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To judge your mistakes better, use a flat mirror and look at your creation in it. This gives the illusion that it was done by someone else (you are now seeing it as everyone else is), so you can criticize better (for it is much harder to criticize yourself). You will be surprised, I know I was when I used this trick from Leonardo Da Vinci's notebooks. This is one of the best ways of seeing your flaws in your own art work. The other Da Vinci mentions is: Use a peace of glass or anything that can be used to trace on.Trace a very basic outline ( just enough to mark were everything is) and trace this onto your paper or surface that your using (The other method Da Vinci invented was the drawing grid, this was used for large scale painting such as The Last Supper.). This is the most useful advice I've ever been able to find on the perspective.
...use a flat mirror and look at your creation in it.
- Leonardo da Vinci
I agree, this is an excellent "trick" for evaluating composition. Another one that I learned from my late friend and mentor Joe Glasco is to look at the canvas upside-down and on its side. A really good composition will look balanced no matter which way you turn it.
I will add that a great storage container for short brushes is a plastic spaghetti storage tube from the dollar discount store. You can store them upright which will make them last longer.
Another idea is using an ashtray for fresh water for brush wetting and the sectioned cigarette holder is perfect as a rest for keeping the brushes in use handy. Just be sure it is clean!
Utilize the secrets of the Old Masters to reflect an image of your subject right over your paper or canvas!
When you look through view hole you'll see a transparent "ghost" image of the landscape, object or person you are drawing and you simply draw right over that image. The result is a perfectly proportioned sketch with correct perspective-captured with your own hand quickly and easily.
Good point Carson,experience is the greatest teacher of all.I use acrylic house paint that is very thick to prime my canvases,using a 3 inch good quality brush,use a spray bottle to wet and brush out all lines lightly as it drys.Works great.been doing it for 20 + years.Carson Collins wrote:Another good trick is to use "block filler" as opposed to gesso. This is a trowel-grade acrylic product that is only slightly off-white and is mixed with Bentonite clay. It's used in Commercial Painting to prime concrete block walls, and it's sold in all commercial paint stores. It's a whale of a lot less expensive than gesso from the Art Supply store.
It's sandable (insofar as any acrylic paint product is sandable) - try using an electric-powered buzz-block and watch the acrylic turn into something resembling chewing-gum from the heat - and if you're doing large scale paintings it can save you a considerable amount of money.
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