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Acrylic Painting: Basics & Beyond

with Michael Lynne
Acrylic Painting: Basics & Beyond
Jump-start your artistic journey with step-by-step guidance from blank canvas to acrylic work of art!

Discover the essential techniques you need to paint confidently with acrylics! Experienced instructor Michael Lynne walks you through setting up your palette and introduces you to the colorful world of tints, tones and shades. Learn to recognize and recreate value shifts to depict light and form, and develop your painting skills with fun cube studies. Use a simple block-in method to sketch your first still life, and create a sense of space and dimension with cast shadows and highlights. Find out how to incorporate perspective and color theory into a landscape painting, and add depth and luminous warmth with acrylic washes and glazes. Discover essential acrylic tips and techniques and become a better artist today!

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Lesson plan


Lesson 1. The Basics

  • Meet your instructor, fine art instructor Michael Lynne. Set up a workspace with Lynne's tips for preparing a limited nine-color palette, creating transparent, translucent and opaque washes, and identifying and mixing the values and hues that you want to work with.


Lesson 2. The Cube Effect & Gradation

  • Create a value scale and start a series of cube studies that explore value changes between planes. Lynne demonstrates how to vary your work between sharp and soft lines, train your eye to identify and recreate gradation, and lay in light and shadow accurately.


Lesson 3. Simple Monochromatic Still Life

  • Outline your subject in a contour drawing that you値l turn into a monochromatic still life. Using a cube and a cylinder, you値l carefully block in value as you bring more complexity to shadows, highlights and various planes. Lynne shares his professional tips along the way to help you develop strong, lifelike forms.


Lesson 4. Color

  • Immerse your senses in a wash of color as Lynne walks you through everything you need to know about color relationships. Learn the difference between monochromatic, analogous and complementary colors, as well as how each type will help inform your work. You値l learn how to mix the colors you want, create neutral tones and choose eye-popping pairs with Lynne痴 professional tips along the way.


Lesson 5. Color Still Life

  • Plunge into a colorful still life as you continue to improve your skills in drawing contoured reference sketches and painting the hues, values and forms that you see. Working with a simple still life, Lynne helps you break away from your preconceived notion of color relationships as you implement soft and hard lines and various color pairings to represent the ever-changing nature of shadow and light on your subject.


Lesson 6. Aerial Perspective & Glazing

  • Consider the qualities of aerial perspective as Lynne points out methods to create a sense of depth and distance using acrylics. Then learn how to mix and apply translucent glazes, a classic technique that will add an eye-catching glow and timeless appeal to your work.


Lesson 7. Painting a Landscape From a Photo

  • Finish the class with an in-depth exploration of landscape studies. Lynne helps you determine how to identify, photograph and crop intriguing landscape images before walking you through ways to lay in the sky and use contour mapping to block in the foreground and background. You値l finish the class with a beautiful completed painting and a new understanding of the myriad ways you can use acrylics to create anything that catches your imagination!

"I really enjoyed the lessons! The slow pace used by the teacher allows you to absorb the techniques being taught, and he is quite thorough in teaching the basics!"
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