It's a jungle out there....
Coyote Down

Miniature Workshop

I have told you before about the great co-op gallery I belong to in Lake Arrowhead.  I don't think I have mentioned the wonderful artists that belong to it.  One of those folks is Jon Olson, a very accomplished painter who specializes in miniatures.  He does shows and gallery displays all over the world and is a fun and interesting person.  His wife, Natalie is equally fun.  So, when they announced that they were offering a free miniature painting workshop I jumped at the chance.

Although I don't have any formal painting experience and don't paint in the "normal" way on paper or canvas, I think I held my own.  I was a bit slower than the others so only got 2 paintings out of 3 completed, but I am pretty happy with the technique and the results.

We started with 3 canvases that are 2 x 3" of different kinds of paper and coatings and chose our reference materials.  He wanted us to try out different substrates to see what we preferred.  My favorite was the first one that I finished on Yupo paper.  It is very smooth and shiny and I am told the paint will end up scraping off if it is not allowed to dry and is sealed properly. 


I have never used oil paints, so chose to try my hand at them today and really loved the color vibrancy and feel of the paint.

The first step was to draw the sketch of what we were going to paint and then using a dark umber color (acrylic) we painted in the oulines and shadows of the piece.




I then dove into the oil paints and just started going to town.  The whole technique is to use the initial shadowing as a base to control the lights and darks.  So you paint in nice thin transparent layers of paint and build up color as you go.  It's fun to see the painting take shape as you add to it.




There are many things I would change or do better now that I have a little practice, but I learned quite a bit and had fun doing it.  Thank you Jon and Natalie!!