Free Acrylic Painting Tutorials & Art
By Robert Joyner

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Exploring Layers With Acrylics Versus Mixed Media

 
 

Exploring Layers With Acrylics Versus Mixed Media Lesson

In this lesson I will dive into how you can start having fun with layers now that you have a better understanding. I will give you two examples on how you can create exciting layers using a blue building as an example.

Demo One - Starting with the shadows/darks

  • I begin by mixing ultramarine blue, cadmium red and alizarin crimson to create a dark tone.
  • I created the feeling of a building in perspective.
  • Now I allow it to dry.

Demo Two - Staring with crayon

  • I added a feeling of shadow as with the previous demo but this time I used a dark blue crayon.
  • Using yellow acrylics slightly thinned with water I add a ‘pop’ color.
  • Now it’s time to take a break and let the layers dry.

Part Two

Now that the previous layers are dry it’s time to move forward with the next one.

Demo One - Starting with the shadows/darks

I added a layer of light blue using a mixture of titanium white, teal and ultramarine blue. Note I prefer to under mix my colors on the palette. This allows for pockets of each color as opposed to one even tone.

Note when I added the blue I captured the feeling of windows, a sign, door and other features. I didn’t get too caught up in every detail. How you interpret your subjects is totally personal so don't feel obligated to copy what I'm doing. But you can certainly copy to get a feel of the technique and then have fun making it your own.

Demo Two - Staring with crayon

I used a similar light blue mixture and added the same feeling of windows, a sign, door and other features.
Note that when you create an expressive layer such as blue crayon and yellow acrylics it would be a shame to cover it up completely. By allowing some of it to show it gives the building more excitement and energy.

In the next lesson I will show you how you can make the abstract building believable by adding some details. Fun stuff!!

Part Three - Picking Up Where We Left Off...

I’m working on Demo Two - Starting with crayon

  • I add a feeling of a sidewalk
  • Then a street sign

It’s interesting to see how the building starts to become believable once I add these details. The building really comes to life.

Demo One - Starting with the shadows/darks

  • I add some shadows to the windows
  • Then an impression of a sign

Conclusion

There are no limits to how you can express yourself and subjects once you understand layers. How you handle your medium within each layer also has an impact on how interesting your layers can become.

Have fun experimenting with layers. I give you permission & encourage you to doodle and play with these ideas. Avoid creating finished art with these techniques until you spend quality time exploring all the possibilities. Build up your connection to layers and have fun mixing mediums to get a desired finish, or look.

This is where the fun begins. Enjoy!

Exploring Layers With Acrylics Versus Mixed Media