Curious about my painting method? Follow me through the stages of this painting, titled "Canyon."

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I always work off of photos I've taken of the natural world around me. The first thing j do is grid the photo and the canvas I'm going to use. The squares are always one inch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After gridding and placing the basic shapes on the canvas, I water down my acrylic mixes and put down a wash of colors. When it dries, I'm ready to pixel the entire image.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now I pixelate the painting-- but I actually see it more as quilting squares. This is really how I visualize my paintings. 

I mix the colors I need, and keep them in jars as I go, almost like saving a basket of threads and yarns.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I've finished putting all of the color on the canvas! Next up is defining shapes.
All of the pixels are done-- 52 colors, mostly shades of green, with some purples and blues mixed in!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I'm finally ready to define the shapes in my painting-in-progress. 

Since all of the pixels already have color, I am defining the most overall shapes of the composition, breaking up those pixels which contain the most contrast. 

From here, I move into shaping, shading and blending.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The final step in my process is shaping the forms in the pieces and optical blending. This is where the subject comes alive.

Instead of mixing color, I put different colors next to each other and our eye "blends" then to create cohesion. 

Some famous optic blenders you should check out are Chuck Close and Georges Seurat!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And... it's finished! I'm calling it "Canyon." It is 18" by 24" Acrylic on stretched canvas.