I’m not an artist. I’m not independently wealthy. But Bob and Bill say anyone can paint, so from time to time I enjoy slapping some paint around to see what wanders out of my mind, in the least expensive manner possible. When I was a child I painted my toys and models (sometimes with my mom’s awesome metallic nail polish!), while today I enjoy painting with cheap acrylic paints from the dollar store (and Walmart, if I can’t find the color elsewhere). Here’s my setup,
I have several DecoArt paint colours (Dollarama), a set of paint brushes and palette knives (from Micheal’s), a plastic serving dish for a palette (Dollarama), an easel made from junk, an old rag, a few recycled containers, and a piece of non-slip stuff. It’s not much, but it’s sufficient for painting small surfaces. Indeed, I intentionally paint on a small “canvas”, because it makes the paint last a very long time, even though it’s an enormous pain in the ass to paint tiny features.
I create many of my paintings on “practice canvases” that I made out of corrugated card board boxes, primed with a mixture of white paint and drywall compound (which I already had handy). These canvases are essentially free, where as a 5×7″ linen-over-cardboard canvas costs about a dollar. Larger canvases cost $3 to $50 each, which adds up quickly and ends up creating a significant amount emotional inertia. I would much rather have the experience of painting something “bad” on a piece of junk than to fret over painting something worthy of the canvas it was painted upon. Painting is supposed to be fun!
Here is a gallery of things I have painted. It seems to be impossible to take pictures of these paintings with the correct lighting and color balance and there’s only so much I can do with Gimp to correct the brightness/contrast, but the results are close enough.
The one that started it all! I was painting at the table with my youngest daughter. I’ve watched a lot of Bob Ross since the early 1990s, so I have a very good understanding of the techniques he uses to compose an image. It’s obviously a little different when using dollar store acrylics on a piece of paper hahaha….
Based on an imaged I had in my mind of a modification to a real place. This was really my first attempt to paint something of this sort since grade 9 in the early 1990s.
An imaginary place. This was an attempt to paint something like the previous painting with more deliberately place blobs of paint/colour and brush strokes. Still working on that…
Based on a photo I took of a real location. It looks much nicer in real life, as you see more of the colours and less of the texture of the canvas.
My eldest daughter challenged me to paint a subject. Not really my cup of tea, but this lily-like imaginary flower turned out OK.
Aping the lighting and colour positioning of a Bob Ross painting, to practice that sort of thing. This is my middle daughter’s favorite, so I gave it to her. The “fireworks tree” in the middle is ridiculous lol…
Spent a good 18 hours painting and repainting this one. The sky is the result of me getting fed up with not being able to create the sky that I wanted – these paints are waaay harder to use than oils with the alla prima method. Basically, none of the techniques one can learn from Bob Ross are applicable to this cheap acrylic paint, so I have to use general artistic principles a lot of trial and error to achieve the desired results. I used a photo of driving up Hwy 62 as a reference for the scaling, but apart from the position of the horizon, the painting looks nothing like the photo.
Something fun I did just before Christmas. After a few weeks I went back and tried painting the house in dark colours, but it looked like a toddler painted it, so went over it black again. I actually prefer it this way.
Practice trees on a hastily created background resembling part of another painting in which I wished to place a tree. They look Japanese rather than like the fall maple saplings I was going for…
Inspired by a photo I took of the Eagle’s Nest in Bancroft, Ontario. I thought it would be a fun challenge to make it seem as though one was at the top of a water fall looking down. The scale was totally wrong until I made the distant horizon too fuzzy to see an details. I left out the foreground tree on the left, because I didn’t want to ruin the rest of the painting.
Slapped this together while we were all painting at the kitchen table as a family. This photo is hideous – the yellow is much more defined in person.
A practice of leaves I made on a hastily composed pot. My middle liked this one and wanted me to paint a single flower on it for her. I think I actually like these fuzzy looking large leaves more than the smaller ones I made later on the other painting of a potted plant.
A pot of flowers that I painted for one of my daughters. I was reluctant to paint over the pot (for a couple months), as I did a nice job on it. Yet to add the flowes.
Started as a just a grey canvas… then some mountains… then some messy trees in front of the mountains… then a very large tree… then the rock cliffs on the left, leading to the tree on the left. Scale is wonky, but I like the idea of the image…
I had some left over green and white from adding the leaves to different painting, so I mushed this sky together and found it really compelling. I like the spooky trees and the composition/contrast of the closest tree over the distant sky…
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