Wednesday, February 26, 2014

List of my top 10 Studio Tips

Top 10 studio tips of February-

I have been collecting ideas like this for a while now. I don't have a new painting to post so I thought this would be a good time to share some studio tips I have found useful. 

Tip  1 - Use Pinterest:
My first tip is to use the website Pinterest as your personal museum or art library or studio/inspiration peg board. There isn't anything better on the web for artists to browse millions of paintings. No text just  images.

Tip 2 - Use rubbing alcohol to clean your palette.
Nothing wastes more money than  using turps to clean up. Alcohol does a better job and is only pennies  compared to  dollars for turps.

Tip 3 - Use Phone books as disposable brush cleaner
And they are free! after wiping your brush  just tear off the page and use the next one. After a while the binding will develop a rough edge that helps clean the brush even better.

Tip 4 - A dollar a brush
You can get brushes like these for $1 at almost any hardware store.  I use them for scrubbing in my big shapes, laying in washes or blocking in my composition. Sometimes I use them on color studies just to  keep everything very loose. Seems when you use one of these cheap brushes you automatically allow yourself be more expressive with your brush strokes

Tip 5 - Put a sock on it
This is especially good when painting outside.Wear a sock on your hand instead of holding a paper towel. Helps in cold weather too!

Tip 6 - Old brush handles
I have brushes that have grown old  and are loosing their hair.(like some artists I know). Or they fall apart. I keep the handles, sometimes sharpening them in a pencil sharpener. I use them as scrapers for lines and details.

Tip 7 - Make a miniature gallery
This can work on top of a dresser or just one wall, but keep your current art work (sketches, color studies or not-quite-finished paintings out in front of you. You can quickly judge which ones have potential or which should be  recycled.  It also helps you see how far behind schedule you are in finishing anything.

Tip 8 - A special showplace
I find it absolutely necessary to view each piece I am working on in another area other than the studio. Having a place to hang work, even if only for a few hours in different light and in a different room helps me  spot what needs to be worked on next. Warning: If hanging in the living room, be sure to get permission first and make sure it hangs straight.
Tip 9- Read the books you have
Don't buy another art book or magazine until you have completed reading and studying one you already have at home. There was a reason you bought that book.....( no further explanation needed.)

Tip 10- Sketch books for thumbnails and ideas
by far the cheapest and most valuable tip is the cost of a pencil and a piece of paper. Any piece of scrap will do. Just use them. Sketch, scribble, doodle, copy work from other artists... ideas can only come to life if they leave your head through your hand.


jimserrettstudio said...
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jimserrettstudio said...

Great tips, funny how some of the best ones are so simple. Back when I was hand lettering every sign writer had a couple of phone books just for what you are doing and for wrapping brushes. We would clean our brushes on the yellow pages, deep the bristles in a little brush oil and lay them in a pan until tomorrow. These days good luck finding a phone book. Thanks for a fun post.

Debbie said...

Thank you for your tips ( and fun comments along with them) some good things to remember, and try out :)

Barbara P said...

Good tips. Thanks.

Now, back to finish those books... :-)

Susan Cushing said...

Thank you for taking the time to write up the tips. All useful and the one about reading the book you have hit its mark with me! Love to buy them then forget about doing the work of studying them.

Judy P. said...

Great tips, some I've heard already, but rubbing alcohol! I must try that one.
By the way, your miniature gallery is looking pretty sharp, nice paintings. said...

Peter, These are great tips! What wood did you use to make the little miniature gallery shelf with? Thanks!

Peter Yesis said...

Thanks all- I used a 1x2 piece of wood screwed into the wall onto the studs, then painted. perfect for small paintings. To keep bigger paintings from tipping off use small tacks in the wall at the top of the painting, or use a wider 2"x4 as the shelf. said...

Thanks, Peter re: shelf. So, you don't put any ridge or lip to keep from falling off?

I'll try to learn how to not be "unknown." For now,

Susan H.

Love your blog, btw!

doctoring in arts said...

great tips.. I love the idea of making a small gallery. gives me a sense of satisfaction of what I have achieved than to see what I have failed..