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Live Painting Demo

Lesson 31 from: The Creative Newborn Photography Studio

Julia Kelleher

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Lesson Info

31. Live Painting Demo

Lesson Info

Live Painting Demo

what we're going to do today as faras hand painting is just applying gels okay and this is one of heather's paintings this is kind of what you're going to need for the fine art look and when you apply the dells at first you're going to think you're totally messing after campus you're not the important thing to remember is brushes okay you want durable and synthetic brushes because basically what you're doing is you're painting with glue that's allah gel medium is is an archival glue that dries clear pretty much in fact it's a great glue for mounting campuses and things and in your studio period so there's all kinds of brushes there's brights there's rounds there's fans or slats or stillbirths and there's angles ok and heather photograph this amazing description and showed each one with the yellow a beautiful yellow wash there to show you how each brush behaves okay see you tracked sky wash brush again you track doesn't sponsor me at all but you tracked art dot com is just basically an ...

art supply store and they have this watercolor brush that synthetic and durable and they just can't will go through and I mean they'll suffer anything so these are great brushes to start off with I would suggest getting maybe three or four sizes of differing different sizes tio teo give you that variety in your brush strokes but these air great rushes to start off with joe mediums um I use the golden gels they're fantastic they come in a variety of thicknesses textures and finishes okay so glossy to matt so it's just a thickener for paint so like if you're painting with acrylics and you want to make your paint thicker you would mix it with a gel medium that's what therefore okay that's why they're developed in the art world we're going to be using them by themselves okay um they dry most try clear there's one that does not so you want to stay away from that one but they leave this beautiful texture and it gives the feeling off an oil painting that fine are look gives you that text check your canvass when it dries later okay so there are two controls when it comes to jail mediums there's a texture and the sheen ok so these different gel mediums go from high solid gel down too soft and that's how thick they form peaks okay and how they're took a beautiful picture of this here to kind of show you how like runny or thick each one is does that make sense so some of them are running her than others so like on skin you're gonna want to use them the ones that are a little runny er you don't want a texture on skin but like on pieces like this where we have a lot of fabric and highlights we might want to add a lot of texture in there to create interest okay so the other thing other control is xin okay there's everything from gloss to semi gloss to met matt is the one that you stay away from okay matt does not dry clear a dries white and it looks terrible on your painting so and when you mix it with paint it looks great for applying paint but if you're just going to apply the gel meeting by itself and matt don't use matt if you want a matte painting in the end you'll finish with a spray that's matt okay all right other supplies that you'll need to do this are just a cup of jarrah water water this war I used warm water little you know just like this I had the daniel the assistant here get me a cup of water that's really all you need heather always recommends putting a roll of masking tape and putting the cup and the masking tapes you'll not get over it's actually quite a nice little tip then well and then you also want tape to kind of take down your campus and you could just use a piece of cardboard it doesn't have to be anything major a piece of cardboard works fine you need lots of daylight balance light okay you want to work in an area that's that's got good light okay so you can see what's happening okay so let's go ahead and get into painting here I'm going to go ahead and start off with I'm gonna go ahead and start off with uh thicker texture so you can go see that I'm going to use the high solid gels okay get myself situated here and at first when you first do this you'll freak out what you're doing your campus okay that's kind of why I want to show this and here's what it looks like when you open it up it literally looks like white glue okay and when you dip your brush in it it's sticky and and some gels are easier to work with another's okay this high solid gel is newer and it actually is an amazing medium to work with because it's thick and dries thick but it has a it's some of them are like working as heather calls it like working with snot and it's the heavy gel the gloss this stuff is really thick and it literally is dries quickly as you work and it's become so dewey that it feels like you're rubbing snot on your painting so just watch out for that someone they they all behave differently so the way to do this is to hold your brush you don't want to do dab your painting because then you'll develop these peaks on your painting that are unnatural looking you want to kind of hold your brush at a forty five degree angle and go with the strokes of the of what you painted in corral okay and you're literally just going to cover your canvas and you could do it fairly quickly I mean it's not it's not something that takes a lot of effort or time but some mediums like over here I kind of did a little bit more of ah textural look to the painting so I'm just gonna follow those brush strokes instead of this swoopy ones that I did over here so you just really want to follow the lines it's not that hard to do so over here where I did the the little boys wrap that was on him I'm gonna lay it on pretty thick and really create that texture and let it dry like that okay so you can see it's kind of stiff is sticking up I can switch to a softer medium like go to the extreme other end softshell gloss is a very flat and got it all over me paper tells her to think I wanted to um very it levels when it dries so as it sits on the campus it's very light and soft you can see it's a lot water here so this is where I would use on the face because I don't want things to be too um textured on the face now if you study fine art if you study fine arts in and go to museums and I strongly recommend going to museums you will look at paintings in a whole new light because you'll start to look at them for their texture and what you'll discover is that highlights are often lifted so the brighter parts and it's so beautiful when you see an artist do this and it just makes my heart sing when I do this and andrew wyatt does this a lot of his paintings where you'll see the highlights will be lighter or or higher on the canvas then the shadows and it really makes the highlights come forward in the shadows recede so that's the kind of effect we're going for a thank you secret person who just came running in that's awesome so you can kind of go back and forth and you can put multiple layers on keep in mind that once this starts to dry don't touch it don't go back and start fussing with it because you'll screw it up trust me it'll get all gooey and dickie and you'll be like how did I just do and we'll look bad okay so I'm gonna go back to my height solid gel with a smaller brush and creating some texture in these highlights this is actually very cathartic we'll start loving this will be like us is so nice and it takes doing this once or twice to feel where you want the texture and it takes doing this once or twice to really understand how the gel works and um how it's gonna dry does that make sense so you can already see this is starting to dry over here if I messed with that it would just get all gooey and nasty ok in fact I should probably do it just to show you guys what happens yeah ebony teo makes the brushes or used a different name oh yeah and that's the fun is different brushes will apply different sects like sometimes I'll take a fan brush like on a on a feature that's round I'll take a band brush and just like twisted on the area to create a different look on my painting does that make sense so yeah it's just like in painter your brushes all behave in different ways so how do you want to let those brushes express themselves on the campus okay yeah you hating on is that the kid in canton by now that's a good question I should have I should have addressed that before I am I print my own campus at work I have a naps and ninety eight hundred printer so I fire off these campuses that's really nice is good creates the luxury of if you make a mistake you just go back and redo it if you do print your own canvas it's really important this is too dry mess it up it's really important to spray it initially and what I do is I spray it with just to protect it with the hana mula protective spray this stuff is great it doesn't change the sheen of your view whatever you're spraying on it it's just a protective straight spray to kind of set the ink so that when you go to paint on it the bank jet printer won't the ink won't lift off the canvas one of the great things to do is to you're very lab I mean they coat canvases before they send them to you so when a lab sends you a canvas like mounted on masonite it's ready to go you have to do anything to it just start painting out just start applying gel to it and it's it's done ok now afterwards if you want to change the finish because this is high solid gel gloss so this is going to drive very glassy on the canvas if I wanted to tone that down I could spray varnish it with some with a different finish keep in mind these suckers air caustic it smells bad it's not good to breathe in cover your mouth do it in a ventilated area if you're going to do it and be very careful about this stuff because it's it's nasty okay so just watch that but this is a mat spray so if I wanted to get rid of the gloss and make it matt when all this is dry I would just spray it with this and that would tone down the xin a lot okay I think we do have more questions I saw awesome but I think people would have a lot of questions raised over here when you're done do you have to cover one hundred percent of the image with joe you don't necessarily especially if you're going to spray over the top of it even out the finish but I usually do cover the whole thing and I'm totally painting and random random right now when I do this because I want to show you the different areas that I would how I would paint something in a different area but if I was going to do this at home I would start with my background first finish the background and then go to the details in the face then if I really felt like you know when this dries if it's not enough texture for me at another layer it takes about twenty four to forty eight hours to dry fully then if you want to go back and go oh I want things to be hired comply more you couldn't go crazy I mean you could just make this look so cool with textural stuff on it then if you really want to get good at this you start learning how to mix acrylic paints colored paints using titanium white zinc white I mean there's hundreds of colors I mean if you guys saw my instagram feed I went into like art supply that day and they had a huge wall of gold paint from home and you're going to heaven there's so many colors it's ridiculous so you can learn how to mix acrylic paint and then you max the color tones to your image and start applying riel paint is a matter of fact I have a piece if lacey wants to bring that over to me I'll show you guys well see I must fill my water it's good to have ah um thank you it's good to have a masking tape so you don't do that so this is a finished piece that has not only the gels applied to it but this paint color right here was not in the original image that's acrylic paint that was applied guys can you see that I need to move this so you can see the texture in it you good with that sam awesome so there's not only the xin from the gel but there's also the actual paint that was applied skin is so hard to mix mixing skin color with acrylic paint is something that I don't know if I'll ever master it is so hard so oftentimes I'll just leave this kid alone I'll just do the gel on that and not touch it and just paint the colors in the hair but you could if you look in here there's a little dusty it's been seeing my studio there is we mixed brown's toe add to her hair there's pinks in the background that weren't in the original digital image okay you can have a boatload of fun with this and all of a sudden what was used to be just a simple photograph is now a work of fine art that has your heart and soul in your unique style into it that your clients are I mean this does not go away your client will never take this off their wall this is an heirloom that this these two children are going to fight over this print who gets it you know what I mean this is so special and so much emotion in it that there's no way I mean once your clients understand the value in this and how deeply this has art and emotion in it that you can charge about load do I sell the lot to three times a year at the most not very often but they're all of my studio and it's elevated our brand to a fine art brand people walk in the studio and even if they're just doing a simple knew more in session they see that we do this and all of a sudden the trust in us and what we're capable of just went up five noxious so if anything this will increase your brand and you remember we talked last night at dinner we talked about branding and how just appearing expensive is enough learning this techniques and how to do this will make you appear expensive okay so the cost of a session all of a sudden becomes nothing because well they're the best you see what they do do you see what they produce we can't afford that kind of thing but we're sure it's not going to go to them for our newborn session okay yeah steven in addition to the canvas so they're in the other mediums that you paint on or is it limited to canvass you know it's a good question I've only ever painted on canvas I know you can paint what heather has since this really dusty my god heather does charcoal con tape drawings like she was a beautiful drawing of a little girl she did from a photograph a black and white photograph she did it in corral with pencils and charcoal so it looks like a charcoal drawing then you can print that on like watercolor paper and then take true charcoal sze to it mixed meat where all this is all mixed medium stuff why can't you do that and give it that three dimensional feeling in quality so you don't have to use use yeah do use gels why can't you take charcoal ls and apply that to a charcoal drawing that you did in karol painter based on a photograph so now all of a sudden you don't have to be the skilled drawer artist who knows how to do portrait faces perfectly from scratch you could do it from a photograph which is what we're all pretty good at and create works of art that resemble nothing like a photograph I mean would you think this was a photograph no so now all of a sudden it's not just about taking a photograph yeah back when I looked at it closely of the baby is that gel on it the shimmery no that's a good question and then around the edges it has that shimmery yeah attention try to take this off the wall show you guys this oh can I take this off the walls it kind of looks like it's just kind of thinking there oh it's just like okay just take it off so this is these this is actually just a photograph okay what's been done is it's been paint it's been printed on watercolor paper then the edge has been tourney so you literally just take a flat ruler on the edge of your print and rip it's a little scary the first time you do it but once you get to know each paper has a different feel and it's called heckling and ej d ck deck allowing an edge and a few youtube it there's a bunch of different people showing you how to deck on it then what I do is I take um paints they're in my box over there I I have these they're just folk art painted government michael's or joan's or whatever you choose him too you use them to do told painting ever seen those little acrylic tart there there come in metallic colors which is a really cool so then I just there's photos on my facebook page of me at my craft table at work just hand painting the edge so I take those metallic paints based on what I like what you know what fits the image and I'm painting all around the duck alleged because otherwise it's a white edge and it's a little too harsh against the thanks and that's awesome look at you guys finding all this stuff for me um this is what I use is just the little these common any kind of craft supply store and they have them in metallic colors which is what I love so much and then I just take a little tiny brush and paint the edges and then all this is his float mounted on a mat so I picked the gray color to match his little wrap this is just foam board back here that's all that isthe okay it's quarter inch foam core it's been glued down with this soft job loss because it levels and flattens so it doesn't get bumpy underneath and this is archival glue solid this is glue your painting with glue ok so it works great for these kind of things to use brush it on there and then the matting we haven't I just bought a mat cutter from michael's you learn how to cut mats on your own and then the matter is the quarter inch foam cores down there to toe lift the map off the surface and it's putting a frame that's it all it is so it's a photograph that's just had the edge painted after it's been torn I answer your question but you know what's interesting no one's doing this a lot of work you know how much this costs in my studio seven hundred dollars for one piece I sell these at least once a month at least once a month more like twice seven hundred to sell or seven hard to make it seven hundred itself people without my customer wants to buy it it cost him seven hundred dollars for this size the next day I only do this size in twenty by twenty four and it is a thousand dollars for the twenty twenty four it comes framed with glass in it this doesn't have glass because I like my clients to able to touch and feel and see but it comes with glass you know an anti glare glass in it and that's it and it's such an art piece my clients are like that's what I want on my wallet all of a sudden takes a photograph from just a digital file to something that's so much more than that and I think with educating our clients to do that again it's all about elevating the brand so that you become the its studio well they're the best they're the artist and educating your client that printing is worth it that if you're going to spend the money on a professional photographer where the heck wouldn't you have stuff printed why would you leave it on a disk somewhere in a drawer what a silly notion I say that to my client's I'm like you know obviously I say it nicer but what the heck do you think it but um educating them with that is so critical and telling them how much the print is worth it and all of our marquis mills I mean if you guys want to I sell all my stuff to photographers so if you want all of our market materials and pricing guides known as you can find it on our site but the wording and there is all about printing you have to educate your clients it's just a simple is that any other questions how we doing is their stuff on the internet that I should be addressing um I think people are really getting excited about this stuff good questions air sort of all over the place the board you know that we haven't in studio question you guys get dibs you have the capability to print yourself the water color yes prince are there any recommendations reputable people reputable people that you recommend oh yeah white house custom color is my lab they do velvet fine art prints are the same thing as watercolor obviously you're going to spend more for it and you got to rip that edge which can people move just paid a lot of money for this britain I gotta rip the edge I would suggest before you order from a lab by goto a paper you know you can go online to like absent or any of those companies that sell paper and buy some paper and practice ripping so you're not ripping your actual print um and then once you get your expensive print from the lab you'll be more confident in ripping it because you got one shot kind of thing it's it's not as hard as you think and a straight ruler works the best they have these special deck ling rulers but a straight ruler to me has the prettiest simplest edge and then just paint it and that's what really sends it from mediocre tah toe up top yeah a question from the internet photo net is wondering how long do you wait for the canvas to dry after printing it in order to start painting on it well I use lecture instant dry satin canvas and it drives immediately off the printer so I just spray it with like I said this hannah meal a protective spray and this takes twenty minutes to dry the most and then his fire away so it doesn't take long at all and then can I follow up with another question of course just from me but also other people on the internet and actually it was inspired by a question that I saw about just ordering a stretched canvas from one of your labs you know w c c or whatever you use at home if people do that what do you recommend can you just start painting over one of those totally and you could do gallery rap campus or mounted mason man mounted on masonite um gallery up campus works just fine I'd be a little careful that you don't push too hard because you're getting your canvas wet by by applying the paint to it or the gel to it excuse me so just keep that in mind that that will that affects the campus is stretched so adding moisture to the canvas and obviously you're applying it on top of a sealed coded campus so it's not going to actually penetrate the canvas but it's going to make it heavier so keep that in mind with the gallery wrap the impact that will have but yeah you could do it on gala wraps you can do it on campus smelling on masonite straight from your lab you don't have to spray anything just bring it in on rapid start start yelling and a question from tough tootle is it possible to use a photo straight from photo shop do you need the coral painter step to make the gels makes sense that's a really good question you can you could totally try it and I've seen up I've seen are just do that and I would just be very careful about uh yeah you totally can't because think about it remember back in the days when labs would do it for you they would but they really are systematic about their texture in the background so they would make the texture very uniform in the background and then keep it not quite so textural like they if when I painted here over here I was very too smooth and soft about it when I got here I was like all about the texture and wanting things to lift up off the surface of the canvas so if you're doing a photograph I would tend to be a little smoother all over than making things have texture because it would look funny someone wanted to print at home like you do what what are they looking for in a printer good question printing is a whole nother world um I was really frustrated the reason I started printing was because I got a huge hospital display that I had to print seventy canvases for forty inch campuses for and I thought well if I can spend fifty dollars a canvas doing myself or I can order two hundred dollars a campus from my lab and so I was like if I do it all have the printer left over to do projects with and I was also getting into print competition very heavily and once you start getting into print competition and you realize how particular you can be about how you print things it becomes a little bit of an obsession at least for me it did so that was twofold reasons why I got a printer I actually went with aps in um ah friend well an acquaintance of mine I took a painter class from heather down in santa cruz and one of the gentleman in the in the course was selling his his ninety eight hundred and he had taken just immaculate care of it so I went ahead and went with epson the print driver on the apps and printers drove me crazy because of my lack of technical skill and knowledge about printing then my friend tiffany introduced me to color right rip software which all of sudden made color calibration and management so much easier that software is twenty five hundred dollars for the upset so not only did I have to buy the printer but I had to buy the software to that was a huge investment looking back it was so worth it but I kind of chose epson because the guy was had this great amazing printer that was in fantastic condition and have been treated well so I went with absent cannon apparently makes amazing printers to and I've heard rumors that their color caliber there salt that's easier to use to get color right on epson on a on a cannon there are a bunch of different hunters out there it's just a matter of how big you want to print george the guy who prints in the south who is heather's friend he said go big or go home and I went well why he goes well because once you realise you're limited with a twenty four inch printer it'll drive you crazy and you want to print bigger and let me tell you when your stuff comes off the printer and a forty inches you're just like it's really like a big you know it's it's very invigorating so it's a personal choice andi I would strongly encourage you to visit gold trade show and visit all the different printer vendor's and really get a feel for how they're printer's working operate and find somebody who knows how to print and kind of minty under them tto learn how to do it because it's not easy to learn its huge learning learning curve as well yeah can you order the canvas not stretched and then stretching yourself after you've done painting totally yeah I stretch all my all my display campuses that I do for hospitals and I'd be doing something like that they we struck them all ourselves breathing color dot com is a great resource for paper they also have this great stretching tool that allows you to stretch canvases by hand easily and you khun spend thousands on this stuff you can get a tense adore stretcher that has a compressor and stretches I mean just depends on how much volume you're doing but I've done probably two hundred campuses stretched by hand and you can do it it's not it takes a little time is muscle but that's it

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Norma Martiri

Julia is amazing and has delivered a brilliant class here. Her wealth of knowledge and positive energy is inspiring to say the least. Julia is a brilliant teacher and I've learned so much. I am so grateful to Julia and to Creative Live for recording this and for the fact the I can rewatch over and over from the other side of the world. Thank you!!!!!!


Amazing course! I love it! I will for sure be re-watching it very soon. Julia is brilliant, honest, unselfish and just a great inspiration. This course definitely has given me the boost I needed to be true to my style. Thank you!


I've had the privilege of attending a few of Julia Kelleher's workshops and I love them. She's a great instructor with a cheerful disposition and a great sense of humor. Julia's photographic genius is like no other. This truly talented woman creates masterpieces out of her photos. It is really amazing to watch. I'm beginning to collect her workshops b/c for me attending her workshops is not enough. I have to own them so I may go over them again and again.

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