Image result for drawing objects in white box

Seeing tone takes practice. Set up  a few objects in a box. Spray paint the entire box and content white. Place a lamp light higher then the box. Look at how the light falls on all the objects in the box  and creates shadows.  Draw the shapes of the objects using 2B pencil. Keep in mind where is the cast shadow. This  will help you to create the 3D shape. Then add in the shadows of the shapes.

By doing this exercise will help you to learn how tone creates three dimensional shapes.

Image result for drawing objects in white box

Working Art


Line & Contour

The placement of strong lines is one of the most important skills one can learn as an artist. Grounding your subject in space and place them accurately within your design. Composition is very important.

Structural Drawing

Training your eye to see perspective more accurately working with geometric shapes.

The Plumb Line

The plumb-lines help us to place our landmarks and proportions, of the figure or landscape we are looking at, into its correct placement on our paper.


Becoming more comfortable with various materials, will help you gain more control over the value ranges in your drawings. Practicing drawing a range of values using charcoal, ink and more will aid you in capturing shadows, highlights and transitional areas.


Form is one of the most challenging elements to capture accurately in drawing. Blocking in forms of all shapes, analyzing light and shadow defining each item.

Working on a Toned Ground

Explore new value-building skills with toned ground. Tone papers or just adding tone to your white paper before drawing. Play with values from lightest lights and darkest darks creating a range of value with tone.

Color Media

Exploring the use of color in your drawings adding subtle color to your work with different mediums by blending, shading and working with value colored pencils, watercolor-based media and more.


Light and Shadow


Drawing expressive communication using shape, such as squares, circles and triangles with volume through form into realistic three-dimensional cube, sphere and cone objects. Through drawing exercises and practicing this method 2D and 3 D will help you master this technique.
Create a three-value tone key for light, middle and dark values to help identify shape, light, and shadow. Block in the composition, and use glazes of color to play with light and shadow. This will teach you to realistically capture reflections, bouncing light, various shadow and unique color combinations to help you work come alive.

Poland rain

Drawing Habits to Develop


1. Practice does make perfect!
(A) prioritize the goal of learning how to draw
(B) schedule time to draw
(C) Make it a routine
(D) Skill develops through consistent practice

2. Draw from life
(A) direct observation a way to improve
(B) carry a sketchbook and sketch anywhere you go
(C) develop a consistent habit of working from life

3. Get feedback
(A) connect with other working artists

More About Mixing Color

Cathedral in Milan

Start painting with a limited palette of colors, I suggest two colors so you see how they differ. The knowledge you obtain, will aid you in future painting issues.
There are very specific reasons why artist will use certain colors in their palettes. When painting outdoors compare to painting in the studio your palette will change.
Some artist/teachers suggest you use their palettes. I suggest by doing the above and learning what the color actually does is definitely more important.
By mixing colors, you will create harmony. Always remember color and the different values of that particular color is important.
Some artists make a point of jolting down color combinations they have mixed and reuse them through their painting.
As you continue learning, keep these simple ideas in mind they will help strengthen your mixing skills.

Working On Location

children study

When I am painting on location I always look for an interesting subject, also a shaded area. Remember you do not need all of your watercolor gear. More than likely you will be painting spontaneous studies. You just need a few basic watercolor tubes, pen, 1 sketch pad, 2 brush sizes and watercolor block. I like taking watercolor block size 9 by 12 or 11 by 14 inches.
Take the time to study your subject. Plan to work quickly.
I work number of studies and use them to paint my finish work. The painting example is a work in progress. I drew many children from different parts of the world and create composition
Always take your camera for references. Oh passport!

Working With Watercolors

Radio City 1

When choosing watercolor paint just start with a few tubes. My reason is you need to learn about color mixing and how they interact with other colors. By just buying ready-made hues you are limiting yourself. I would just buy Indian yellow, ultramarine blue, alizarin crimson, umber, Payne’s gray and ivory black. Learn to mix these colors playing with different measuring and see what they do.

By mixing your own colors you will over time create colors that are “yours”. Keep in mind opaque colors will be least likely to work for glazes except as the last color applied.  Thin glazes are good for building color. You must wait for the glazes to be completely dried before applying another or your painting will have streaks. The most transparent colors will work best for this approach.

How About Watercolor Brushes?

Broadway I

Having the right tools is beneficial when painting with watercolor. My blog before was choosing watercolor paper how about what brushes should I buy.

Brushes are very critical in painting a successful painting. I do not mean go out and buy numerous expenses brushes. You should have at least two or three good brushes. My preference is a good brush to lay down a wash, and a good ½” square flat brush.
A good brush will hold and releases the water. If you can the ½” brush can be made from sable or a good synthetic blend. This is also personal preference. As you become a more experience watercolor painter this will become easier.
Remember a well-made brush from a reliable company will last a long time as long as you take good care of your brushes. Which is common sense with anything we buy.
Always remember your brush choice is important, but there are no magic brushes that will help you paint a masterpiece.
As with anything in life practice, practice, practice.

Choosing Watercolor Paper

Venice Bridges17

The watercolor paper you choose will make a big difference on the quality of your painting. When selecting watercolor paper, you need to test brands and weight of the paper. Also keep in mind watercolor paper comes in cold press, hot press, and rough.
I prefer cold press because it has enough tooth for texture. Hot press is very smooth with very little tooth. Rough I would use in some cases depending on what I am trying to accomplish.
The paper is very important when painting with watercolors. A cheaper paper can create many unexpected problems. The watercolor pigment does not respond well on cheap surfaces. It’s also important that the paper be acid-free and long-lasting.
The selection you choose will boil down to personal preference. The seven categories here are some factors you should consider when making a selection: (1) quality, (2) production, (3)content, (4) weight, (5) texture, (6) tinting, and (7) form.

Watercolor paper mostly comes in white or cream. The white and cream allows light to reflect off its surface. This gives a transparent watercolor paint a luminescent look. I also leave the white of the paper in the compositional design of my painting.

You can also apply a thin wash and create your own tint to create and effect or mood.

I prefer 100% cotton which makes it strong but pliable. Paper made from cotton is often referred to as “rag paper”.

Watercolor Washes

Cathedral in Milan

Hard Waterlines
This can happen when applying water to a dry area and the pigment goes to the edge and creates hard-line. To correct soften the edge with a little water and glaze over the area.

Grainy Washes

Dust particulars can dry into your open palette causing pigments to add texture to your paper. If this occurs use your clean damp brush to flatten the sediment in the wash.

Warping and Buckling Paper

Watercolor tends to pool and create a puddle of water causing warping and buckling. Be careful on how much water you use. Move water evenly, in order not to create unwanted lines.

Excess Water
Paper towel or tissue comes in handy when there is excess water. Using natural-hair brush is more absorbent than synthetic brushes.

Backwashes and Blooming
Sometimes there are “happy accidents,” but they can also be a disaster. If your painting is too wet, let area dry to damp and even out the pigment.

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