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Blog Comments posted by ChrisDowning

  1. Using high quality paper is an absolute must. Arches is my favorite. I'd suggest getting a small block of both hot and cold press. They are different and each has it's advantages and disadvantages, in the end it's going to come down to your preference.

    Good brushes make everything a bit easier as well. Winsor and Newton series 7 are what I use and they are pretty amazing, a little pricey but if you are careful with them they will last a long time. Again, brushes are going to come down to preference, get a bunch and see what you like. I would look at the mid range synthetic's to start, they come in a really wide range of stiffness and texture and will let you try lots of stuff and not break the bank. Avoid the super cheap bargain packs generally they are pretty terrible.

    Dr. Ph Martins are probably the easiest to blend with and use in general. As mentioned before they are not light fast and they fade pretty damn fast if you hand something up anywhere near a window. FW liquid acrylics work very well and I use them quite a bit. Liquitex also has a line of acrylic inks, they seem to have a lighter pigment load then the FW's which can be nice sometimes. My biggest complaint about the FW inks is that they vary a ton from color to color, the opacity isn't very consistent so doing a test sheet is a must until you remember about how much water you are using for each color. Some of the FW's will separate as well so make sure you shake the hell outa them before you use them. I only have a few Liquitex colors, but the ones I have are quite consistent. Starbrite (the tattoo ink) Canary Yellow kicks serious ass for painting as well, I haven't tattooed with it in a couple years, but I still order it to paint with.

    Start small and study painting's you like. Do lots of smaller painting you can finish in a sitting, and finish them. Taking on bigger stuff can get frustrating if you are having a tough time and it's important to actually complete the paintings even if you screw them up 10 minutes in. Really pay attention to what you are doing, every move you make should be deliberate. If you focus on working like that you will improve much faster.

    Best of luck to you! Have lots of fun!