Fundamentals of Painting

After years of taking and teaching workshops, I’ve come to understand that the fundamentals are important in painting, but are just a means to get you where you want to be with your artwork.    As John Carlson says in his book, John Carlson’s Guide to Landscape Painting, “Art is a thing so much of the imagination, of the soul, that it is difficult to descend to the fundamentals of technique and yet make it plain to the student that these are but the means, and not an end in themselves.  The underlying principles, or fundamentals, should be so hidden anyway by the beauty that they are eventually to support, that it would require much digging to disclose them.”  In other words, they become second nature to the artist and not the main concern every time he or she paints.  A beautiful passage in a painting that looks spontanious and simple will only happen with the knowledge and understanding of the fundamentals of painting.

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