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  • 01388 665919
  • lynn@bondgategallery.co.uk


Category: Acrylics

Black gesso added


Bluebell Wood in Acrylics

3 hoursĀ 3 hours.

Paint abstract acrylics with palette knife

  1. Black out the canvas

    Here I cover the canvas with black gesso mixed with some resin sand and black lava paste. This gives a textured surface which helps give broken colour when you drag acrylics with palette knife across.Black gesso added

  2. Apply background

    Apply a light green using palette knife leaving the black areas alone to form the trees.Apply colour with palette knife

  3. Add More Colour

    Still using a palette knife drag some pure yellow across the greens. Because the surface is heavily textured the wet paint will only be deposited on the raised surfaces.Add yellow with palette knife

  4. Lighten Sky

    Using the palette knife drag white paint and yellow over the surface, working it into the middle of the canvas to give a brightly lit background. Then drag a prime blue across the foreground.Adding blue foreground

  5. Add Pure White

    Using a large palette knife add thicker white to the sky.Add fine branches

  6. Add smaller branches

    Using a small palette knife and a fine brush paint in the branches using black/Adding Finer Branches

  7. Adding to the foreground

    Now drag Magenta and blue onto the foreground, leaving darker shadows below the trees. Use a palette knife to drag light green across parts of the foreground. When dry add paler magenta and blue to build up the texture.Add Magenta and blue

  8. Finishing Off

    Continue using the acrlics with palette knife to drag lighter colours across the surface until you are happy with the finish. Add more light to the middle distance of the ground.Bluebell Wood

Painting in Progress

This is a selection of photos showing how I develop a painting. This is an acrylic painting on canvas of Bishop Auckland at Christmas. Below that is the process used to paint abstract acrylics.

I start by painting in the background sky then gradually block in the buildings getting stronger to the front. Figures are dotted in randomly using just black acrylic, then colour is added to bring them to life. Windows are added and bright spots of yellows and whites accentuate the light coming from them. Some reflections are added to the wet roads and brighter patches of snow are laid down.

How To Paint Abstract Acrylics

  1. Black Out The Canvas.

    Use black gesso to cover the surface of the canvas. This helps gives you immediate coverage and sets you free to just paint.

  2. Use Textured Mediums.

    Mix a textured paste such as resin sand or black lava from Liquitex onto the canvas the same time as the black gesso. This gives a tooth so that paint can be dragged across it just catching the particles on the top surface.

  3. Block In The Larger Shapes.

    Use a large brush to paint in the main shapes of your painting. A brush at the beginning will work the paint into the textured surfaces.

  4. Use A Palette Knife

    Use a broad palette knife to drag colour across just catching the textured surface, Add a lighter colour to the knife and repeat the strokes, just with a lighter touch. Build up the paint to give a more abstract feel with the black gesso peeping through.How to paint acrylics

  5. Add Detail.

    Use a brush to define smaller shapes such as figures or architecture. Then drag an accent of colour over the shape using a smaller palette knife.

  6. Stop Early.

    Don’t overdo the detail in an abstract painting, let the viewer’s eye add their own vision. Less is more.

  7. Review Your Painting.

    Keep stepping back from your easel to see the bigger picture. On this painting the trees were just the black gesso with colour dragged in between and across the broken surface.