Abstract Art with a Twist: Paint a Craft in the Style of Klimt | Nicole Arnold | Skillshare

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Abstract Art with a Twist: Paint a Craft in the Style of Klimt

teacher avatar Nicole Arnold, Wild about Art

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

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Getting Started: Supplies


    • 3.

      Let's Paint: Step 1


    • 4.

      Let's Paint: Step 2


    • 5.

      Let's Paint: Step 3


    • 6.

      Bonus Craft Project


    • 7.

      Final Thoughts


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About This Class

Abstract Art with a Twist: Craft in the Style of Klimt

Learn to paint in the style of the modern twentieth century masters.  

Class Description

Painting abstract art is all about letting go and having fun.  Learn how to plan bold designs in glittering colors like Gustav Klimt, the beloved painter of "The Kiss" and the portrait of Adele Bloch Bauer (from the movie "Woman in Gold").  

We will have fun while immersing ourselves in a craft activity that ignites our imaginations and pushes the boundaries of our creativity.  No prior painting experience is needed - all levels are welcome.

Meet Your Teacher

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Nicole Arnold

Wild about Art


Nicole is an artist and children's book illustrator who loves all types of art.  As a teaching artist, Nicole focuses on opening minds to make room for unexpected creativity.

Read more about her DIY projects, Art-o-mat adventures, and book recommendations on her blog, blog.nicolettaarnolfini.com, and follow her on Instagram and Twitter to enjoy her recent work.

Nicole's classes appeal to students who are looking to submerge themselves in a world of colorful, bold design, creative fearlessness and the wonders of the natural world.

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Level: Beginner

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1. Intro: At the turn of the 20th century, an artist named Gustave Clint began painting in a way no one had seen before. His new style defied explanation. He painted faithful representations of portrait. It's with fanciful combinations of glittering patterns and embellishments that verged on the abstract. In this class, we will focus on the shimmering metallic designs that clipped, incorporated into his work, will study clips painting the kiss and apply his geometric designs as inspiration for work . The twist part of the class is the challenge of working on woodcraft rather than working on canvas. Wood crafts are exciting services for your home or studio, but they come with an unpredictability, and we'll come for that wood, grain and paint application and various challenges together. I love Clint's richly ornamental style because it calls out for us to touch it, to exist in his luxurious and mesmerizing world. Come join us by enrolling in this class so that you, too, can have a place in the iconic and glittering place that cleanses created 2. Getting Started: Supplies: Let's go over the supplies that you'll need in this clip class. You'll notice I have his reference material, a book that has the kiss in it. I'll do the male side of the painting that has the geometric pattern, but I'll translate that over to this wooden arrow. So look for a wood craft at your local hobby store or your arts and crafts store. Make sure that you have your sketchbook handy so that each day you can work out your designs and your color choices. I will use liquid text paints, especially the iridescent colors like copper, gold, silver. You can use craft paints. You can use any paints that work on. Would all of them were flat nicely with this design? I also have some red to do some detail work, and I will use iridescent white, soft body liquid Tex to do some initial layers. Ah, he's a lot of gold, and you guys know that I always use my pasta pins, probably for some detail work, at least the black ones. So also keep your palate hanzee and a water receptacle in some paper towels. Here are a couple of little bird houses that I have already double primes with some iridescent white. That's the liquid tax acrylic painting. We're gonna use some of the female pattern, which is the circular pattern on these just for fun, so you can see some other things to do with this project. Here is a role birdhouse that you can find at your local craft store or at your local art supply store. Don't forget the crile unfinished that you're going to need to apply at the very end that prevents paint, shipping and anything that happens when your artwork falls on the floor, for instance, and I wanted to talk to you about paintbrushes. For this work, we will need to work pretty small, so make sure that you have some excellent acrylic paint brushes that air small in nature. And he's the larger brushes to apply a lot of color at the beginning, especially those first couple coats of the iridescent white or the gold or whatever you want your background color to be. After you get your background colors on in a future video, you will see that I've done some pencil work on top of the initial layers. Use the lightest pencil you have. I definitely recommend a to h. Now let's get painting. Thanks so much for being part of this class. I can't wait to see what projects you guys have in store for us. Remember to post to your project section. 3. Let's Paint: Step 1: Hello, modern art masters and welcome to our first painting video. I've spent up the progress of the video a bit. This is when we finally get into the paint and I am using my white liquid tex iridescent and this is not a heavy buddy. This is actually the soft body. It goes on ice cream. Smooth. So really, take the time to enjoy this and allow yourself to find the freedom here of opening up and just painting on this what I call a canvas. But it's actually would, isn't it? So you're gonna want to put your topcoat here on the front and on the sides. Make sure you give it a good slathering, and you're probably noticing from my painting that you can see some transparency here. It's not absolutely transparent, but this pain is also not completely opaque. Before we have our next video, I will have painted a second layer on here. Now, if you don't want to buy the very expensive high dollar liquid Tex paints, I understand. So another alternative that you can pursue is to find a Jess oh, or just a cheaper white paint to put underneath. That's absolutely fine to use that as a primer layer. Basically for your arrow. The euro has consistency that is extremely smooth on top. It doesn't have the tooth quite like the way we're used to on a canvas or even a couple layers of gesso primer. Make sure that you try to cover up every bit that you can. After this, you will apply with the lightest pencil that you have your design on top after you've let your 1st 2 coats off this under layer dry. So by this time you have fully committed to whatever color your background is. I have chosen my background color to be this iridescent white. I have chosen that because I am going to put this pretty pattern on top from the male part of the kiss. You may choose to do a gold, or you may choose a completely different color scheme. Still, based on the designs of clamped or another artist, this class has a lot of freedom associated with it. I've just want you to see what I'm doing so you can follow along with me if you like. Thanks so much, and I'll see it the next video 4. Let's Paint: Step 2: welcome modern art masters to our step to video. In this video, I have sped up our progress considerably, and that way you can see me go over lots of things in a short amount of time. One of the things that you'll notice right away is that I have already blocked in my design on the arrow so you'll see the iridescent white. But you will also see the two H pencil markings that I have on the arrow. This is my design, and I'm starting with a rather large brush, a medium large brush to block in all of the black parts of my arrow. You do not have to start with the darkest part of your design. Many artists prefer toe work light to dark, but remember that acrylics can paint over top of former layers. So I've decided to denote my larger black areas first, for a couple reasons. One. It helps me set the design in my mind and really see if it's working. The second reason I've decided to start with black is I want to do the gold and the silver and the copper. Later on this, we're going to be in increasingly smaller sizes, the blocks and geometric designs on the Aero. You know, at this point, I am changing over to my gold. This is my iridescent liquid tex heavy body gold. And you will notice that it is not going on as smooth as my iridescent white did in earlier layers. The white was a soft body, and it's going to apply itself very smoothly and very quickly over the surface. The heavy body, acrylic paints do not do that, and you can really build them up. And you can make some serious texture on the surface of your painting. I'm making a little bit of a texture. You can really add a lot of death here if you want to. You can come back and do future layers that are even heavier than the one that I'm doing now. So really, just use your imagination here and let go. If you're using the heavy body paints, remember to have an arsenal of smaller brushes around you. And remember at the beginning I talked about how I was going to start with the larger blood in places of my painting, and then I'm going to get smaller and smaller so you see that I've done that? I'm changing out my smaller brushes quickly. I'm washing them out a little bit in the water. I will tell you that the metallic colors tend to hold the paint, and the brush bristles a little more stubbornly than regular acrylic paint. This means that you can quickly change out brushes without losing them. You can go back at the end and wash them out with some soap. Or you can just put them in your water receptacle and keep picking up a new brush. That's what I've chosen to do to show you how to go smaller and smaller and do more detail work. Now when I say that you're doing a little bit of detail work here, you're really still blocking in the big parts. I don't want you to get discouraged about the fact that this is not the end product of your projects at this point. Remember, you have to block in, and you are going to make some mistakes. You're going. Teoh have hard edges all throughout this design, so you're gonna have hard edges that spill over onto your contrasting color. You'll notice that at times it looks as if my lines are not completely even. They're not completely symmetrical, and I'm going to have to go back in a future step and fix that. I will cover how to make up for those mistakes in the future step. So please don't give yourself extra pressure in this step that things have to be perfect. They do not. You are only blocking in what you're going to finish later. I have used nail my silver paint, my copper paint and my gold paint to put in some detail work. In the next step, I'm going to go in with my Posca markers on top of this liquid Tex acrylic and make some changes to help out this design. Be more exact and more detailed in its symmetry and its geometry. I'll see you on the next video. 5. Let's Paint: Step 3: welcome modern art masters to this step of our project. This is our intense detail. Step step three of Let's Paint. This is when you will spend a lot of time on this project again. I have sped up this video just for your convenience so that you can see me dio a lot of things at one time while I'm talking to you, I want you to understand that even though we're getting into more detail work, remember to be gentle with yourself and your expectations. I'm going to start off with my Posca markers. You can do that, or you can use another paint marker, or you can use your very small brushes. But this is when we're really breaking out the detail work, so you will need the smallest brushes that you have in addition to any paint markers that you want to use. I'm going to make mistakes in this video, and I will try to point those out to you and talk about how I'm going to rectify those later on. One of the things that I'm using a lot in this video is a straight edge, and this ruler is a friend and a foe. The ruler helps me create very hard edges, which I need to complete this geometric design. But it also is starting to smear in places you're going to see where ice near the black paint on the surface of the arrow, and I need to clean that up later on. One of the things that I will dio off camera is I will go in with white paint on top and finish these edges with white paint. But I will most certainly not do that nail, because now, if I use the white paint, it would smudge up against the black paints and my black paint. Even though I'm using a paint marker and my underlying paint is completely dry. I am disturbing that under layer, and I have an active wet paint marker right nail so I can't mix the white right nail unless I really want to ruin my design, says stick with what you're doing, continue to block in little bits at a time and be patient with yourself knowing that this step is going to take more time. One of the challenges that I'm experiencing is the wood grain off the arrow now in prep prior videos in prior classes. I have worked on canvas and canvases. Extremely manageable and predictable as a surface would, however, is not. It appears smooth in its first layer, and then eventually you're going to start running into wood grain, an abutment above the surface off the texture of would. Also, if you are a more textured artist and you like to add layers to your paint to give it depth , then you are going to run into that also. So when you're doing a very hard edged look design, then you are going to have to grapple with these issues. I decided to not worry about this too much, knowing that later on I can go in with a two D perspective and fix things with E adjacent gold or the adjacent white or whatever my adjacent color is. No, I want to talk to you about why I've decided to start using my silver Posca marker. I looked back at some of the history of Clint, and in one of the books that I've listed as a resource for this class, I learned that Clem's visited a basilica in Italy in Ravenna called the Basilica of Sant Vettel, and this was around 1900. This was a watershed year four clamped. He decided at this point to start painting in the medieval style and to make his image is more iconic. And one of the first portrait's that we have after this period is the famous portrait of Adele Bloch Bauer, which is the woman in Gold, the very famous painting so you can see a definite change in his style to incorporate this medieval mosaic iconography into his work. I thought that one way to help communicate that in this arrow was for me to use a silver marker. Or you could use silver paint to outline the different parts of his painting. Now Clint's did not necessarily do this in the kiss, and you can use your imagination Tiu to do what you want to accomplish in your own painting . I did this to incorporate a little bit of a Louis comfort Tiffany style and a little bit of a stained glass style, so I'm bringing in that iconography from the Middle Ages. That cathedral look into this work to make it a little bit more shimmering and glittery, and to provide an echo to the accent color of the silver. I thought that would be a nice touch to put into this design and to make it a little less of a craft and a little bit more off a religious ornaments. Almost, I want to say one last time that remember, at the end of the step, things do not have to be perfect. Be patient with yourself, don't give up and have confidence in yourself that things will work out in the end. 6. Bonus Craft Project: modern art masters. Thanks for joining me for this bonus project video. This is completely optional. You do not have to do an extra project for this class. But if you wanted Teoh, I just wanted to show you hell to go about doing a completely different design for the aero part of this class. I focused on the male portion which is very 90 degrees. It's very perpendicular, lots of rectangular and square shapes over on that side of the painting. The reference work also has many curves and circles and what I would consider more feminine shapes and that I have incorporated into the small birdhouse. You don't have to use a birdhouse. You can use a different woodcraft. I want to talk you through some of the changes that I made in this smaller project that are very different from what I did in the arrow. I started out with the same background, which is the iridescent white. But my color choices from their changed over on the arrow. Remember, I used metallic silver, metallic gold, metallic copper, the iridescent white and a black on this. I have completely rejected the use of black and instead and focusing on the other similar colors. With the exception of copper, I'm not using copper in this project. Instead, I've chosen to stick with the gold and the silver, and I've added red along with a white background. I've actually decided to tone up my colors a little bit on this smaller project. But instead of using the gold, I am using a very bright yellow. I'm finding that with the smaller format of this birdhouse, I like the brighter colors. And the fact that I'm not using the metallic is not seeming to detract overall from the experience of the project. I'm also going to use red, which I havent used before, And I'm using that as an accent color in this project just to tone it up again and to give it a little bit more personality and punch for its very small size. I hope that you, too, confined a small woodcraft at your local craft store and incorporate some of these designs in it just for practice. If for absolutely nothing else, I wanted to do something different from the hard edges and the perpendicular edges of the geometric forms on the male side. I wanted to try my hand on the wood grain with the really smooth and circular forms, you can see that I've chosen to replicate these forms and to change them a little bit. I've used s curves throughout the birdhouse on the back, on the sides. I've used the swirls on top and in the front. I've added some fund red dots just to give it a little punch and color. And I've also put the the triangles at the back. The point of this project is just a let loose, Have fun into have a little bit more practice. You can certainly accomplish this in your sketchbook prior to doing your final project. Thanks so much for watching. 7. Final Thoughts: thanks so much for being a part of this class. I want to remind you for final steps that when your project is dry, you can go back with your adjacent colors and make final changes. So use the gold to go back and tame some spots of black that came over and tame those last edges and then finally spray your entire project. With your finish, you can use a Cry Island finish that is glossy, or you can use a much patch finish that is pearlescent. Thanks so much for being a part of this class. I look forward to teaching you in future classes. If you enjoyed this class, please give it a thumb's up recommendation.