What Is The Purpose Of Painting A Still Life?

For most of my artistic life I’ve wondered what the purpose of painting a still life was. In school, I found them to be the most boring subjects of all and a waste of time. They felt painful to work on and I had a lot of resistance to drawing and painting them. Portraits were my sweet spot and I loved the challenge of capturing someone’s essence on canvas.

Things started to change for me this year when I took up painting again. I knew I would be staying home more because both of my dogs were very ill and I needed something positive to put my mind to.

Teapot with Persimmon painting

Teapot with Persimmon 14″ x 11″ Acrylic on canvas 2017

Seeing Still Life Differently

Much to my surprise, I had discovered that “realism” was back as an art form. I was always a realist painter but modern art was more acceptable as “real art”, so I floundered around a lot not knowing where to put my

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Creative and Artistic Halloween Invitations

Since Fall has arrived, I thought I’d share some really cool creative and artistic Halloween invitations that I found on Zazzle along with one quick pumpkin study to kick off the season.

Pumpkin Study by Shelley Hanna

Pumpkin Study painting in ArtRage

Pumpkin Study: Having Fun In ArtRage

In a previous post, I talked a bit about digital art and a couple programs I’ve been using. ArtRage continues to be the program I reach for when I want to paint. Above is a quick study of a pumpkin I did to celebrate

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Portrait Of A Dog And The Gifts Dogs Give Us Unconditionally

Last weekend I continued working on my digital painting skills by doing this portrait of a dog named Scoby. If you’ve ever drank kombucha, you may understand his name a little better. His momma, Donna Schwenk, is the founder of Cultured Food Life and is a dear friend.

Portrait study of a dog named Scoby

This is a portrait study of a dog named Scoby painted digitally in ArtRage

I got to meet Scoby last year when I had a leak in my roof. Donna’s husband, Ron, came to my rescue to fix it and brought the mighty Scoby along. Apparently, he goes everywhere with Ron and is obsessed with him. The reference photo I took for

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Learning How To Do Fine Art Painting Using Procreate And ArtRage

I’m finally learning how to do fine art painting using Procreate and ArtRage with the iPad Pro. I resisted getting an iPad for SO LONG and was one of those traditional snobs who thought “digital art wasn’t real art”. BUT, the world is changing and my mind is changing regarding the subject. Bottom line, I’m coming to realize there is a definitely a place for digital art in today’s world. 

Cheating or not cheating?

Using a reference photo in ArtRage

Using a reference photo inside Artrage

To me I thought it was too easy to cheat or difficult to do very “painterly” art digitally based on some of the work I’ve seen out there. However, there are a lot of ways to create whatever effect you want with the tools inside the programs.

There definitely is an opportunity to “cheat” by being able to trace images and color select right off reference photos, however, it’s still the artist that brings their unique skill set and interpretation of the subject to life using the tools in the program just like you would use paint and a brush.

Values and color

Selecting colors from the reference photo is helpful for learning values, but you need to have knowledge of what color to start with in order to create blended colors. Selecting a

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