The Basics of Painting


Painting is a form of visual communication that reflects the artist’s vision. It has undergone many changes over the centuries and continues to grow as an art form today. It can be used to express ideas, emotions and spiritual levels of the human psyche.

Paint is a material that comes in a wide variety of colors and is applied to a surface through a process of drying by chemical reactions. It is composed of three basic parts: a pigment, resin and binder. The pigment provides the color and binds the other ingredients together, making the mixture stable enough to be painted onto a surface.

Traditionally, painting has been used to communicate the emotions and moods of the human spirit and to represent images in a realistic manner. However, modern painting is increasingly using more abstract and esoteric techniques to convey its message.

The first step in learning to paint is to decide on your medium of choice, whether it be watercolor, acrylic, oil or something else. These choices will affect the style of your painting and your experience as a painter.

If you are going to be painting on canvas, it is best to pick a heavier weight, thicker body type of paint such as acrylic. This will allow you to create thick impasto like strokes that will help add texture to the work.

Another important aspect of painting is choosing your color palette. The color palette will determine what paint colors you should use and where they should be placed in the finished piece. For instance, warm colors will look cooler if placed against cool colors, while dark colors will appear lighter in relation to light colors.

Once you have chosen your paints, the next step is to figure out what kind of canvas to use. You can pick from canvas that has a smooth, glossy finish, or you can select one with a matte or textured finish. If you are painting on a canvas that is textured, it will be easier to create smooth transitions between different color layers.

It is also helpful to choose a canvas that is slightly larger than the dimensions of the piece you are painting. This will allow you to paint larger areas without worrying about the paint soaking through the canvas.

In addition to a canvas, you will need a variety of other tools and supplies for painting. These include a brush, paint, paper towels and a tray.

Some of the items you need may seem overwhelming at first, but it’s best to start small and work your way up to a more advanced painting technique. Once you master a few basics, you’ll be able to use the same techniques to paint with different types of materials.

When you are ready to start painting, clear a work area on your floor or in an empty room in your home. You may even want to set up a drop sheet so you can have a clean, dry space to work in.