Oil Painting : So You Want To Be An Artist?

 Oil Painting : So You Want To Be An Artist?


In this section on Oil Painting…

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I will share some of the things I did while pursuing an career as an artist…Perhaps you need a place to ‘start’ when you feel that the artwork you’ve done is ready to be considered professional and would be considered ‘ready’ to sell.  Also included in this section are some helpful resources for those who have always wanted to LIKE the things they try to draw or paint; but at that early age when they saw that their rendition did not resemble what they saw in real life… and gave up.



At a certain point I asked myself… so you want to be an artist???

As I mentioned previously in my “Artist Biography” I decided to pursue art professionally when I had some success selling  the painted furniture and reproductions of folk art portraits I had been painting using acrylics… however;  I felt that the market I was interested in was oil painting.  It wasn’t until after becoming involved in oil painting classes that I learned that I needed a way not only to have my artwork cataloged as well as put into another medium (i.e. photographed so that I could have a ‘portable’ way of showing it to galleries without lugging the finished canvases and risking damaging them). For more info. on this, refer to the article Building an Artist Portfolio.


I feel very fortunate…

to have been exposed to artists early on,  and I have come to realize that it played a HUGE role in why I became an artist myself.  I recognized from hearing other people I knew who have told me., “I can’t draw…all I can manage is to do a ‘stick-figure!”  that this is often the experience of most people who have not had been fortunate enough to have had the influence of artists in their lives.  I also realized that people who have not had that luxury; that there are books out there that can help them to find ways to discover their hidden potential as an artist or at least someone who is able to render a decent illustration.  In reading a very resourceful book…  “Drawing On The Right Side Of the Brain” written by Betty Edward’s, which artist drawing on the right side of the brain bookaddresses the fact that most people do not get the opportunity to move from the point of drawing stick-figures to the next level, Betty outlines this concept; as well as offers drawing exercises designed to help you get from ‘the stick-figure’… to being able to do a more accurate rendering of the subject that you are attempting to recreate.  She does this in part, by having you look at examples of subjects from different directions, or in other ways for example;  by not having readers look at the subject directly…. and instead drawing WITHOUT looking at the object at all.  This may seem odd and not particularly comfortable to do at 1st, however; following these types of exercises, get you to ‘see’ things in a totally different manner than you are accustomed to… a new way of  ‘seeing’ things.

Deciding to sell your artwork can be a scary thing… putting yourself  & your work out there for others to see is a big step for most artists.  Doing some research before you proceed can lessen the anxiety associated with doing so.  You can also check out art shows, artist exhibitions & even view what’s available online; to see that you are pricing your paintings appropriately for the art market.