Acrylic Painting … or Illustration

I take a lot of reference photos and once in awhile, I’ll get a shot that just needs to be put on canvas. The Barn was a photo I snapped a couple of summers ago.

Faithorn Barn painting step 4 Finished
Faithorn Barn

When painting my whimsical characters like silly birds I tend to be methodical. Finishing one area before going on to the next.  In contrast, when painting landscapes I try to get an overall feel for the color and lay down a light underpainting. Next step is flesh out the background area and then move to the foreground. The last step is to come back in with detail. The painting is worked from background to foreground.

Faithorn Barn painting step 1
The Barn step 1
Faithorn Barn painting step 2
The Barn step 2

Faithorn Barn painting step 3
The Barn step 3

I’ve been trying to loosen up my painting style and be a little more “painterly” as opposed to illustrating with paint. I envy artists that have a loose style and can paint quickly with lots of expressive strokes. So far I have been able to speed up the amount of time it takes to finish a painting.

Even though this painting has my illustrative style and not the painterly style I had first envisioned, I’m happy with the way this painting turned out. I may be fighting the current trying to be more “painterly”. Perhaps I should just go with the flow and embrace my natural illustrative style. More practice, more experimenting, more painting fun.

This design is available on Cards, Prints, and Canvas.