10 Tips To Creating Large Canvas Paintings

One of the biggest rewards of blogging is that it has introduced me to many fellow artists from around the world.

I often receive requests for help and advice from talented artists from other countries where it is very challenging, if not impossible, to be an artist. Large canvas painter, Tamara Vogrin is one such example.

Tamara is a self-taught artist and a Bachelor of Textile Engineer from Slovenia, Europe. Like many aspiring artists, Tamara makes her paintings by night and works a ‘real job’ by day in order to support her little son. Her dream is to one day work as a full time artist, and to exhibit her paintings in art galleries in the USA or Europe.

In hopes of helping Tamara gain some exposure, I asked her to share her large canvas portrait paintings with the following guest post…

10 Tips To Creating Large Canvas Paintings

10 Tips To Creating Large Canvas Paintings

When I first started to make large portrait paintings on canvas years ago, I never thought that in the future I would create so many of them.  I also never thought that I would put them on exhibit as many times as I have, and in so many different places.

I first began painting wall murals all over my country, and then decided to focus on large canvases in acrylic. Since then, these canvases have become larger and larger in size. I think I am little bit obsessed with them. 

It does not matter if the painting is large or small, it is all about what you like, what you want to create, and how much you want to do it.

I fell in love with painting on a large canvas years ago, and personally think, as it has been said, “my life is like a big blank canvas and I want to throw a lot of paint on it”. If you decide to create a large canvas painting, here are some tips that might be useful for you.

From zero experience to first experience:

TIP 1

At first, you may be scared of the large canvas you bought because you do not have any experience. You must start somewhere to get this experience!

TIP 2

For a large canvas portrait you will need a model.  You will need a person or photo, a sketch pencil, big and small brushes, paints, kitchen towels, and a lot of patience!

TIP 3

If you don’t have enough time to paint a portrait with a model sitting in front of you in your studio (or this person is a superstar and of course does not have the time for you), you will need to find a photo of the person you would like to paint. If you decided to make a portrait from the photo you like and do not want to copy the photo on the canvas, you can do it on your own. 

10 Tips To Creating Large Canvas Paintings

TIP 4

Sketch the portrait on a piece of paper at first, decide which colors you want to use, and then start to sketch the portrait on a large color toned grounded canvas with a sketch pencil. If you do not know how and where to begin, drawing a grid may help you to put everything in the right place. With more and more experience, will you no longer need a grid.

TIP 5

Start by painting with the darkest colors first and then make the shadows next.

TIP 6

Step back from the painting every few minutes and compare the painting and the photo.  If you have a real model, compare the portrait with the model’s face.

You will need a lot of space in your room or studio to create a large painting.  You will not see any mistakes if you only observe the painting up close, so you need to step a few feet back to see anything that needs to be touched up.

TIP 7

If you see any differences, you can always improve your painting. You just need a lot of patience, and it can sometimes take several weeks or months to make a good large portrait.

10 Tips To Creating Large Canvas Paintings

TIP 8

When you think you are finished, listen to the critics. If you can turn negative critiques like “this is not even close to Clint Eastwood” into positive energy and continue working on the large painting for a few more weeks, then you are a winner.

TIP 9

Be yourself. Do your own thing. Stop comparing yourself with other artists. Somehow we all need to find our own style. Try to bring a part of your soul into every painting you do.

TIP 10

Work hard, stay positive and you will be happy!

*****

Thank you for visiting FineArtTips.com. You can see my art on my website,  LoriMcNee.com, and let’s meet on Facebook  Fine Art Tips Facebook Fan Page, on Twitter, Google Plus and on PinterestBe sure and check out and my fine art prints and notecards on Fine Art America.! ~Lori

2014-10-11T21:02:45+00:00 November 10th, 2013|Fine Art Tips, General, Guest Articles, How To Paint, Draw & More|9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Marie Pinschmidt November 10, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    Excellent post, Lori.
    It was nice to see your smiling face in The Artist magazine. I’ll have to give Cobra a try!
    Happy painting.
    Marie

  2. Lucy Chen November 10, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    Tamara, I admire your perseverance. Thank you for sharing your tips.

    • Lori McNee November 13, 2013 at 10:52 pm

      Hello Lucy, thanks again for your support of your fellow artist. ~Lori 🙂

  3. Tamara Vogrin Tara November 11, 2013 at 9:44 am

    Thank you Lori, I am very honoured!! And thank you Marie & Lucy 🙂 Greetings from Gornja Radgona, Slovenia

    • Lori McNee November 13, 2013 at 10:52 pm

      Thank YOU Tamara, it is a wonderful to lend a helping hand to a hardworking artist from the other side of the pond! Thanks for sharing your story. ~Lori

  4. Jan Clifton Watford January 16, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    Your portraits are interesting and your process. As a former art teacher in public school, I am sure your posts are helpful to other aspiring artists.

    • Lori McNee January 19, 2014 at 11:29 pm

      Hello Jan, I am glad you enjoyed this post and the paintings. I appreciate your feedback.

  5. interior design February 8, 2014 at 11:57 am

    Thank you for sharing your info. I really appreciate your efforts and I am waiting for your further post thank you once again.

    • Lori McNee February 21, 2014 at 11:39 pm

      You are very welcome!

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