Daily Paintworks: What you as an artist would like to know about selling online.

Detail of oil painting: “Perky Young Kitten,” (original painting 6×8″) Sold on DailyPaintworks.com.

I’m writing this because now and then (pretty regularly, actually) I get fellow artists asking me how I like DailyPaintworks. Daily Paintworks is a site where original artworks (usually smaller, less expensive works—maybe done “daily”) are sold. I sell my smaller works on Daily Paintworks. When I actually produce new work (sometimes I don’t because life has gotten in the way), I sell okay. I estimate that I’ve sold approximately 2/3rds (maybe a little less) of all my work posted on DailyPaintworks (I’ll call it “DPW” from now on). To me, that’s pretty good. I’m very pleased with DPW.

I’m writing this so that other artists can get the answers they want without having to personally ask. Not that I mind answering questions (I LOVE to ramble!), but I figure that a blog post will reach more people.

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Drawing, and “the degree system.”

This tells you what’s wrong with the current mainstream system. (Artist’s work is presumably by Seymour Fine Art.)

The picture above tells it all. Yes, I know there are exceptions. There are some excellent schools out there that are not trying to “de-skill” art students. But I’m talking about the majority, which apparently are.read more

Things you can do now, to improve your art

“Hot and Cold” 6×8″ oil on Gessobord. Thanks to XNB Creative for the stock photo used as reference!

I’m just sticking a recent painting at the top, to give this blog some sort of picture! LOL. This is a recent painting. I was trying to explore colors and values in this study, as well as warm and cool flesh tones. That’s why the painting is entitled “Hot and Cold” (for the warm and cool colors).

Okay, I thought I’d write a nuts-and-bolts list of advice for any artist who thinks they suck, wishes they were better, but wonders if they ever will get there. (I’m looking at you, Pavina! 😉 )

First, some caveats: I’m still on the journey of trying not to suck myself. Don’t look at my work and assume that I’m implying that I think I’ve ‘arrived.’ I sure haven’t. But I’ve strived to suck a little less each year. That’s all we can do.

Here are some common-sense and oft-agreed-upon tasks you can do to get there. This is assuming that you want to draw and paint realistically and possess more ‘traditional’ skills.

Now, on to the list:read more

An update after a long time

Yep, I’ve been delinquent. Haven’t been to this blog for a long, long time. It can get overwhelming. I have three “main” blogs! That’s too many blogs.

But I’m going to try to be more regular in my updating from now on. We’ll see how that works.

In this post I’m just touching base, posting a few new paintings, and explaining where I’m going from here.

First, the paintings:

“Stare,” 8×8″ oil on Gessobord. Thanks to djwar93 on DeviantArt for the stock photo I used as inspiration!

This was painted last month, and was an exploration of warm and cool light. I also was transfixed by the intense expression on the model’s face.

“Mr. Stinky” oil on panel, 8×8″.

And yes, I do cat portraits too! This is a household cat, who has some Maine Coon in him (we think). This painting was done earlier this year. Mr. Stinky has now fallen ill. 🙁 I’m so glad I did a portrait of him when he was feeling (and looking) healthy.

So anyway, these two paintings were done in the last six months or so, and the improvement I see is mainly due to some much-needed instruction I received from a young, brilliant artist, Adam Clague. I don’t feel I’m a novice in painting, or drawing, but I was dissatisfied with my understanding of color (as in interpreting the color I see) and Adam has helped me immeasurably with that!

So now my blog will not only talk about art materials (a favorite passion) but I can also impart tidbits of wisdom about color, that I’ve gleaned from my time spent learning from Adam. (Thank you again, Adam! 😀 )

What I’ve learned about color is more complex than just “harmonious” color, color combinations and so forth (which I learned in art school and which I think—hope—I understand to some small extent) but the “rules” of how color falls upon the objects we see, what colors turn “warm” and when, what colors turn “cool” and why, and so forth. Understanding these principles makes for more evocative color, more “real” and convincing color. But you don’t throw out what you know about color combinations either, color schemes and so forth. You use all these bits of knowledge to your painting.

Needless to say, my grasp of all of this is still in progress. I feel a bit sheepish, but at the same time supremely excited! To think it took me this long to learn this! And yet this happens all the time, to many artists, of all ages and stages in their art career. And we shouldn’t feel ashamed at all, just grateful and excited that we’re now finally starting to “get” it.

So that’s my update for now. Hopefully from now on, my posts will be a little more regular.

Student Oil Paint—painting on a budget, intro and advice

This is going to be the first in probably many “Budget-Minded and Student” tutorials. One thing I know is that when you’re starting out in art (or even if you’re not) you usually are short on funds. Or maybe you hate to spend a lot, regardless.

In any case, this post is for you.

There’s a lot to cover, so I may end up making several posts about this. Hopefully this post will prove to be a helpful start.


One mistake a lot of newbies and beginners make is to think that because they’re just learning, that they don’t “deserve” anything better yet. Why waste the money? They’re just beginners!read more

Limited Palette – Goth Boy (FINISHED)

Well, as finished as it’s gonna get! Refer to this page (the WIP post for this painting) for info on the color palette used. This was a very fun exercise and I’m fully planning on doing this again!

Goth Boy, oil 4×5″ canvas panel. Thanks to XXMAUROXX on DeviantArt for reference photo.

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“Suspicion” oil study, 8×8 inches

I’ve been doing this series of portrait studies, exploring the expressions or emotions on people’s faces. I call them the “Novela” series, because I’m inspired by those fabulous Spanish-language soap operas and all their drama and campiness!

oil sketch, 8x8 inches

“Suspicion” – oil on a SourceTek oil-primed linen panel, 8×8 inches

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Limited Palette – Gothy guy (WORK IN PROGRESS)

Here is a WORK IN PROGRESS. I actually got quite a bit done with this little oil sketch the other day, but I hesitate to call this finished. There are some areas that definitely need to be tweaked.

Goth guy, oil in 4×5 inch canvas panel, WORK IN PROGRESS

I did this the other night on a whim. Maybe I took an hour on it; I’m not sure.read more

On the phone—Work in Progress

on the phone

“On the telephone” oil on panel, 8×8 inches, WORK IN PROGRESS

I’m trying something a little different with this painting. As you can see, it’s kind of rough and the drawing accuracy needs to be nailed down. (Some parts of her face are crooked. I always do this, always!)read more

“Big Ed” oil sketch 5×7 inches

This is “Big Ed.” I don’t know if Big Ed is done yet. He’s painted in oil, on 5×7″ oil-primed linen panel (Centurion brand, found at Jerry’s Artarama).

Big Ed

“Big Ed,” Work in Progress (almost done) 5×7 inches on oil-primed linen panel.

I’ve been dabbling with this oil sketch for several months now. I started it, then put it away, and now I hope I’m almost finished with it.read more