A painting without light has no life

Photo Credit: Jack Skipworth via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Jack Skipworth via Compfight cc

Another gem of an article from artist Jack White. How you paint light can make or break your piece, and quite possibly help your career along the way.


Sluggish Sameness
by Jack White
I leave you with this challenge. Discover what light can do for your work. Take the dare to shed sameness and climb to the top of the heap. What do you have to lose by trying? You have much to gain. When you are successfully able to work light into your originals you will stand out for exceptional achievement. Believe me, if I can learn then anyone can. […]
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Three creativity challenges to improve your art

Parasol (watercolor on paper, 16×24) by Keiko Yasuoka

Parasol (watercolor on paper, 16×24) by Keiko Yasuoka

Try freshening up your paintings and painting habits with these tips from artist Keiko Yasouka, courtesy of Cheri Haas, Online Editor of the Artist’s Network.

Three Creativity Challenges to Improve Your Art 

Keiko Yasuoka’s paintings take you to many places. Winter mountain ranges, a busy evening in San Francisco, a sublime bay with sailboats waiting for dawn to break, just to name a few. And these are just her landscapes.Her still life paintings are simply beautiful; and they vary in style, making an interesting collection of work. Keiko is featured in Watercolor Artist (February 2013). In case you haven’t bought your copy yet, I’d like to share her recommended creativity challenges that are meant to inspire you to take your work to new places.

Keiko’s creativity challenges

• Limit your palette when starting your next piece. Using three or four colors will help ensure harmony throughout your painting and strengthen your color-mixing skills.


    • Toss your photograph aside after you’ve blocked in the main elements of your painting. Because no photograph can accurately capture the colors found in nature, it’s best to rely on your knowledge and memory and just use the photograph as an occasional reference.


    • Try something different from your usual [art] workshops. Take a pottery class, work with mixed media for a month or break out your colored pencils. Having a range of experiences to draw upon can help you master techniques that are effective across media and subject matter.

Julie Gilbert Pollard is another talented artist who shares traditional watercolor painting techniques and tips for achieving a loose, painterly quality. Explore more in her book, Watercolor Unleashed: New Directions for Traditional Painting Techniques.