Creating Depth in Wildlife, Bird & Flower Paintings – Fine Art Acrylic or Oil Tutorial by Ryn Shell


I Hello, I am Ryn. Welcome to my studio I’ve been working on my caricature in my other channel, CARICATURE. That’s why you haven’t seen me around for a few weeks. If you look in the comments You’ll see the link to that channel which has more craft style of painting.
If you are after fine art, that’s what I’ll be doing from this channel. I have been working on a painting of an Eastern Rosella. I love this painting. I have to thank John who I found on Twitter, as he has allowed me to use this photograph. There will be a link to his Twitter account in the comments too. I just love this painting. My pear tree was in flower. I referenced the live flower as well as the photograph when I worked on the painting. I’ve worked on the colorings and also the glazing and composition details. Some of the things that I’ve been doing in this month: I’ve had a lot of help from people and I’ve basically laid out my studio with more space and separate areas for each of the art mediums I work with. I’ve been a professional artist for 65 or more years. I taught art for 45 years-48 years including teaching online. I have a lot of art materials. It’s helpful to have separate areas for oil painting supplies, another for watercolors, others for each of the other mediums. I have a lot of different set up.
I have the one corner I work in which has a beautiful reclining armchair and daylight. Everything is set up near my camera where I work. I take the medium that I’m working with to the work area on a trolley. I sit in comfort with natural or artificial daylight to do my demonstration work for you. I’m loving it. Going through the process of how I’ve created this painting of the Eastern, Rosella. I used 1/3 meter square gallery wrapped canvas. I’ve used artists’ quality structure formula acrylics and applied them in the brush technique use with oil paints. If I was young with stamina to paint for longer sessions I would have chosen to use oil paint for this painting I like to wet into wet, which would have meant that I’d have worked for about 10 to 16 hours a day for about three days to complete the painting while wet. Now, I need to take shorter painting sessions. I’ve worked in acrylic paint which has allowed me to do a good job in short sessions over a longer period of time. I copied the photograph. Then I diffused the background. I wanted to make the background look deeper. I wanted to soften The blossoms of the back at the back of the main focal point of the painting which is the Eastern Rosella.
That’s why I’ve glazed this painting. I’ve also glazed of the blossoms in the foreground Then I detail on top of them to bring those forward. My plan was to place dramatic attention on the Rosella. The major work that I have done is to soften the white blossom behind the Rosales head. The Rosella’s head is red the opposite of red is green, so I’ve muted that with a muted green that pushed the blossom back slightly out of focus so you focus on the Rosella’s head. Then I worked on the Rosella’s beak. I’ve put more sunlight or light onto that beak to brightened it to bring it further forward. There’s a blossom off to the side of it which I felt was attracting the eye and so I’ve also muted that blossom. The majority of my work has been in pushing the bringing the Rosella more into focus. So that explains the work that I have done. The photograph was excellent. I couldn’t improved on the photographer’s composition. I’ve completed a painting where the brushstrokes are visible so that you can see that it isn’t a photograph I’m not into photo-realist art. I like to see the artists’ brush work in art. I’ve glazed the painting and done some extra softening of the background where it needed a little bit of catch light along the top edge of the Rosella I use lemon yellow and white for the catch light line and to highlight the beak. The Rosella’s claw— there were not a lot of difference between the claw and the branches, So I put a highlight on the claw to make it stand out separate it to the branches. More focus of light and shade on the claw. I’m happy with it. A lot of that comes from having an excellent subject to paint in the first place. What makes it award-winning painting is not just the painting technique It’s having a beautiful subject.
Thank you again, to the photographer, John. I’m thrilled to have had the opportunity to paint this beautiful subject. and there’s more to come, to give you more value. I’ll now show you how I glazed and detailed the acrylic painting of the wallaby. I’ll talk you through the stages of the painting. Began in the same way as I did with the Rosella painting by painting a detailed painting It isn’t a total copy of the photograph, because I made the background simpler. I also added water. which wasn’t in the photograph. I painted the wallaby first. on canvas. I left the stretching of the canvas to be done after the painting was finished. You can paint on canvas either the sheet canvas or stretched canvas. I’m mixing cadmium orange with a glazing medium and I’m painting it on very thinly I’m wanting to push the background of this painting further back in the distance. Australian wildlife is Mostly nocturnal. I want to make evening or night. I put the glaze over as a back of the wallaby because the Wallaby is coming towards you, and I want the tail to look like a it is receding further back than the head I’m work on the aerial perspective— the feeling of the layers of air that give a painting depth. I want people to feel as if they could plunge their hand into a painting. Claude Monet’s beautiful impressionistic paintings show that he was a master at creating that feeling of depth in a painting. Look at his water lily paintings, not the photographs, not the prints, but a real painting, if you ever get an opportunity. When you see those big paintings from across the room, you to feel as if you could plunge your hand into that pool. That that’s what I’m striving to create. The artist is always striving to do the impossible. We want to get three-dimensions into this two-dimensional painting.
I throw my orange on too bright. It is easy wipe it off. That’s the beauty of working with acrylic paint rather than oil paint, as it is easyier to wipe off. The orange will not be staying bright orange like that. I am layering this in glazes. I’m starting off with the cadmium orange. I mute that by putting the opposite colour with it shortly and that will be blue. Each time I go in, I mix a bit of the paint with the glazing medium. I may or may not put a bit of white in the mix.
If you are working with oil paint you need to follow the rules of ‘fat over lean,’ and ‘thick over thin.’ If you are putting an oil glaze down, add a little bit of titanium white with that glaze. The reason is titanium white is one of the colors least likely to crack. Darker colors are the most likely to crack. If you were glazing a thin a layer of a dark paint on an oil painting you’re going to have a painting that cracks— probably within six months Paint chemistry is something that’s not often taught on YouTube. The rules are there to help you create an archival quality painting. I work with the best quality artist quality paint. I used Windsor Newton artists’ quality for the Rosella painting. I also used to some of the Matisse brand, which is another high quality paint, provided, of course, you get the artist quality and not a student grade. Most companies will put out a student grade and an artist quality so check with your paint distributor which is the best paint. Use the best quality paint if you want to do quality work. The grey I’m mixing is a lovely muted grey It’s not a cold gray like you would get if you miked it with black. I’m using blue and orange to mix these muted colors, producing varying degrees of colour from muted apricot through to muted blues, to what you might call a tan color. There’s a luminosity to the mixes because the paint is not fully mixed together. I’m applying varying tints of this glaze and varying tones of light and shade. I’m after trying to capture this feeling that this is evening that this wallaby is hopping out of the dark bush across this water, and there is moonlight. I’m wanting to have the glow of dusk or the moon is highlighting the wallaby. I’ve left the water very boldly painted. I’ve left the background trees, the bush abstractly painted because the focus needs to be on the main focal point. I wanted the eye to hit the main focal point with both of these paintings This is a redneck wallaby. The beautiful eastern Rosella in the Nashi pear tree and the wallaby painting have a similar composition. The head of the wallaby of their Eastern. Rosella is off-center. It’s also not close to any of the sides, The focal points are not near the painting’s center. Look at the difference glazing made to this work. If I helped you anyway, please subscribe to my channel, give it a thumbs up and hit the notification bell so you’re notified of my next tutorial. I’ll be back

6 comments

  • Ryn Shell: Artist, Novelist & Vlogger

    Eastern Rosella in Nashi Pear Blossom | acrylic on stretched canvas | size x size inches – 33cm size x 33 cm size.
    Thank you to wildlife photographers John L (Twitter) @jclee19655
    for the Eastern Rosella image and Philip Woodhouse for the Wallaby Joey image and permission for me to paint your image.
    CARICATURE YouTube Channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSJo68NE8Yh3d2lLIAse3xw
    MENTORED TUITION (when available) : http://PaintwithJoy.Studio
    ORIGINAL PAINTINGS, NOVELS: https://www.RynShell.com

    Reply
  • Zara Altair

    Detail makes a difference. All your years verify the details.

    Reply
  • Margaret Lake

    You know how I love your bird paintings. I have two of them framed (Fine Art America) on my walls where I can see them all the time.

    Reply
  • Pyrography Made Easy

    Hello Ryn,
    both of these paintings are beautiful. It is very interesting to me how glazing can alter a painting.
    The Rosella just pops from the canvas and is so colorful. It is a very stunning looking bird.
    The wallaby looks like it is going to hop right off the canvas and into my room. Fantastic work!

    Reply
  • Samrat Art

    You are awesome πŸ‘ πŸ‘

    Reply
  • Draw with Jonny

    Hi Ryn, both of these painting are beautiful work my friend πŸ˜πŸ‘ŒπŸ‘

    Reply

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