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March 2019 Issue

Articles, Tips & Videos

Painting Like Vincent Van Gogh
Join art teacher Sue Deighton as she paints a cameo from Vincent van
Gogh's "Fishing Boats on the Beach at Saintes-Maries", using a
combination of oils and acrylics.

How to Choose the Best Background for Your Artwork

We've updated one of our most popular blogs of all time. Picking the
perfect background for your painting or drawing has never been so

How to Master Basic Perspective: Part 1

Start your artwork off on the right foot by mastering the surprisingly
simple concept of perspective. A blog for all artists of all abilities.

Colour Pencil Demonstration: The Four Counties Boat Trip

Artist Jane Lazenby demonstrates how to create detail when using
coloured pencils. Using the Four Counties Canal as inspiration - this is
a complex piece which achieves stunning results.

Reader Poll:
If you could only paint one subject with one medium for the rest of your
life, what would it be?

In last month's poll, we asked whether you prefer realistic or
impressionistic artwork. People who don't draw and paint tend to prefer
realism and judge artwork based on how closely it resembles a photo. But
what do amateur artists think? Here's the result from 2000 entries...

* A third of people like an equal measure of realism and loose,
expressive marks. But they lean towards impressionistic.

* 60% of people lean towards impressionism and 40% towards realism.

* Only 9% of people prefer very realistic artwork compared to 15% who
prefer very impressionistic artwork.

This suggests that people who actually make art tend to appreciate
impressionism more than realism. A very different viewpoint to the
general public and maybe down to appreciating how much skill is actually
in a striking, loose piece of art.

In this week's poll , we're
asking which one medium and subject you would choose to make art with,
if you could only choose one for the rest of you life...

Cast YourVote

NEW Classes & Courses

Forest with a Palette Knife
| Oils | Newcomer
| 30m-1hr | Artist: Peter Keegan

Quebec 'Getting By' |
Watercolours | Intermediate | 1-2hrs | Artist: Brian Smith

Sunset Seascape with a Palette Knife
| Oils |
30m-1hr | Artist: Peter Keegan

Rocky Coastline |
Watercolours | Newcomer | 1-2hrs | Artist: Michele Illing





Browse All Courses & Classes

"Ruby" by Kimberly Jones - Pastels on velour

Member Artwork Showcase

This incredible pastel painting of a boxer dog called Ruby is by
extremely talented ArtTutor member Kimberly Jones. I have a particular
fondness for boxer dogs and for pastels and there a hundred other
reasons why this grabbed my attention. I'll see if I can pick out a few
that you might be able to use...

I love the pose and composition in this portrait. So many pet portraits
are front on with the animal stirring squarely at the viewer. That can
work very well of course, but I think a gaze off "camera" is often more
poignant and moving. I also like how Kimberly has included the paws and
some background too. I see a lot of animal portraits that are floating
heads on a white background. I think it's hard to see any emotion or
personality in the animal when its head looks somehow detached from its

In terms of the rendering, it's superb. So realistic yet retaining some
artistic style and deliberate mark-making. If you aspire to this kind of
level, and you haven't given pastels a go yet, treat yourself to a set.
You don't have the same time pressure you do with a wet medium, like
oils or acrylics, and they are far less time-consuming than graphite or
coloured pencil. Of course, a piece like this still takes time (over 10
hours, says Kimberly).

If you'd like to get started with pastels, see our guide to getting set
up here.

Phil Davies

Worthy Follow for Powerful Portraits in Pencil

Check out Emmy Kalia on Instagram
(search: emmykalia). Completely self-taught (and a huge advocate of
practicing and learning from mistakes), Emmy primarily creates human
portraits but also some fantastic floral and animal artwork too. She
posts lots of 'works in progress' so you can see the journey of the
artwork from start to finish.

Follow Emmy Kalia on Instagram

Get tips, blogs and inspirational art as we publish it by following us
on social media...










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