The Devil is in the Details

I have finally finished my first “realistic” acrylic painting, although I use that word rather advisedly. Realism in acrylics has proved to be a bit of a challenge, especially when it comes down to the details.

Acrylic Paint - Acrylics on Canvas 9 x 12

Acrylic Paint – Acrylics on Canvas 9 x 12

I did all right on the shape of the tube, but all that detailed lettering proved to be a bit more than I could handle. This painting is part of the Acrylic Paint Academy course at The Virtual Instructor. A reference photo is provided in the lesson. Unfortunately I couldn’t make out all the “fine print” from the photo, so I did my best and improvised.

I started this painting a couple weeks ago and worked on it very slowly. I did the background and the shape of the paint tube, then painted the colors, and added a slight bit of cast shadow. For the second stage, I worked on the cap and the “shiny” metal areas of the tube. Mine don’t look quite so shiny.

Finally, it came time to face up to the lettering. It was easier than I’d expected in some respects, but much more difficult than I’d imagined in others.Β  Matt Fussell, the virtual instructor, commented in the lesson that students oftenΒ want to give up or just leave off most of the text. Was he ever right! I was sorely tempted to omit a lot of it, especially since I couldn’t read it clearly in the reference photo. But I’d come this far with the drawing, and I wanted it to be over. Not because I’d given up on it, but because I had finished it.

So, I stuck it out, did my best, and hopefully I created “the illusion” of text. I don’t think I’ll ever be an artist who does highly-detailed work. I am glad that this painting is done and I can now move on in the course and learn more about acrylics and how to properly use them.

Advertisements

About Judith

Author, artist, and an independent consultant for Perfectly Posh. I enjoy sharing my thoughts and interests through blogging and invite you to visit my sites.

59 comments

  1. I think it works very well!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree, it looks great. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You did great! I’m glad you’re getting used to acrylics.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Nice work! Acrylics may wind up being your thing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I’m learning. Right now watercolor is still a favorite but that’s probably because I’ve got more experience in it..LOL. All of what…3 or 4 months? Acrylics are still a little more challenging for me, but I’ll be doing more paintings.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I still have no desire to paint other than abstract in acrylic. I see it as my “fun” medium, not trying or aiming for anything other than beautiful color combos but you may inspire me if you keep on this track! I was wowed when this popped up in my reader!

        Liked by 1 person

      • So glad I could “wow” you for once. πŸ™‚ I do have a couple of abstracts coming up in posts soon, but I’m not happy with them. I think I’m tending to lean more toward realism in my painting. Not overly-detailed, but more representational. I think that’s part of my goal for this year’s journey…figuring out more precisely what I want to paint and working to understand and develop more of my own style. I’m really doing a lot of experimenting right now as you’ll see with the posts coming up this week and next.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Yeah, I understand. Until Penny got really sick, the last thing on my mind was abstract anything. It just wasn’t on my radar. But oddly, I found Debora Stewart on Artist Network TV, I watched her lesson about color, got her book from the library, all during the time Penny had to be stayed with because she was so ill…….then started painting my feelings in abstract. Enjoyed it so much that I’ve not looked back. Who knew? I think as you say, it’s only through trying and discovering and seeing what clicks with us that we learn what we’re meant to do. I love drawing realistically, it jazzes the heck outta me, but I do not like my realistic paintings, ever. Closest I come to liking them is with neocolor and again we have something with a point. I’m happy with my realistic drawings (now after drawing almost daily for a year), but not my paintings. Ever.

        Liked by 2 people

      • I think there’s a “happy medium” — no pun intended — between realism and looseness in painting styles. For me, art seems to be a lot about connecting with emotions. The mood of a painting is what always catches my eye when I look at art. Color plays a huge part in that, obviously, probably more than subject. It’s interesting, really, to consider what I like and dislike in paintings I see and to compare that with what I like and dislike in my own paintings. Up until now, most of what I’ve done — nearly all, in fact — has been an “assignment”, a subject chosen by someone else. It’s hard to feel expressive when there’s no real connection to what you’re drawing or painting, no underlying reason why I’m compelled to paint that particular place or person. I’m starting to choose things on my own — my daughter, the van, my stuffed animals — and that makes a huge difference. I think abstract art offers the chance to work more directly with thoughts and feelings without limitation. I’m not yet at the point where I’m ready to fly without those boundaries, so I think that’s why I’m still more comfortable staying a little closer to reality. My experience is almost the exact opposite of yours. Except for the first “Demon Green” abstract (watercolor), I haven’t really liked my abstractions. Oh, the purple and yellow flowery-looking painting was all right. I liked it at first, but I soon grew tired of looking at it. So even though I love abstract art, I’m just not happy with my attempts. That might change in time. I don’t know, and that’s what makes the future so exciting.

        Liked by 1 person

      • It is a fun way to discover yourself and the world, isn’t it? I did a few tutorials from books and a video or two when I was learning WC but I had the hardest time finding something I connected with enough to want to paint it. Doing an “assignment” squashes my mojo immediately, to the point I don’t even get out of the gate, so I do understand what you’re talking about. I’m a very emotional person, to the point that I wish I weren’t. I can’t seem to help my emotions from getting into my paintings. It’s good for me, because I keep too much inside. But I think anytime your emotions are strong, it is good if you’re painting, drawing or writing. Makes the work have lots of impact. But as to practical life? Yeah, not so good, and I’d change it if I could. Art is really helping me understand myself more than living to almost 50 ever has!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Art is an incredible form of self-expression, and we definitely learn a lot about ourselves through what we draw and paint. Strong emotions do add impact, and I’m looking forward to creating more things I “want” rather than strictly following assignments. At the same time, though, it is still helpful for me to have the guidance a tutorial provides. I’m at a point where it’s really hard for me to assess my drawings and paintings, so having something as a “guide” is important. I need to see what I’m doing wrong. Of course, that’s still relating back to representational art. For now, I do think that’s where I’m most comfortable. I’m going to be doing a lot of abstracts in the coming year though, and hopefully my compositional skills will improve.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Composition, the great bugaboo! That’s the great thing though, we know daily practice works wonders in developing any skill! Nice to be sharing the road with you, Judith. πŸ’›πŸŒ…

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks. It’s going to be a sea-faring voyage over the next year…LOL. I’m reading Treasure Island — again — and I wrote a post earlier today about my artistic journey, and it somehow turned into “sailing off” to find the gold of our dreams. Welcome aboard, matey! And yeah, you’ll be seeing ocean scenes and even a pirate coming up. I just finished painting “Pirate Cove” this morning. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  5. dawnmarie

    Good job!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The tube of paint is a wonderful metaphor, and the way you portrayed it can be a template for everything else. It’s all here in potential, the way an acorn becomes an oak tree.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t choose the subject, of course. It was part of the course at The Virtual Instructor. I did think it was rather appropriate for my first realistic acrylic painting, and you’re right, it is a wonderful metaphor. Thanks for pointing that out.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. It’s AWESOME Judith! Amazing accomplishment!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Great! The lid in particular looks so real.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks. I thought I’d ruined the lid. It looked good the first time I painted it, but it got a little misshapen when I tried to add a bit of shading. Of course, the more I fooled with it, the worse it got 😦

      Liked by 1 person

  9. An object we all love! A wonderful representation!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Wow! This is awesome work, Judith! Woot! Woot!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Jui

    nice work! I agree with the text part. I find it difficult to paint text. You have done it brilliantly. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Hey, that is super. I am finding with acrylics that good planning pays … figuring out how to handle things before I approach them is going to help moving forward.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Great work, i think you nailed this very well. Regarding details of print on the tube, you probably would have gotten away writing gobbledygook, as long as it started with a G, the eye will complete the rest, and often eyes “like having something to complete”, it leaves one looking a bit longer at the painting. Hope to see more of your acrylics! “Dig one well”?

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Pingback: A Flight of Fancy | artistcoveries

I'd Love to Hear Your Thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: