Venturing into Acrylic Painting

A photo of a person sitting front of the computer

Recently, a friend entrusted me with the task of creating three large artworks to grace her living room. As an enthusiast of such projects, I couldn't possibly decline the offer. In discussing her preferences, I discovered that she didn't have any particular thematic inclination, but rather, a simple desire for something outstanding. This set me off on a journey to unearth the secret recipe for creating "amazing" wall art.

After some deliberation, I decided to pivot towards a classic motif—flowers—but with a twist to infuse them with a fresh, contemporary vibe.

The next challenge was selecting the medium. My choices were colored pencils, watercolor, oil pastels, acrylic paint, and oil paint.

Colored pencils and watercolors, while lovely, often fail to deliver the intense colors needed for larger artworks. Their application could be labor-intensive for creating expansive images.

My experience with oil pastels is limited and they, too, present certain challenges. Corrections are difficult, and covering large surfaces can be laborious.

The remaining options were acrylic and oil paints. Both intriguing, but after some research, I discovered that oil paints are more expensive and harder to work with due to their long drying times. Thus, I settled on acrylic paints as my chosen medium. Aspiring to create a masterpiece, I knew it was essential to master some fundamental acrylic techniques. I've dabbled with acrylics before, but never really delved into understanding the nuances of this medium. While there are countless tutorials available online, many can be confusing or hard to follow. That's when I found Will Kemp’s Art School ( Kemp's videos are clear, easy to follow, and uniquely address the 'why' along with the 'how' of painting. His instructions inspired me to create a painting of a Scottish Croft:

Painting of Scottish Croft

This initial success bolstered my confidence, perhaps a little too much, leading to a less successful second attempt.

Painting of Seaside

Subsequently, my confidence took a bit of a hit. However, I was determined to improve. I revisited Kemp's lessons and painted a floral composition using a reference photo from the internet.

Painting of Flowers

The result was satisfying, though I craved the satisfaction of creating an original composition. As fate would have it, we had some pomegranates at home. Inspired, I painstakingly arranged them for about an hour before I was finally satisfied.

Composing still life

Ultimately, I am quite pleased with the end result of my endeavors.