Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Painting From Photos (In an Hour)

 My workshop topic today was painting from photos. 
I asked them to bring photos that had a strong light and shadow pattern. 
Some tricks I use to determine what photos would make good paintings:
I print them, then color everything in shadow with a black marker. 
The pattern is immediately apparent. 
I download all the photos from one location and view them as a contact sheet.
The ones with the best light and shadow pattern just pop out!
I print them in black and white, bump up the contrast, 
and/or boost the color. 
Same thing. 
You can immediately tell if it's a good composition. 
I was so excited about the work these gals did. 
In an hour!  

My demo

Peggy's took on such a wonderful abstract quality

Judy, a beginner, was not afraid to use 
a lot of paint and big brushes. 

Barbara really simplified the shapes and kept the values. 

Suzanne never thought she could do this in a hour. 
With just a few adjustments, this will be finished!

Look at those light and shadow shapes!


  1. Wow great work here...a testament to a wonderful teacher!

  2. Just fabulous! Your class is awesome and as Julie said, it is a sign of a great teacher!

  3. Looks as if you have the skill to bring out the best in your students.
    Love them all, particularly the Swan boat.

  4. You are a really good teacher..Each painting is beautiful..thanks for the great tips

  5. A very enjoyable, informative post, Nancy!