How to actively deal with and grasp the oil painting colors?

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How to actively deal with and grasp the oil painting colors?

Postby jerryailily » Sun Apr 28, 2013 3:44 am

For beginners in learning oil paintings, some with strong modeling abilities will regard "realism" as the highest realm for themselves. The so-called "realism" is to use a rigorous approach to research the natural attribute of objective things and with artistic methods to faithfully show the basic characteristics of the external objects (including shapes of objects and basic features of color).

Some students (mostly with poor sketch foundation) are usually arbitrary in the usage of colors in operations, because they are unable to handle such rational color and light relationship.

When we stop after a period of practice, we often find such a fact: a rigorous modeling work is loyal to the color and light relationship of objective things, giving people real and natural feelings; and those unreal assignments which are even different from the above relationship maybe show extreme charm because of the subjective color processing with no restrictions of any kind.

So we can come to a conclusion: when we make the sketches at the same subject, we can produce some different color tones with rationality. Even those paintings which are considered to completely fail may not desirable. Perhaps some experienced painters show some skills to make a rare masterpiece give birth (in fact, for the same realistic paintings, different painters will draw different tones). This gives us to propose a new topic-how to boldly and actively make modulation of colors?

In the following methods, we can quickly cultivate our own processing capacity of color tones.

First, take a finished oil painting as reference. Under the premise of not changing the color feeling, strengthen or weaken the tendency of certain colors to see the differences with field sketch.
Second, highly purify the original colors and remove the middle gray level to make the colors of painting form condensed decorative beauty and strong contrast and try to find the relationship between them.
Third, reverse the brightness and color contrast of the painting to make the painting's colors show a negative effect completely contrary to the objective physical image.
Fourth, make color limitations in drawing, meaning to create the color relationship with three or five colors. The use of these colors can be carried out in the vicinity of the colors, which can also emphasize the contrast relations between them, and even the pursuit of close to single color effect.
Fifth, refer to color factors in various image data as much as possible. All kinds of original artwork, all kinds of damaged or even polluted paintings by lots of pollutants, and all images in various waste photographic films could be good references. The use of modern methods to freely change color tone in the computer can create a variety of color effects in the same painting which are clear at a glance.

When doing the modulation exercises of colors, do not draw a little at a glance. We can paint the bottom into a variety of colors before drawing. In this way, we can give priority to characters in drawing and be very naturally to be brought into a color tone, thus breaking the shackles of our objective image. Such modulation of colors is also an important way to the development of our emotional colors.

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Re: Oil Painting

Postby Abyfae » Mon Mar 16, 2015 4:06 pm

Great tip on oil painting. I've always found it a bit tricky to get my kids into arts and painting, however, once i did it really helped to make them busy and creative.

Another trick i used was to print out some of their favorite cartoon coloring pages. they'll love it. You can find a large collection of them at

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