dry and now I will take a new sheet of the same paper. I want to cover this paper completely and I will take a bigger brush, also synthetic because I don't need to control the borders here as it was with a circle. And I can apply the paint with a more free movements. Well, let's go the first layer. And again, I spread the paint as much as possible from top to bottom, from side-to-side until the brush dries. And only then I put more paint on the brush. We are waiting for the second layer to dry out. The third layer. Do you see now how the color of fresh band differs from dry part? And the fourth one, the last. The sheet of paper is still wet and deformed a little bit, but this will be corrected after drying is done. We put it aside to dry. And the last option that I wanted to show you today is a piece of plywood. I bought a set of five such pieces on Amazon. It has a thickness of three millimeters. I have already coated the wooden surface with acrylic varnish. It can be any vanish actually and send it with the sandpaper, Phoenicia and sandpaper you can buy either in construction or arts tours. These actions will be protect the surface from dust and dirt, which we will not cover under the background of the composition. And will also reduce the consumption of paint since the paint will not be absorbed into the wood. In all those who draw a so-called weekend to use as Columbus, or if necessary, regularly eat. Sometimes it's even more convenient. We'd cover it in four layers as well as we don't let paper before. Okay, everything is done and we leave all these layers to dry. And now let's look at what we've got here. The first sample wasn't paper. You see, I didn't spread the paint at the age. Where do well and their war such irregularities. It's not pretty, of course, we can cover this with the painting, but ideally, we should try to avoid it and apply layers as thin as possible. The second sheet, completely covered, turned out perfectly. And the last option on a wooden surface, Looks good two. And the last thing, my life hack, let's say the fact is that the after the coating, the acrylic surface remains a little greasy. If we start painting on such a surface right away, the paint will not fit well and roll off. Therefore, it is better to decrease it with a medical alcohol. I have, for example here medical alcohol 70 percent. This is how we apply alcohol on the cotton pad or a cloth and wipe the surface of the paint. We do it quickly, not too much, so that the paint layer doesn't begin to dissolve, to melt. Please don't use nail polish remover, AC tone, or a stronger alcohol for this purpose, you can destroy the paint code. 6. Position of the Hand: Masters of Khokhloma hold a brush differently than artists in fine art painting and differently than we hold a pen. It is important to take the correct position of the hand from the beginning, because this is already half the success in painting Khokhloma. This technique has been tested for centuries and has passed down from generation to generation. The brush should be held with three fingers by the metal ferrule of the brush. You put the lower part of the ferrule on the pad of the middle finger, like this, close to the nail. The index finger is placed at the intersection of the ferrule and a handle and the thumb rests on the ferrule as well. Like this. Put the full hand and arm on the table like this, from the little finger to the wrist. If you hold your little finger in the air, your hand will be shaking like this and it is normal, and we have to avoid it. So then we have support points, little finger, wrist and elbow and then our fingers are not shaking. Sometimes in my work I put a little finger like this. Because for example, I have a fresh painting here and I don't want to destroy it. So then little finger, wrist - and the fingers are not shaking. 7. Basic Elements: Preparing the Paint: Okay, let's start with the basic elements. They are only five, but you will be surprised with an amazing variety of ornaments you can create with this modest set. But first, a few more words about paint. What do we do with the paint? Make a small puddle of the pain on your palette. Or a plate. Dip the brush in the paint. And let's pull the paint on the palette like this so that all bristles of our brush is soaked in paint. The condition of the pain should be quite liquid. It's like, let's say drinking yogurt. You know, not completely water but also like liquid yogurt. So, but the belly of the brush should not be in the shape of a cocoon or bean, you know, it means you took too much paint and it's too much water in the heel. So it's necessary to wipe the excess water from the hill. Like this to dry a little bit. And to use the palette like this. The ferrule of the brush should not be dirty, it should be clean as well. And like this we can paint. 8. Basic Elements: Drop: Well now I'm going to take the grid and my brush number two, Canadian squirrel. And the first element is a drop. With a tip of the brush you touch the paper, then swipe a bit and press the heel of the brush to the paper. Like this. Let's repeat it. Touch a little bit and pull and press, pull and press. This movement needs to be practiced and remembered very well. It is important to learn how to draw drops in a different directions. For example, we did vertically and now horizontally. Drop is laying down, this same technique, pulling and pressing. And now diagonally. Use the slash line of the grid as a reference point. Like this, you can repeat all your drops one. two, three lines, for example, the full page, two pages, as you wish. Just the most important that you start to feel that you got it. And now upside down. It can be quite complicated from the beginning, but with a little practice, you will feel it is easy enough. Now, you see, that the drop is smaller. It means I don't have enough paint on my brush. I took the paint and now it looks better. So now let's do this exercise. One drop down, one drop up. And you know, then you can take the brush numbers three and repeat all these elements again with another brush. You should be able to make small elements as well as big elements with one brush. Like this, you are going to feel firstly, a behavior of your brush. And secondly, you can choose which one is most comfortable for you - number two and number three. If your brush does not print the round end of the drop, as I told you before, it means there may not be enough paint on the brush or it is not the correct brush. In this case, my advices is try to change your brush. 9. Basic Elements: Runners: The second element, small runners or stolons, you know. Short lines like this. Usually masters don't count the amount of lines. But in general, there are four, five, six lines at once. Element small runners is always a group of runners, never a single runner. And like this. What kind of mistake can be? That the end of the blade looks up. It's not correct. It should turn its "head" to the left. Like this, do you see? Ooop! Ooop, to the left, to the left. Don’t worry if you can’t do it from the first try. It's normal, we are here to practice it. 10. Basic Elements: Swirl: The third basic element is a swirl. Like this. Don't try to make it fast. In this case, speed is not our friend. The swirl can be single. It can be thin or with some thickening. All of these variations exist in the Khokhloma painting. Again. Oooop! And now we are going to repeat the same, but moving down. Don't worry if you can't do it from the first try. It's normal. Some people can do elements better in one direction and worse in another one. It's absolutely normal. Just keep on trying and practicing. But more often the Khokhloma masters use two swirls. Draw the first swirl. We start like this, as before. And the second swirl next to it, one millimeter away, very close and draw it higher crossing the first swirl. It's important to locate it higher. Pay attention to the distance between swirls in the beginning and when you continue like this. Look at this triangle. So that your swirls are at an angle, but not parallel to each other. To help yourself you can use a pencil. Masters in Khokhloma of course don't use any pencil in their work, but we are learning now and the pencil can be very useful. Just draw first your elements with the pencil and then use the paint over the pencil's sketch. 11. Basic Elements: Grass: The basic element number four is addressed. A blade of grass. Look, I'm doing this. I'm going to put a short trope, just printed press. It costs like this. And then I'm pulling the tail down and around of the end. Now let's try to do these two actions at once without interruption. Look at the top. And what did we round up the tail to the right. Let's try. If it is too difficult for you to draw the blade of grass standing, Let's put it laying down. It's easier. It's like the blade of grass is laying on its back with its belly up and continue practicing like this. The blade of grass should have a bailee. It should not be thin. If you can make such belly with one motion. Don't worry, you can correct it later easily, like I'm demonstrating now. The next line is our blade has turned to the bailee and continue to sleep. And I repeat again, if you can't make a belly with one motion, first control thin blade, and then finish drawing the belly. The last position of the blade for today will be standing. But on the contrary, Then we did it in the beginning. And they gain lag, the first one's bigger. And let's do it in one move. Because we've already trained our hand. This same position, but the tail goes to another site. And we have finished with the element grass felt today. 12. Basic Elements: Stem: The last, the fifth element is a stem. Let's look at this. It shouldn't be straight. A better comparison might be with a drawn bow. We can find these element very often in flowers, berry bush and other plants. Move the whole hand. Look at this radius. This is a correct curve. Also try to draw it down. Make a little stop in the end and round it off. Again. Move the whole hand. Whole your hand, not the fingers. Slide with your hand on the paper down. Like this. 13. Basic Elements: Summary: These are the basic elements of Khokhloma. All of them we are going to use in our "Pryanik". You need to practice basic elements as long as you can. And don't be shy if you are not perfect in the beginning, just please take a shot and send me the picture of your basic elements in the Discussions section. And I will give you my feedback. You know, sometimes doing something you feel stuck and some little advice of a teacher can change your work completely. And now one more time a few words about the general rules of Khokhloma style painting. Aim to move your whole hand and fluid motions when painting, instead of just your fingers. This will help to avoid a trembling hand and make the line firm. By Khokhloma cannons, all elements should be placed very close to each other, but not to be in contact. The pattern in Khokhloma is a wave, one element flows into another in a wave. Believe me, the slower you paint, the faster you will learn to paint Khokhloma. Don't hurry up and be patient. And in the end of this lesson, I will give you some advices how to get better result. I show you my practice sheets made some time ago to demonstrate that no one is perfect in the beginning. So please don't give up if it doesn't go perfect and easy immediately from the first try. Believe me, if you practice a few days or even a few hours, you will see what a huge difference you have between your first elements and the current ones. Repeat each element at least 20-30 times and you will see visible improvement. Another advice is, if something doesn't go well, don't be afraid to change the brush. Try different rashness, squirrel, cat, dog, I am kidding! or synthetic, big, small. Just find your brush! In the beginning, it is better to use more liquid paint. It can be watercolor or acrylic paint mixed with water. As much liquid your paint as easier you brush slides on the paper. 14. Complex Element: Bush: Now let's put all the elements we have just learned together and create the bush. But firstly, I will repeat, what do we have? It' a group of small runners, then two swirls: one is smaller and another is higher, as you remember. Like this. Ooop! A blade of grass and a drop. Okay. Perfect. And I'm going to start from a half-bush. It will be easier for you to understand the construction of these elements. Let's just draw the elements in the same order that I just repeated them. Look at this. Runners. The first is swirl is covering the runners, but not touching them. The second. Then we put a blade of grass. But pay attention, please, that the height of the grass is less than the second swirl has. And the second blade of grass is even lower. And the final point is a drop, like this. I'm going to repeat it again and then I will give you idea how to get to grips with this bush. Swirl. The second. And blades. First of all, you can and you should help yourself with a pencil in the beginning. And if we look at the shape of the bush, Well, at the moment it is only a hall of bush, but then we can see it is similar to a ball with a handle. Or I see a lollipop, for example. The runners are the handle, and swirls, Grass and drop must fit in the imaginary circle. Do you understand what I mean? Now I will prepare my "lollipop" in pencil, and then I put our basic elements into the circle. I will mark a central line additionally. I will divide the segment inside the circle into three equal parts. And let's go! Paehali! The runners, the swirls, the blades of grass and the drop. Don't forget, you must fit these elements inside the circle. Now I will show you how to draw a whole bush, not the half. I continue to use a pencil to do a sketch and we start from the fifth element, the stem. Do remember it? It is like a drawn bow. Now I will make the border in one millimeter from the stem. Very, very close. It is just to remind myself that there runners shouldn't touch the stem. Now the circle. And I mark the limit of the runners and yes, like this. And divide the line inside of the circle in three pieces. I will explain to you it again in this sketch, I marked with red color the borders of the runners and three parts inside of the circle. Then we draw the runners until the first line inside the circle and stop. That's why we divided the circle in three parts to know when to stop with the runners. And we put the rest of the elements inside the circle. Do you see? They all fit into the circle? Here I touched the runners with the first swirl, well, it's okay, but it's better to do it correctly. And we complete our bush with the lower part. For the sketch, I used brush marker. And now I am going to do the same but with the brush and paint. Just keep on watching. You know already all order of the elements. Runners, swirl, now the second one, a blade of grass. It looks nicer when a blade is crossing the previous swirl or blade. I mean crossing in the end. And drop. I forgot to draw the stem firstly. Okay, it's not a problem. And the lower part now. Remember, all elements in general must be close to each other, but not in contact at the base. Later they can cross as well, as we can see in swirls and grass, as I said before. Blades of grass and drop. Ok, it's finished. This is the bush and very frequent element. I will show you a second time quickly. Okay. Here is the result, of our work with the bush today. And I would like to add a few words about the most common mistakes as well. Okay, a mistake number one. The stem, the bow, is bent too much. Do you see? Too high? It should be like this. Just a little bit bent. And why not? Why is it mistake? Because when you bend the stem too much, your upper elements will be fine. They will have a lot of space and you will put them a lot. But for the lower elements the space will be limited. They will be short, small, and the whole bush looks unproportional. Mistake number two. You make a correct stem. Okay. Then runners are also correct. And suddenly instead of draw a swirl over the runners, you put it aside. And the next swirl is laying down as well. This is very often mistake, please don't do it. Number three, again, a stem. Runners. Everything goes well. And, oops. Two swirls are on the same level. It doesn't look nice because at the end your bush will not have a round shape as it is supposed to be. The correct position of the seconds swirl is here. Like this our elements fit into the circle. Like this. The last of the most often mistakes. We put the stem, runners, swirls. Perfect. And then you put grass - one, two, three blades. Oh no, no, it's enough. And finally you got a shape of a cucumber instead of a lollipop. This is the mistake. Keep the shape of a circle. That's why I ask you to use a pencil in the beginning until your hand and your eyes get used to this proportions. That's it. I would like to show you what the huge variety of bushes you can find in the real art works of Khokhloma. For example. On this work look at this curl. We can see here runners, swirl, grass, another swirl, grass, grass and drop. And here I used a swirl instead of a stem and then I put bush's elements on it. Another grass, grass, runners, swirl, swirl and grass. And I continued with a stem and it is like a wave, it goes into another element with some blades of grass on it, it looks quite pretty, I think. And this is a bush. If we look at another "Pryanik", here is even more strange, more far from an original bush, but this is also still bush. Instead of, instead of stem, let's say, here is the element berries. It looks very nice, yes? And instead of little grass here, I put drops and then it's like drops, drops, swirl. Here, a little grass like additional elements. Big grass, big grass, swirl. And here big grass, but in small size and drop as well. So you can do different sizes, different elements. Swirls are huge, for example, and big grass is small here. Well, another "Pryanik". This is a bush as well. It looks strange and so far from the original bush, but we can see all elements of the bush here. The grass, swirl, swirl, and all elements. Just on the left side, for example, it is missing a swirl, but why not? It was my imagination at the moment. And here, there is an absolutely another pattern, as you see, this is a strawberries' pattern, classical for Khokhloma, with leaves and a lot of grass. But it's full of bushes as you can see. I don't know if you can see because of reflection of varnish. And look at this, this is bush, half-bush, half, half. Here, yes, like a full bush. Here bush, half, bush, bush, half-bush. Do you see how it can be different. So it's just a question of your imagination. Now when you know all basic elements, you can do different varieties of bushes as well, how you feel. Just it should be your feeling of harmony, of proportions and the rest is your imagination. 15. Outline of the "Pryanik": This lesson will be about creating outline of our brandy. Please prepare sheet of copy paper, A4, ruler and a pencil, a compass, and an eraser. And let's target the composition Brian Mick, our ration Mandela, is a kind of geometrical ornament. Here, clear measurements and construction of composition are important. Since the patent has four repos, it means it will be repeated four times small deviation I allowed in each of the four rapporteurs. But the proportion in the harmony of the composition must be maintained. Otherwise, we will intuitively feel a disorder disharmony in the composition. Please find the center of your sheet of paper. Now let's take a compass and measure 10 centimeters or approximately four inches. If you don't have a compass, please use a plate or a bowl. That bowl that can feed on the piece of paper. So we do the circle. Now we measure a half centimeter less 0.2 inches, let say, to do another circle inside. Don't worry, I will repeat all measurements a bit later. So, and another small circle inside three centimeters, or 1.2 inches. And the last so-called smaller, two centimeters, approximately 0.8 inches. Well done. We've finished with this telcos. And now find the intersection points of the circle and our lines, horizontal and vertical lines. And we need to construct a square, a quadrate like this. Now, divide each side of square in health like this. So we will be able to draw a diagonal lines at an angle of 45 degrees. Here is our outline. The black lines we are going to paint over and the blue lines are supporting lines so that we can feel that dimensions, the borders of the LMS, we need them for your reference point. Now, I'm going to draw elements. We start with the blades of grass. Please draw eight blades of grass and little drops in between. The grass here will be straight without rounding and it doesn't go beyond the smallest circle. In each corner of the square, we will draw two blades of grass. These semi-circles will feel with the paint completely. Look at our future pedantic. Look at the center, how it looks and paint. Now, let's draw swirls. We will start with a beak, one, which is located in the diagonal line. But first, let's mark the border of all these swirls. I'm going to measure with my compass eight centimeters or 3.15 inches, and just put the mark. How long will be my swirl? Where to stop? Let say. Let's repeat this action four times. Because we will have four beaks, hurls. And another mark, I would like to put four small swirls between these big ones. Here. You can see it's six centimeters or 2.4 inches. We make small marks on the horizontal and vertical lines. Look at the outline again. Do you see this marks, blue marks, eight centimeters and six centimeters. These will be the borders of this girls. Okay. Let's start with the big arrow on the diagonal line. Just joy it until the mark on the top. And on the right side, the limit is the next vertical line. This rural should feed into this imaginary triangle. So it is very easy as you can see. And now small sperm also from circle in the center until the marks six centimeters. This most fertile takes approximately half of the imaginary triangle. And the second half is for the beak blade. Also until the line. Look at it. Such a giant blade of grass. Between this most fertile and the diamond blade, I'm going to put another blade of grass, a big drop, and the small drop at the base of beaks virtual. I want to put drops, but they're curved a little bit. It is more decorated and runners on the left side, blades of grass. It would be more interesting in this blades will be not the same size, but from the biggest to the smallest. Maybe instead of some blades will be drops. We will see later. After all, painting is a creative process and not copying a template exactly. We are making the outline to estimate the location of the elements and see the general appearance of our future planning. Now, let's go to a spam. Do remember I told you about the wave in Haha. Look at the movement of this curls, swirls and all this line. The painting is rounded off every time. No straight lines at all, except this square in the center. I will explain to you later in the lesson about symbolism or the straight line means and why Allah has a square in the center. So we put here on the stem, the blades of grass and the runners. Now, I will repeat it three more times. Do the opposite side from the big spherical, I will put a little curl. Remember, with this small curls, don't go out of the circle. Out of the inner circle. Don't cross this line. Everything should feed into the circle with the radius 9.5 centimeters. And that's it. Our outline is ready. Let's take another look at the final version of our pedantic, how it will look in paint on the golden background on that paper. Am on a wooden surface. 16. Your "Pryanik": Red Stage: My congratulations! We arrive at the moment when we are ready to paint our Pryanik. I have here a prepared background with a golden acrylic paint. And I already put the general lines with a pencil. As you already know all basic elements, I'm not going to stop and concentrate your attention on the technique of painting. Let's do it like this: I am showing to you each element once slowly and the rest will be faster. Because now it is more important to understand the location of the elements inside of the circle. I mean, where to paint the elements, instead of how to paint these elements. And I'm taking my brush, squirrel brush number two. And I'm going to start with a blade of grass. Don't round at the end this blade, it will be completely straight, like this. I'm going to show you again faster, like this. Now we change the brush. If you have the second one, we take the black paint, as well the brush number two, squirrel. And we're going to put drops between these blades. Drops are smaller than blades, approximately the half of the blade and let's put the drops. You can correct them if you cannot do it from the first try. And now the borders. Now we are going to make a square in the middle and semi-circles. Try to do these lines very thin. If you have any problem or your hand is shaking or something like this, don't worry, just use a liner, you know, the marker. Because anyway, we need to color inside the semi-circles. So it's not a problem, just usual liner, like this, and it will be perfect. I'm taking and again red paint, another brush and dip in red paint. Brush is still number two. And we are going to draw swirls, the big swirls. At each side will be one at the moment. Look at this. Pulling-pulling until the mark that we did with a pencil, 8 cm from the center. Don't forget the borders of the swirl. You can prepare the swirl with a pencil as well, just don't press too much to the pencil, just make some marks. And it will help you a lot. And between big swirls, we are going to put small swirl. Look at my painting now, I did this the sketching line by pencil of the small swirl. To help myself to understand the location of the swirl, you can do the same. You can correct the shape, of course, of the swirl. And the rest I am going to do without pencil. If you feel proportions, you don't need the help of a pencil, of course, but I recommend you to help to yourself. The next element is a big blade of grass. It's really big, look at this. Ooop! And round it off in the end, like this. It will be also more or less the level of 8 cm line, like a big swirl. So it's easy, you know where to stop with your blade. 17. Your "Pryanik": Black Stage: Now I'm going to squirrel brush number three with a black paint. You can see the difference, number two and number three. If you don't have bigger brush, don't worry, just continue with the same brush. Just at the moment for me it's more comfortable to take the bigger brush to do the big drops. They are not straight drops, but with a curve a little bit, you know, look how I am doing this. You just curve it a little bit. Just if you need to practice on another paper aside a little bit. But it's not complicated, believed me. And in the rest of this space I would like to put runners 5, 6, 4 - it's up to you. Just look at your "Pryanik" how much space do you have, it is just to use this space. Another side of swirl. We are going to put usual blades of grass as well. You know these elements. Just try to do them in different sizes. Can you see, the first is bigger, the second and a little bit smaller, and the third is more small. You can put 3-4, even 2 if you don't have space and 2-3 drops also different size, because it looks nicer. If you cannot, put the same size, it's not appropriate. Okay. I already like my "Pryanik". It starts to be nicer and nicer. So now the turn of stems. Again, it can be a little bit difficult to put a straight line, thin line. So help yourself with a pencil, as you see now, I put the line first with the pencil and then with the paint. Here is without the pencil. But again, if you don't have enough paint on your brush, take more paint and correct your line. Do you remember I told you that you can also use cotton buds to correct your painting. If you have background, acrylic background, or you are painting, for example, in the wooden box and it has varnish before to paint, then you can correct. So again, brush number three, because now I'm going to do the elements bigger - a big blade of grass. To the right. To correct a little bit, yes. A big drop inside. I need to correct as well, and small drop on the left side. Looks nice, I think. Yes? Let's repeat three more times. Okay. Here I'm going to put runners like the beginning of a bush and blades of grass, as well different sizes, because they just don't fit in the same size. Let's come back to the middle of the circle and decorate corners of a square, because it looks quite empty and I want to fill in these corners. Again, it's just two blades of grass. They are quite thick, small, but you can put thin blades just to make a little bit balanced between black and red. Do you understand it's like not enough, I feel not enough red color in the middle. So we come back to our stems and doing blades of grass. I'm doing the same size. Just in the end of the stem you can put blades smaller like in nature. You know what I mean. In the end they are going smaller and smaller. One in the middle in the end. And another side of stem will be with runners. It looks more interesting and to say the truth, we don't have enough space for grass on this side and I decided to put runners. I would like to add little swirls here close to the edge of circle. I'm going to repeat slowly. Additionally, I would like to add these curls, black small curls. I will explain later why, when we are going to speak about the symbolism, Slavic symbolism of Khokhloma. 18. Your "Pryanik": Decoration: Well, our "Pryanik" is almost done. Look at this, how's beautiful, isn't it? We are going to decorate now with dots. This is the last declaration of our "Pryanik". I'm going to show you how I use cotton buds. Just dip in paint the cotton bud, like this, and then you can put dots. It depends on your paint, but I'm going to dip the bud in the paint every time when I need to put one dot. If you put a dot and you see that it's not enough paint, it's not covered very well with the paint just put additionally, correct it. Here I'm going to put a few, group of dots, like this, To prepare cotton bud I dip my fingers and scroll through my fingers to avoid this "hair", you know, this "hair" sticking out. I took the new cotton bud, because I'm going to change the color and use now red color, red paint. And now let's make a balance of red and black and put a little bit red dots. Here, I would like to do the series of red dots as well, the group. And here, in the middle of the circle, at the base of the big swirl, I would like to put more red color. Now I'm going to show you one trick. How to make dots of different sizes. I'm taking a brush and I'm going to use a handle of the brush. It's better to use the plastic handle, because if you are going to take a brush with a wooden handle, wood is going to absorb the liquid, it is not good. So then take just a brush with the plastic handle, dip in the paint, and start to make dots, but not dip anymore, just dip once and put the dots and every next dot will be smaller and smaller. This is the trick. And it looks very interesting. This is my opinion. You know, I still feel that it's too dark in the middle of this circle, too much black color. And I feel to put a little bit red blades, like these. It's optional, but this is just my feeling of the balance of black and red. And a final touch - a boarding! Do you remember we marked the border, half of centimeter from the big circle? Yes. And now we're going to use this line to help us. We are making semi-circles like these and later we are going to color inside. Now fill in these semi-circles with red paint inside and our boarding will be ready. Well done!!! What a pretty "Pryanik"! It's like the sun. If you use the golden background, it's shining and I find it really beautiful, what do you think? Let's add our personal initials. I always do it. You can add also the date. Just to remember when you did your first "Pryanik". Well guys, my congratulations to you, and I'm really proud of you, because now in front of you you can see you real handmade art work in Khokhloma style! In a very old Russian folk art that has roots of icon painting and icon painting took it from Byzantine art. So can you imagine what a fantastic thing you did? And not so many people in the world know this technique, know how to do it, how to paint it. So be proud of yourself as well. You did fantastic work! 19. Symbolism in Khokhloma: Now, as I promised, we are going to speak about the symbolism of Khokhloma painting. In old Russia Khokhloma tableware wasn't just for serving food, but also it was a symbol of protection of a house and a family. Slavic ornaments are full of symbolism and we can see it everywhere in old Russia; on clothes, tablecloths and towels, furniture, tableware, accessories. The symbolism was important. For example, according to the ornaments of the clothes, it was possible to determine if a woman is a marriageable or already married, without children or already has, for example, three children. So on the bottom of the plates, dishes, bowls Khokhloma masters painted composition "Pryanik" and symbols of this composition reflected the understanding of ancient Slavs of the structure of the Universe. The full Universe was in this circle. First of all, let's speak about the symbolism of color. According to ancient Slavic people, red color is beauty, health. In Russian language a word "beautiful" - "krasiviy" comes from "red" - "krasniy". In old Russia, wedding clothes, for example, had red color. Black color is a color of the Absolute. It is associated with an eternity, infinity, depth, the very embodiment of the Universe. But also it is a color of sadness, sorrow, poor harvest, because life is impossible without such moments. Now, let's have a look at our "Pryanik". In the center we can see a square. A queries is a field. Any straight line represents a ground. This square is not empty, it means the field is sown. The element "blade of grass" is a sprout, a seedling. The element drop is a hole where we put a seed and dots are seeds. So we can see in the center a seed, then holes to put the seeds and blades are sprouts, seedlings. Our field is sown, it means we are waiting for a good harvest. Black semi-circles symbolize the sun at sunrise. This is the beginning of a new day, any beginnings in general. The red swirls of our "Pryanik" are roots. Big swirls, big roots mean stability, health, supports of the family in a figurative way. And in a direct meaning, these are strong roots of plants. It means a good crop will arrive. In order for the seed to sprout we need all elements: water, wind, earth and fire. Earth and Sun we already have seen in the center of our "Pryanik". Now, look at the small black curls. They are the wind, wind flows. Without wind, clouds can not move and bring water, bring rain. And where are the clouds in our composition? What do you think? The red boarding, these small red waves are clouds filled with water. So we have four elements, but something is missing, isn't it? I didn't tell you anything about the Khokhloma element "runners". "Runners" is a grove. The grove was a holy place for the ancient Slavs. They didn't cut down trees and didn't gather mushrooms and berries there. People went to the grove to perform rituals and recharge their energy. So we can say it is a symbol of spiritual life and the fifth element. One more moment would like to mark. For the balance of the Universe, the harmony of the male and female energy, like Yin and Yang, is necessary. That's why in the "Pryanik" composition, you could find the swirls painted clockwise and anticlockwise. All the elements arranged clockwise have the masculine principle, spiritual leadership. And counterclockwise elements are feminine signs, the material, sensual side of our life. For example, people believed that amulets with feminine symbols helped to soften the character of a brutal man. Well, now you know what kind of wishes you can send to your friends and family members through the Khokhloma ornaments. 20. Final Words: Guys, I really appreciate you did this way with me. Thank you very much. But don't forget to upload your final project to the Project Gallery. And please remember, materials matter, especially brushes. I know I told you already 100 times "brush, brush, brush, brush", but it's true. So then the basic elements are also important, because it is a basis not only for Khokhloma painting, but also for many other Russian styles. And if you would like to try, for example, and another Russian style like Mezen, Zhostovo and something else - you are prepared, because they also use these basic elements. And who knows, maybe Khokhloma will be the beginning of your journey to amazing world of Russian culture, or maybe even to Russia. The other thing that I wanted to say that Khokhloma gives us an absolute freedom of imagination. You can create a lot of patterns and different things with this basic elements. But keep in mind the canons and rules of Khokhloma. And the last thing, as I told you before, the Khokhloma motifs are everywhere. And now, when you know what it is, you will start to see and recognize this pattern around you. And I really hope that you are going to use this new knowledge and, who knows, maybe create something interesting. So I wish you good luck, and I really hope to see you soon at my next class. Poka-poka. Bye-bye.