What Is The Purpose Of Painting A Still Life?

For most of my artistic life I’ve wondered what the purpose of painting a still life was. In school, I found them to be the most boring subjects of all and a waste of time. They felt painful to work on and I had a lot of resistance to drawing and painting them. Portraits were my sweet spot and I loved the challenge of capturing someone’s essence on canvas.

What is the purpose of painting a still life

Things started to change for me this year when I took up painting again. I knew I would be staying home more because both of my dogs were very ill and I needed

Continue Reading »

Creative and Artistic Halloween Invitations

Since Fall has arrived, I thought I’d share some really cool creative and artistic Halloween invitations that I found on Zazzle along with one quick pumpkin study to kick off the season.

Pumpkin Study by Shelley Hanna

Pumpkin Study painting in ArtRage

Pumpkin Study: Having Fun In ArtRage

In a previous post, I talked a bit about digital art and a couple programs I’ve been using. ArtRage continues to be the program I reach for when I want to paint. Above is a quick study of a pumpkin I did to celebrate

Continue Reading »

Painting Dog Portraits & The Gifts Dogs Give Us Unconditionally

Painting dog portraits is something I’ve done for as long as I can remember. Last weekend I continued working on my digital painting skills by doing this portrait of a dog named Scoby.

Painting dog portraits & the gifts dogs give us unconditionally

If you’ve ever had kombucha, you may understand his name a little better. His momma, Donna Schwenk, is the founder of Cultured Food Life and is a

Continue Reading »

Learning How To Do Fine Art Painting Using Procreate And ArtRage

I’m finally learning how to do fine art painting using Procreate and ArtRage with the iPad Pro. I resisted getting an iPad for SO LONG and was one of those traditional snobs who thought “digital art wasn’t real art”. BUT, the world is changing and my mind is changing regarding the subject. Bottom line, I’m coming to realize there is a definitely a place for digital art in today’s world.

painting using procreate and artrage

Painting Using Procreate And ArtRage – Is It  Cheating?

To me I thought it was too easy to cheat or difficult to do very “painterly” art digitally based on some of the work I’ve seen out there. However, there are a lot of ways to

Continue Reading »

How To Paint A Dog Portrait Step-By-Step In Oil

How to paint a dog portrait step-by-step

How to paint a dog portrait step-by-step in oil

I recently did a portrait of an adorable dog named Chewy and decided this was a great opportunity to show how to paint a dog portrait step-by-step in oil. Originally I did this with Snapguide but it looks like with some browsers that the images don’t always show up. Because of that, I decided to revise this post to show a shortened version of the step-by-step process. You’ll want to check out Snapguide too because I have videos loaded so you can follow along in more detail with each step.

How to paint a dog portrait step-by-step in oil

Click the image to go directly to the Snapguide tutorial

Before I start on the painting I get a print of the image I’m going to work from at the same size as the canvas I’ll be painting on. In this instance, my canvas was 8″x8″, so that is the

Continue Reading »

Painting Failures And Mistakes – Should I Give Up Or Start Over?

The odyssey of one of my painting failures begins…

Life is full of failures. I’ve had small painting failures before, but this one had me starting over. I had primed one of my panels improperly and the painting just wasn’t working. This painting was a commission and had to be done within a specific time frame and a mistake was not part of the plan.

Painting Failures image

It started out great, or so I thought…

Above you see the progression of the painting I’m talking about. It might look good in the photo, but the first two shots are of the panel that failed.

I started the drawing and captured the likeness, but as I continued to work I noticed I was struggling with the paint on the surface. I had just started painting in oils, so I really didn’t know if this was a normal thing or something going terribly wrong.

All I knew is that the struggle was getting really, really, real!

Step 1: The pain begins:

Painting of Sammie step one - painting failures

Sammie step 1 – a disaster waiting to happen

For step 1 on this little painting of Sammie, the cutie-pie Cavalier King Charles, I was feeling pretty good about how the drawing

Continue Reading »

A Spooky Thing Happened In The Studio Today

Spooky things sometimes happen while painting

Every once in awhile, spooky stuff happens while creating a piece of art. I’ve had drawings in the past that would contain a full portrait in the background of somebody I never intended to draw. This happened in college and scared my roommate so bad that she never really got over it! (Still makes me laugh.)

Today I was staining a canvas and noticed a face appearing right before I wiped it down.

painting today in the studio

Is it Donald Trump or my mind playing tricks?

It wasn’t just me!

I posted this image on Instagram and an artist friend of mine, Stephen Holding, had the exact same thing happen to him yesterday. Double spooky

Continue Reading »