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Acrylic Abstract Painting Tutorial

Acrylic Abstract Painting Tutorial

In this Acrylic Abstract Painting Tutorial I am going to share with you a step by step breakdown of a terrific abstract landscape. This is a project from the new ‘Abstract Painting Level 1‘ course which provides a great introduction to abstract painting.

Abstract Painting 1

The Abstract Painting Level 1 course is now available for those who want to further explore how to paint abstract paintings in acrylics.

When you join the course you will get the full videos to this project outlined below.

Register For The Abstract Painting Video Course Here

Hurry – Early Bird Price Ends Saturday 1st July

Now lets look at the project and break it down into easy to follow steps for you.

This abstract painting project is being done in acrylics and I am painting on a 16″ x 20″ stretched canvas. I only use one brush for the painting which is a 1″ geso brush with bristle hairs.

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In the first step above I establish a basic drawing. The colours are Cerulean Blue and Titanium White mixed together which will also be our sky colour. As you can see the drawing is very simple just placing in the hill line, larger tree and smaller tree.

I did the drawing quickly and spontaneously. The key is just to identify where the big shapes will go in your painting rather than trying to draw in every detail.

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Then I use the same mix and start to block in the sky.

I want to create lots of movement and life in the sky. So I vary up my brush strokes and use a lot of variety. Also you will notice I am using a lot of paint. This is the key to getting acrylics to paint like oils … use a lot of paint and it will stay wet longer giving you more time to manipulate it.

The other advantage of using a lot of paint is that it allows you to create nice textures in your brush marks.

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As I am using a cool blue for the sky I decided I wanted to contrast this with some warmth in the sky as well.

The mix I have on the palette is Alizarin Crimson + Yellow Ochre + Titanium White. I then work this into the lower part of the sky thinking it will create a great effect against the greens of the trees and the hillside.

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Note that I also work this warmer colour up into the blue section and pull some of the blue sky down into the warmer section of the sky. This is important as it connects the two areas into one integrated sky.

At this point I had too much water in the sky so decide its best to leave it there and come back to it later.

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Moving on to the trees I start to block in the shadow tone for both the large tree and smaller tree.

This is simply a dark mix of Ultramarine Blue with Alizarin Crimson.

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With the trees blocked in I move to the block in of the hill side.

My thinking is that I want the hillside to have lots of vibrant green tones when its finished. As red is the compliment of green I have found it is a good idea to block in with a red earthy tone. When you place the greens over the top they create a harmonious vibrant effect.

Here I am blocking in the hillside with Alizarin Crimson and Yellow Ochre mix.

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After allowing time for everything to dry off I come back and start to develop the green into the hillside.

I want the horizon line to be the brightest green to pull the eye into the painting.

The mix here is Cadmium Yellow with Pthalo Green. Notice I shift between being more on the yellow side then back to more on the green side.

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It is important to also vary your brush strokes.

I have a lot of horizontal strokes running down the hill but I vary that with some vertical strokes as well. And using the edge of the brush I flick up some grass like effects against the shadows of the trees.

Notice how the earthy red under painting is peeking through the more vibrant green grasses.

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Then its time to create highlights and texture into the trees.

I do this with a variety of greens mixed with both my warm and cool blues, warm and cool yellows and alizarin crimson.

The key here is the brush strokes. I just use the bristle hairs on the edge of the brush and swish the brush around to create random yet controlled strokes to resemble foliage on the trees.

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Now that I feel I have the trees working well I switch my focus back to the sky.

By this stage the water that was in the sky has now dried off so I can safely work back into it. I start by working the warm sky tone back into the lower part of the sky and strengthen it here and there.

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Then I take the cooler blue and work it also back into the sky strengthening the parts of the sky that need a stronger cooler blue. And I also work some of it into the warm tone in the lower part of the sky.

Overall I am happy with the finished result as you can see here.

Abstract Wall

This is a terrific painting project to try. It is a good contemporary abstract painting and as you can see in the above photo the finished painting would look great in most people’s homes.

I definitely recommend having a go at this one as its a lot of fun and you can put your own style into it.

If you want to see the full video version of this project and variations of it then …

Register For The Abstract Painting Video Course Here

It is a comprehensive course that introduces the idea of abstract painting in acrylics for beginners.

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Starting An Art Teaching Business

Starting An Art Teaching Business

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One of the best things I have ever done is to start Moore Art School.

Teaching others how to paint, and then seeing them grow and develop as artists through your teaching, is one of the most rewarding careers you can have.

In this article I want to share with you some insights into what it takes to start and run an art teaching business. If you have considered teaching art or starting your own art school then you will want to read every word of this.

The one big take away that I want you to get is that there has never been a better time in history for artists to start teaching art, and with the right guidance you can achieve what ever level of success you desire.

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So let’s start out by asking the most important question of all …

Is Starting An Art Teaching Business Right For You?

It’s important that you think about this.

In order to achieve success you have to be a good fit for teaching art.

First you need a passion for art. If you are a creative person and you love to paint, draw or sculpt then you may be well suited for it.

If teaching art is right for you then its likely that right now all you want to do is create and you daydream about it all the time. And every chance you get you are creatig something.

But the passion for art alone is not enough.

The second key I have found is you have to enjoy working with people. Teaching art is a people business. You will find yourself working closely with students as you help them to learn to paint.

Being personable and relatable helps as it will attract more students to you.

The third key consideration is that teaching art is a business. Now you don’t have to be a hardcore business minded person, however you do have to be mindful that as it is a business you are going to need things like marketing and sales systems to achieve success.

So those are the three things you want to consider:

1/ Do you have the passion for art?
2/ Do you enjoy working with people?
3/ Can you see yourself running a small business?

If you can say YES to each of these then you are on the right track.

Sidenote – Starting an art teaching business is definitely not a get rich quick type of program. If your primary motive is to make money then it probably won’t work out for you.

Now if you have decided that starting and running an art teaching business is for you then let me share with you …

The Number One Key To Success

The number one thing that will determine if you are successful or not in the long run is YOU!

Starting a business and making it successful all comes down to YOU.

When you make the decision to start an art teaching business you take on the responsibility for its success or failure 100%. Sure you can get help and guidance along the way however you are the one who has to get up every day and make it happen.

A big part of this then is investing in the development of yourself.

First your mindset. You need to have an empowered mindset and positive self belief to make it work. So you may need to spend time in personal development.

Personally I spend a lot of time improving myself. For instance I attend Toastmasters regularly to learn how to improve my public speaking ability.

Secondly your skill as an artist.

It is important that you constantly work on developing and improving your skills as an artist. That means continuing to take workshops, courses and of course lots of practice painting.

One golden rule that I have always believed in is you want students to invest in doing your art classes and workshops then you need to be convinced enough of the value in doing so by investing in them yourself.

Personally I take a number of workshops each year with world renowned artists like Kasey Sealy, John Wilson and others.

But what a lot of people don’t know is that I also am a member of a number of online Ateliers and I spend time each day working through these master lessons.

Let me repeat myself then … YOU are the number one factor in whether you will be a success or not. So you need to always be working on you and your mindset and skills.

The Opportunity For Art Teachers

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The opportunity to teach art has never been better in the history of the world. Right now artists have a unique opportunity to start and launch an art teaching business and enjoy success like never before.

Problem is most are not aware of it.

Why?

The Internet has created incredible opportunities for people like you and I.

Twenty years ago it would not have been possible for me to run a successful art business. But because of the Internet you and I can live our dreams of earning an income from our art.

The Internet has done two things:

1/ It has increased the interest in learning to paint. That combined with the baby boomer generation. So there are more people than ever before wanting to learn to paint.

2/ Reach – One of the biggest challenges with any business is being able to attract new customers to you. Now with the Internet that is so much easier. When you learn to embrace social media like Facebook and YouTube you can reach out to new students and attract them to you.

So the opportunity has never been better.

And you can choose to either just teach classes in your local area, or teach online, or do both.

Personally I do both as I like the idea of tapping into a global marketplace with the online model, and I also like the interaction of running classes as well.

The opportunity has never been better than it is right now so if you are thinking of starting then do it right now while it is so good.

Who Will You Teach?

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This is a big question you need to answer.

Who are you going to teach in your new art teaching business?

There are lots of options:

– Kids Art Classes
– Adult Art Classes
– Corporate Team Building Classes
– Art Parties
– Paint & Sip Classes
– Advanced to Professionals

And what skill level will you teach? Beginners, Intermediate, Advanced?

Personally I think the greatest opportunity is in teaching adults who are beginners to intermediate level.

This is by far the biggest market, the easiest to reach and the easiest to teach.

Once you choose a market then I recommend you focus all of your efforts on that one market. Get good at this one market first before entering others.

How Will You Teach Them?

In my early days of wanting to learn to paint I attended lots of different art classes and workshops.

Some with local artists and some with world renowned high profile artists.

And I quickly came to the conclusion that great artists do not necessarily make great art teachers.

I encountered many different approaches including:

* Do your own thing and I will come aroud and see you (maybe!)
* Demonstration of a painting (but really poor explanation)
* Theoretical (Too much theory but little painting done)
* Entertainer (Artist entertains but does not explain)

And much more.

What was missing from most of the classes and workshops was a method of teaching that helped students get results.

Think about it logically … doesn’t it make sense that you want those attending your class or workshop to walk away from the day with a finished painting they are really proud of?

If you can help them achieve that then doesn’t it also make sense that they are far more likely to book into more classes in the future?

So you need a method of teaching that helps them get a finished result.

You can not just wing it as an art teacher and hope for the best … though many have tried this approach.

What Will You Teach Them?
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Once you know who you will teach and how you will teach them you now need to decide what you will teach them.

What medium? Oils, Acrylics, Watercolours, Mixed Media?

And what subjects will you teach them?

Will it be landscapes, seascapes, abstract, portraits, pets, cityscapes?

These are important decisions as the right projects will attract students to you and the wrong ones will not.

Knowing what projects to teach is vital to your success.

By way of example I started out teaching the wet on wet oil painting method.

That was a challenge. After about a year I decided to try teaching a class in acrylics. Then I quickly realised that when teaching beginners it is far easier to do so in acrylics than oils.

Once I made the switch things quickly improved.

It’s Not Just About The Art

I mentioned earlier that you have to appreciate that if you start an art teaching business it is a business.

So you need to learn about starting a running a business as well.

By far the most important part of this is the marketing side of it.

You need to have the right marketing to attract students to you.

It doesn’t matter how good an artist you are … if you can’t market in a way that attracts students then you won’t achieve success.

Artists are not traditionally great at the sales and marketing side of things.

The good news though is that it does not have to be that hard. When you get the right guidance and follow a proven blueprint for success then you can achieve good results from marketing as well.

Expanding Your Business Online

For most people I recommend starting your art teaching business in your local area.

Get some consistent classes up and running and learn how to help your students get good results from your classes and workshops.

From there though you should also consider expanding online.

Right now there are artists making full time livings from sites like YouTube, Patreon, Udemy and more.

When you learn how to create online courses and projects then you can expand exponentially as you tap into a global auidence. There are 2.5 billion people online right now. A massive market.

So developing the online side of your business can help you grow and create new income streams for you.

This is certainly an area that Moore Art School is pushing into further. Having had more than 15,000 students go through our online courses now we are just barely scratching the surface of what is possible.

What About Art Teacher Qualifications?

A question that often comes up is what qualifications do I need to start?

The truth is you don’t need any if you follow my model.

If you want to teach in a school environment like High School for instance and get a job doing this then yes you probably need a teaching degree.

But to start your own art teaching school you do not need any qualifications at all.

Having said that I do recommend getting a certification as an art teacher.

That is how I started. I enrolled in a certification program, did the exercises and assignments and became certified in their method.

It gave me more confidence to make a start and it gave me the rights to represent their method of teaching in my marketplace.

Even though I changed after a year of teaching their method I still think it was invaluable for me to get started.

So I do recommend that you start in a similar way.

Investigate the various certification programs that are out there and decide on the best fit for you. Be aware thought that most do not cover the all important subjects of the business side of art teaching, or sales and marketing.

It’s A Marathon Not A Sprint

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One thing I want to point out is that starting and running a successful art teaching business is a marathon not a sprint.

What I mean by that is that if you expect overnight success with it then you might end up disappointed. It takes time to build up so you need a long term view.

Think about building up success over a 3 to 5 year period of time. Many think in terms of 3 to 5 months but truth is it will take you this long to get started and to start finding a few regulars.

Now you can earn an income along the way … but to build a solid successful business as an art teacher will take time. Be patient and be consistent in your efforts.

I started doing it part time while working full time in jobs. I did this for several years before going full time.

So take a long term view of it and through consistent and persistent action you will get there. Over time the law of compounding efforts will start to work in your favour.

Teach The Moore Method of Painting

Over the last six years I have had the good fortune to teach hundreds of students in one day workshops and more than 15,000 online.

During that time I have worked on developing a methodology of teaching beginners that gets results. That takes a beginner from never having picked up a brush before to being able to finish their first painting that they are proud of.

The Moore Method of Painting has now been proven to work around the world not just in the classes I have taught, but in classes taught by Moore Certified Instructors in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, UK and Saudi Arabia.

The advantage of the Moore Method of Painting is that it simplifies the process of learning to paint down into three colours, three brushes and three steps. This makes it easier to teach those just starting out.

Right now we are looking to expand to even more countries around the world.

I am on a personal mission to spread the Moore Method globally and to reach as many people as possible and help them fulfill their dream of learning to paint.

If what you have read in this article resonates with you and you want to find out more than request an information kit and join us on the upcoming Webinar ‘Starting An Art Teaching Business’

Find out more about the Moore Certified Instructor program – http://www.MooreArtSchool.com/mci

Register for the coming Webinar here – http://mywebinars.net/start-an-art-teaching-business/

Noosa River Reflections

Noosa Art Classes

Noosa Art Classes

Moore Art School are pleased to announce that in July we will be commencing Noosa Art Classes.

Our first art class will be of the Noosa River Reflections and is designed for beginners to intermediate painters. This will be the first of many Noosa Art Classes as we continue to grow.

For all of the details go here – http://mooreartschool.com/events/noosa-river-reflections/

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More Student Success Stories

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Another terrific success story from a first time painter. Here is what Maria had to say:

My name is Maria, I’m 52 years old and a swede currently living in Scotland. I love the way your method of painting gives you courage and encouragement to just Paint! I’ve been dabbling in mixed media abstracts for a long time as a hobby but personal issues made me loose my inspiration.  Following your tutorials and method have got me up and running again. I’ve never painted landscapes before so despite seeing the errors and flaws on my piece, I’m mighty proud of my first effort!
Thank you! / Maria
I love stories like these.
If you haven’t taken our free five day learn to paint course yet then you can do so here:

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Abstract Painting Project Step By Step

Abstract Painting Project Step By Step

Abstract Painting 1

New “Abstract Painting Level 1” Course Launching Soon

In this tutorial I will show you step by step how to create a terrific abstract painting in acrylics.

This project is part of the soon to be released ‘Abstract Painting Level 1‘ course. So if you like this project then it would be worthwhile keeping your eye open for details on the early bird pricing offer when we release the course.

As with all of our courses and projects here at Moore Art School we will be doing this abstract painting project using the Moore Method of Painting.

Of course this being an abstract painting project from the new Abstract Painting Level 1 course, there are going to be some differences. We will be moving away from a realism approach to a level of abstraction. As a result there will be less effort to paint every detail in through out the course and more focus on capturing the feeling of a place or scene.

Note – This is the first of the four projects being taught in the new course. The other projects will be even more abstract and move further from a realism approach.

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We start out (in the above picture) using a 1″ geso brush with bristle hairs. This is the same brush we often use in our projects and courses. The mix of paint is Cereluen Blue with Titanium White. I am using Atelier Interactive Acrylics for this project and painting on a 16″ x 20″ stretched canvas.

After mixing the cool sky colour I start our first step which is to do our basic drawing. In the above I am establishing the horizon line about one third of the way from the top.

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After painting in the horizon line I indicated a small land mass to the left hand side of the painting.

When I stood back to check it appeared the horizon and land mass where too high so I lowered it all down about an inch or so. That completed the drawing step.

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Step two of the Moore Method is the block in step. Using lots of paint I block in the sky area creating a nice cool sky tone. In the video for this project you will note that I really vary my brush strokes a lot to add interest into the sky.

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Next I add Ultramarine Blue to my palette. This is a warmer blue and will be ideal for the larger water area. I mix it with Titanium White. Note that it has to cover two thirds of the canvas so mix plenty of paint up before you start blocking it in.

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The paint was drying off fast so I used my spray bottle to just lightly mist the surface of the canvas. By doing so I give myself extra time to blend the water correctly.

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Now it is time to block in the land mass.

The mix I use for this is basically a dark. So Ultramarine Blue and Alizarin Crimson work fine. I also have Yellow Ochre on the palette (note this is my standard palette) and a touch would have been added in to darken the mix even further.

I mix it using the palette knife which I also use to then apply it to the canvas and form the shape of the land mass. Do not fuss with this too much … keep it a little random and undefined.

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A mix of Yellow Ochre and Titanium White make a great sand colour so I add just a little to the edge of the land mass to create a sandy beach impression.

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It’s time to have some fun and beef this painting up a little.

I mix a warm sky cloud colour. To do this I use the Alizarin Crimson, Yellow Ochre and Titanium White together. Don’t overmix this. Keep the colours a little broken in the mix for added interest.

Then I get a scoop of it on the palette knife and start to fashion in some cloud like shapes. You need to be brave at this stage 🙂

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After shaping up the clouds a little I then create the cloud reflections.

Load the palette knife edge with the warm cloud colour and then place it on the horizon line. Then drag downwards to the bottom of the canvas. Looks great doesn’t it? The key is not to use too much pressure on the knife. Let the weave of the canvas drag the paint off.

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Above I have done something similar with the land reflections. The only difference is I have pushed the dark mix of the land mass a little bluer. Simply add more Ultramarine into the dark mix until it goes bluer. Then use the same technique of dragging the reflection down with the palette knife.

Notice the original blue of the water is still coming through between the reflections.

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With almost pure white and slightly smaller palette knife I indicate some sail boats on the water.

I do one main one and then several smaller ones off in the distance.

The reflections are done using the same technique of dragging the paint down with the knife.

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After standing back and looking at what we had done so far I concluded it was time to reduce the size of the clouds. This was easy to do simply by mixing the sky colour again and just painting back into the clouds. The good thing was it allowed me to shape the clouds in a more interesting way.

I have also done the same with the original water colour using it to shape up the reflections.

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And finally after a few more tweaks I added my signature to it.

Overall a fun project to try at home. Try a few different variations with it and add in your own ideas.

The full video recording of this project will be in the soon to be released Abstract Painting Level 1 course which will be out soon.

Painting abstracts can be a very liberating way to free yourself up, get loose and allow your creative juices to flow freely. By doing so it can only improve all aspects of your painting skills.

Give this one a try or wait until you get the full videos and try it then.

But definitely try abstract painting.

It’s a lot of fun

David Bell

More Student Success Stories

Another fabulous student success story. Well done David. Here is what he had to say …

Rod Moore’s online course is ideal for beginners who want to learn about how to paint. The concepts are simple to understand and the video instructions very clear. Online has the benefit of being able to come back often to try to master each step. He comes across as an inspiring teacher. Best of all he supplies the necessary motivation to keep painting and correct mistakes along the way. Brilliant!