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Tip Tuesday - How to Break Up With Your Photo Reference

You found it, it's perfect, that scene, vista, photo - is a joy to behold, so surely it would make an awesome painting, right?

Before you pick up that paintbrush ask yourself a few questions.

1) Where is the light source?

2) Where is the horizon located?

3) Is there a hierarchy of shapes?

4) What do the negative shapes look like?

5) How much do you love the local color?

Aw man...but, you really want to paint right now and worry about all that boring stuff later because maybe, this time magic will pour from your brush and a beautiful painting will emerge right?

Um yeah, you might want to rethink that last bit because unfortunately, beautiful paintings don't just happen. They require thought, planning, lots of decision making and even some luck.

Before I start a new piece I ask myself all of the above questions and more. I try to identify problem areas and deal with them in the planning stages instead of when I'm knee deep into the painting process. It makes painting a lot …

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