Diane Young ~ Artist ~ Printmaker

Every Picture tells a story.


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Painting In Progress

Lazy Painter’s guide recording Work in Progress

It really depends what medium you work in but even drawings can take on quite a transformation from the outset of the original idea.  Artists may use different tools to progress from the first sketch to the finished drawing or painting.

Drawing tools such as tracing or layout paper, light boxes and/or photo shop manipulation enables the good bits of a drawing to be retained easily whilst the areas in need of change more easily manipulated. With these tools there is a trail of changes which could be recorded digitally or glued in a sketch book to inform the artist at a later date how the work evolved. This sort of recording comes easily.

Painting images showing work in progress

For painting work-in-progress the best tool for recording is a camera. How often I have been too lazy to put down my brush and halt for a few minutes to get the camera and quickly take a picture.

It is impossible to remember the phases of a painting’s evolution and in addition artists repeatedly overshoot the optimum moment for the painting to be finished.

Recording the painting at different stages enables an artist to sit back at a later time and review how each stage of the painting has progressed and make objective decisions for making further paintings.

Don’t overshoot the optimum moment to put the brush down, you know that old adage Less Is More.  It just takes a moment to take a snap, and on review will reap benefits for your next masterpiece!


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Diane Young – Painting Edges

Manic Illustrations – Lazy Painter’s guide.

Anything from not changing the brush to not changing the water,  not being lazy means making less mistakes and mess and is more time effective in the long run.  I could have done with a list being given to me many years and many mistakes ago.

The Lazy Painter from Manic Illustrations says:  don’t be lazy – turn the paper around for best results when painting up to an edge!

Pictures showing how to use a paintbrush up to the edge of a drawing.

When you are painting up to an edge place your paper so that your brush is inside the edge and your brush point is against the edge as in Bunny 1 and Bunny 3 .  So many times I have been too lazy to turn the paper round and would reach over the edge as in Bunny 2.   Bunny 3 is happy to be upside down as it is easy to paint accurately this way.  This is for a right handed person,  for a left hander just flip the images horizontally.


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Stamp Lady Rachel Markwick

Studying Art Process

One of my artist friends who trained on the Access Course at my local College was Rachel Markwick.  For some time she had been painting and explored her craft further on the course.  We had so much fun it was a truly bonding experience for us mature students.

Landscape Rachel Markwick

But simply wanting (and trying) to progress in the art world is often not enough.  For each of us it is a different process and often time has to pass, where creativity takes us to both good and bad places, and may be quite a balancing act where there are commitments other than just a desire to be creative.

From Painting To Collage with Stamps

Then a few years ago Rachel’s creativity took on a completely different look involving her inherited collection of stamps.

Stamp Collage Rachel MarkwickFrom Van Gogh’s sunflowers and hilly scenes of Stroud emerged the Stamp Lady of Stroud.  

There is a story behind the use of stamps in Rachel’s work, but to fast forward somewhat she makes clever, endearing and detailed images from stamps from all over the world. From ships to owls, and from the Leaning Tower of Pisa to International flags there is so much detail right down to the fish in the sea and the people in the arches of the Colosseum. 

Stamps Flag USA by Rachel Markwick

More of Rachel Marwick to be found on her Website.


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A Fish Eat Fish World

Since Wrangling with Originality I have decided to revamp my website, no great shakes the content is still the same but it’s a bit more shop orientated.

Still got a bit to do, but sadly the historical “likes” have gone off my static pages.  I do think though that I should thank everyone who has commented on anything on my site, my wranglings or ramblings and my pics, and with a few tweaks to do I will put thismessage on my site somewhere prominent!

It is a fish eat fish world.

ACEO Originals on Ebay by Diane Young


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Dog Portrait Photographs for a Painting

Dynamic Lines for Composition

I was asked by a friend to paint her endearing little terrier cross called Gus.    Not every photo will make a good painting.  The dog can always look cute, but  the overall shape of the pose can be uninspiring, and less interesting to behold as a final painting.  The outline should be what I would describe as dynamic, that is is must have a variety angles as you would in any interesting composition no matter what the subject.

Gus Commission Dog Portrait

Finding The Photograph for the Dog Portrait

 Getting photos off your client can sometimes be difficult.  They cannot locate them, the ones on their phone are not good enough quality, or the photos they have found do not have that certain “something”.  At this juncture, if you know your client it might be good time to offer to take your camera to them, get out on the common or the park and mooch about taking pics as you go.  You could go for a photo shoot which is a more pressurised environment and may be your only solution, but make sure you snap away and take loads of shots at the dog’s eye level.  It can be difficult for owner to take the best pics of their pooch because their pooch only has eyes for them, the moment they bend to take a good shot Mutley is bounding toward the lens itself!

Gus terrier dog

Cute but…..

The photo here is sooo cute, but look at the outline it is basically an oval.  By accentuating detail in the head  I could have got away with this but it would really be more of a head shot.

This was not what the client had in mind, she wanted Gus on the go which would have been an impossible round indistinguishable shape with all four paws off the ground!

Gus terrier dog

The photo here is not detailed at all and again is a sort of oval shape.

Finally…..

So we settled for an “out in the field” shot, Gus looking very pleased with himself.  I placed Gus centre stage, and enjoyed the detail of showing his happy character.

So if your client is slow to get a photo to you, arrange to get a good number of photos yourself if you can and then offer up the best of what you have which is inspirational for you too.

Gus dog portrait                   Gus Commission Dog Portrait