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Acrylics Anonymous, Issue #075 -- Detach and Reconnect.
September 01, 2018

Passionate about painting with acrylics? Need a monthly fix chock full of inspiration? Need some help to take the pain out of your painting process? It's all here for you. Acrylics Anonymous. Zero elitism. Dive in.

If you enjoy Acrylics Anonymous, and you know someone who might also enjoy it, you can share by forwarding it to your friends!

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Every month, we will produce a Subscribers Only "sealed section". It could be a painting technique, a short video tip, or anything we can think of that we reckon you might enjoy.

Please let us know what you think, we love your feedback! To leave comments, contact us here.

Exclusively Yours - Three Skills to Make a Painting
*click to access*

Click here for the video!

I Need Some Space

Sometimes when a painting doesn’t make sense to you, all that’s needed is a little separation.

Try spending 24 hours without looking at it. Chances are, next time you see it, you’ll see exactly what the problem is! (The next thing is fixing it though, haha).

Micador For Artists

Exciting news everyone! We now have a partnership with another great Aussie company, Micador. Mark is currently trialling some new Roymac brushes, and loving them (mostly because his other brushes should have been condemned six months ago!).

And just for being our AA subscribers, you guys can have 20% off all Micador products!! Trust me they have a lot of stuff you can use! Use the code WALLER20 at checkout. Bonza!!

To browse the huge range of Micador products, click here.

50k+ Youtube Subscribers!

Who would’ve thought a guy who can barely turn on a computer could reach a milestone like this! ;) We are very excited about the possibilities of growing our channel into the future, and are planning on uploading more videos more often.

Don’t forget to subscribe, and click on the notification bell to keep up to date with our latest clips!

Click here to Explore our Youtube channel.

Every month, we choose an Artist from our forum to showcase.

You can even nominate someone if you like. (Or yourself!). To do this, check out the forum and then send us an email! It’s that easy.

This month we're featuring Jenny Berry, from Adelaide, Australia with her paintings under the title "Underwater Love". We are loving the depth you’ve achieved with “Blue Synergy” and the transparency of the water with “Ningaloo Reef: Threadfin Butterfly”. Beautiful work Jenny - thank you so much for sharing!

Click here to read about Jenny's Underwater Loves.

Have you seen this? The Canvas Project was imagined by Brazilian artist Gabriel Nardelli Araújo. He seeks to “free” classical figures digitally, into modern day settings; with astounding results.

Check out his instagram here.

Are you into sculpture? Dive into Joey Marcella’s process for his contemporary marble sculpture “Aura” - link to the video at the end of the page. Absolutely fascinating!

Click for Joey Marcella's sculpture works.

If you have a link you like, please share it with us! You can contact us to let us know. Thank you!

This is the section where you can "get your name in lights!" (well at least out there in the internet world!).

If you have works in progress you would love to show off, or finished pieces you are particularly proud of, we would love to see them!

We especially like to hear about the story behind the creation.

This month's submission comes from Chroma's own resident artist, and all round lovely human, Jennifer VonStein.

From Jen:

"My paintings are stories, responses and celebrations of people, places and memories. As such, they have many layers in them, and they go through many stages in their development.  I’ve found that taking pictures of my work at various stages helps me to see where I am going and plan my next moves.  I also spend a lot of time just looking at my work before, during and after a painting session.  Sometimes, my husband will check in on me at the beginning of a session, and see me standing and staring at a painting in progress. He’ll come back a few hours later (ideally with food and/or drink) and find me in an almost identical position.  “Did you even do anything?” he’ll ask.   Of course I did, but for me, looking at what I painted is what drives my work forward to a place where I am satisfied enough to call it complete, or at the very least, resolved.

Lately, my work has focused on animals, people, and animals as people. One thing I do 99% of the time for any work is to start on a colored surface.  I use the Atelier Free Flow Colored Gessoes (Indian Red Oxide is my latest fave) or Atelier Free Flow colors (Cadmium Yellow Light or Quinacridone Magenta) to set the stage.  This habit is based from my early days, where painting on a neutral ground helps you judge tonal values.  While value is important in my paintings, emotional impact is more, so I like to start off with punchier colors.

Once dry, I sketch in very rough shapes using vine charcoal, and start to lay in.  I use Atelier Interactive Artists’ Acrylics mixed with Clear Painting Medium, and I apply it with a large painting knife.  I use a full spectrum, contemporary Impressionist split complementary palette, and my staples are:  Titanium White, Cadmium Yellow Light, Cadmium Yellow Medium (or Deep), Transparent Perinone Orange, Napthol Red Light, Quinacridone Magenta, Dioxazine Purple, French Ultramarine Blue, Cobalt Blue, Cobalt Turquoise Light and Permanent Sap Green, with others as needed. For the longest time, I didn’t really use blacks or earth colors, but for some of my new figurative works, I’ve rediscovered the magic of Burnt Umber and Raw Sienna.

My goal in the first session is to get as much of the main masses painted as possible, using cool colors for areas in shadow and warm colors for areas in sun.  Once that is finished, I usually stop for one of my many staring sessions. Then I take pictures and notes!  I note the areas that need a bunch of work, the ones that don’t look completely horrible and the ones that look like they are heading the right direction.  If I need to correct my shapes and I just can’t seem to do it with a brush or knife, I draw back on top of the painting with charcoal or chalk. I plan my attack for the next session.  The later sessions are all about refinements, building texture, adding details and glazing using knives and brushes.  I do use the Unlocking Formula frequently to help blend during a session, because my studio is either super-hot or super cold! I apply 2-3 coats of Chroma’s Finishing Varnish in Satin or Gloss to protect and preserve my work.

My sessions tend to be 2-4 hours, after work and family time with my young children (I tend to post on Instagram after midnight EST!)  I am not above taking some of my early work and bringing them into Photoshop and doing some EXTREMELY rough cut-and-pastes to fix elements, or superimpose a reference on top of the photo of my existing work-in-progress.  Sometimes it helps me see things better, especially if it is an area where I am struggling or if the painting is in the ubiquitous ugly stage. I also have a couple of dear artist friends who are the lucky recipients of my late night/early morning texts with images of what I created, and they provide some insights, but usually later in the day when they are awake.  It’s a blessing that I have people in my life that provide helpful, constructive criticism, and by sharing my works in progress online, I find myself more accountable to making the works the best they can be.

The best piece of advice I ever received about painting is “Don’t treat your work as precious.”  This doesn’t mean not to value your work, but you cannot be afraid of doing something wrong or making a mistake in fear of ruining it.  Honestly, most of the times I am unhappy with a section it’s because I have been too fussy and am afraid of doing anything else because it looked “pretty,” but something (a voice? a vision? a muse? my gut?) is telling me to push on.  Not all the times I push are immediately successful – indeed, I find that sometimes I have ANOTHER section that now needs to be resolved – but every time I push, every time I do not treat my work as precious, the work comes out stronger. Every Single Time… although it may add hours to the process!

Ultimately, there comes a time when it stops being about creating a likeness or remaining true to some preconceived idea. It becomes about the painting, and what needs to be done to make the work be interesting as a painting, from 3 inches away, 3 feet away and from across the room. The painting knows what it wants to be.  After all, I am a contemporary painter living in contemporary times, and I can make any decision I want in my artworks. I’m not an impressionist, I’m not a realist, and I don’t have to subscribe to any formula.  All I need to do is not be afraid, throw some paint down and tell my stories."

Thanks so much Jen for sharing with us!

To check out Jen's instagram, click here. For Jen's facebook, click here. And for Jen's website, click here.

Hope you enjoyed this issue of Acrylics Anonymous!

If you have any suggestions, comments or feedback for the ezine or our site, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Until next time, make sure you chuck some paint around!

Cheers from Frankie & Mark :)

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