What colors are prevailing - tonal or local, warm or cold? First consider the size of the painting. The more impressive the subject, the higher the emotions it appeals to, the bigger it is. Religious, mythological paintings are often huge - their massive energy makes you shiver. It is pretty understandable with figurative paintings like Rafael's "The Sistine Madonna", and more subtle with color field paintings of Mark Rothko. People are often overwhelmed with religious tremor in the presence of his artwork, and the size factors in. Also, the subject often calls for larger canvases - battle scenes need space and cannot be fitted into a smaller painting, while some subjects will get lost unless depicted in a smaller size. How warm does it have to be in order to paint your home? For most paints it typically has to be 37 degrees or warmer in order to paint the exterior of your house. Now if you are painting two coats of paint on your house and it is 55 degrees or cooler for the day, it is a good idea to paint the first coat one day and apply the second coat the day after. If you live in a really dry climate, like Denver, and your painting in the summer months, you can defiantly apply two coats in one day. However, the more humid climates in the south, it is still recommended to paint only one coat per day.
The purpose of this article is to take the mystery out of the process of painting. This article is only written to get you started. I'll write more detailed techniques later. But this article will set you on your way to experimenting and having fun with paint. Ultimately it's like anything in this world. Before you have the knowledge, it's complicated. But once you have it, it's easy! Knowledge is power, and this phenomenon definitely applies to painting. The technical aspects are the easy part. Anyone can do it. You ultimately could be as capable as Monet with practice. We humans can do whatever we decide to do! Deciding WHAT to paint is the hard part. It takes discipline and a singularly focused desire to create one painting after another. For whatever reason, I loved it the minute I started. And I never looked back. I love it today as much as I did over 16 years ago. I never have "writer's block" either as to what to paint. I just paint from my experiences in life. So don't think too hard on it. Paint that apple sitting on the table, or paint the tree in your own back yard, paint your girlfriend in an unusual way. But paint something that means something to you, that's all that matters. Make it funky, make it interesting. If it's abstract, remember that abstract art has long been the most desirable. It's an expression of the individual, make it unique. For those who want realism, take a picture. What's amazing is that once you do it, you realize it's the ultimate escape into happiness. Suddenly you forget your problems for that period of time. You have control, and no one can take it away from you once you are skilled at painting. The process is addicting. But like anything, you must START! And once you do, look out....you'll be hooked. In symbolism you do need to look for the hidden meaning, and it's absolutely pointless in pop art, op art, art nouveau or hyperrealism. Each style and genre sets forth its requirements, so brush up on the movement the artist belongs to before you proceed. TEMPERATURE OF COLOR. Colors have temperature, referred to as warm or cool. In painting, reds, yellows and oranges are referred to as warm colors and blues, violets and greens are referred to as cool colors. One of the biggest lessons you will ever learn about color temperature though, is that the appearance of color can change drastically depending on its surroundings. For instance, a certain yellow would appear much hotter if it were surrounded by a violet then say an orange. Another important lesson in color temperature: Warm colors will advance in a painting and cool colors recede. Step four: the key to a finished looking painting is to build it just like a house...and by that I mean layers. Paint it in the reverse order in which the eye sees it to make it three-dimensional. By this I mean paint what's farthest from the eye first, and build layer upon layer towards the eye. In other words, do the background first because it should be the farthest from the eye, then add the objects on top of that, and then add the shadows to complete the look. Ultimately it's common sense. If you paint a bowl of fruit, the bowl and fruit need to sit on top of that background, much as it would in real life.