Helpful how to tips on painting, drawing and creating!

New DVD “Luminous Landscape Painting in Water Mixable Oils” with Lori McNee

You asked for it, and now you've got it! My long-awaited DVD or downloadable video, "Luminous Landscape Painting in Water Mixable Oils with Lori McNee" is now available! Discover how to create luminous, glowing landscapes using water mixable or traditional oil in my 4 hour, comprehensive videos and Go Solvent-Free with Lori McNee!  Watch me demonstrate both a summer and a winter scene, step-by-step,  from start to finish.   Here’s a preview of the tips and techniques [...]

Traveling and Painting with Opaque Gouache and Watercolor for the Busy Artist

Each year, my busy art career takes me to near and far away places. Ironically, I oftentimes find myself with little or no time to plein air paint. Eric Rhoads and Lori McNee at  Eric's Plein Air Convention in Santa Fe, 2018 Lori on stage demoing painting with water-mixable oils. That is why I am really excited about traveling with opaque gouache and watercolor paints, and a watercolor sketchbook! Let me explain. I [...]

Pro Tips for Painting with Water-Mixable Oils

For nearly 20 years, I have been painting with water-mixable oils. Before that, I primarily painted with acrylics as a wildlife artist. Although I loved acrylic paint, I was ready to loosen up oil paint, but I didn't want to use solvents. Once I discovered water-mixable oils, and I have never looked back... @2018 Lori McNee “Evergreen Mist” 24x48, Oil on canvas Since then, I have tried almost every brand of water-mixable oils (WMO) on [...]

Helpful Negative Drawing Tips Revealed by Pencil Artist

A pencil artist reveals helpful negative drawing tips to produce vibrant highlights, textures, grasses, hair, feathers, fur and more! Negative drawing is a drawing technique in which the artist uses the white of the drawing paper (negative space) and surrounds it with positive marks (positive space) to build up the darkest values with layers of graphite. While browsing Instagram one day, I was immediately captivated by the beautiful animal drawings of pencil artist, Kathryn Hansen. It's wonderful [...]

2018-03-05T17:29:34+00:00 March 5th, 2018|Fine Art Tips, General, Guest Articles, How To Paint, Draw & More, Lori's Featured Articles|Comments Off on Helpful Negative Drawing Tips Revealed by Pencil Artist

Two Easy Ways to Develop the Focal Point of Your Painting

There are a number of different ways to develop the focal point of your painting. In this post, I am sharing two easy techniques for developing a focal point, plus a helpful list of other ideas. A focal point is a specific place of visual emphasis in your painting. It creates the center of attention. The focal point is the area that draws the eye of the viewer to the most important part of the painting.  Generally [...]

2018-02-19T16:13:02+00:00 February 12th, 2018|General, How To Paint, Draw & More, Lori's Featured Articles|Comments Off on Two Easy Ways to Develop the Focal Point of Your Painting

An Easy Art Studio Lighting System for Better Paintings

Proper art studio lighting is one of the most important factors to a successful painting. Over the years, I have used many types of art studio lighting from North Light (great, but NL is limited to working during daytime hours) to artificial lighting.  I have tried many alternatives that have been both expensive and disappointing. Lori replaced one track light on her studio ceiling with the ML-Direct lighting system. A while ago, I installed an overhead [...]

2017-10-01T23:25:00+00:00 October 1st, 2017|Fine Art Tips, General, How To Paint, Draw & More, Lori's Featured Articles|Comments Off on An Easy Art Studio Lighting System for Better Paintings

Using Japanese Notan Design Principles For Plein Air Painting

Recently, I've been reviewing the Japanese design term known as Notan. This ancient Japanese word literally means “light-dark balance.” The Notan is an ideal type of study for finding the shapes and patterns that serve as the foundation of every composition. In one of my favorite art books, Composition by Arthur Wesley Dow, Notan is covered in depth. In plein air, landscape painting, Notan is more than merely depicting light and shadow. Instead, the artist uses every line, light [...]

2017-05-04T21:11:52+00:00 May 2nd, 2017|Fine Art Tips, General, How To Paint, Draw & More, Lori's Featured Articles, Plein Air|Comments Off on Using Japanese Notan Design Principles For Plein Air Painting

Discover How To Turn Imagination into Art

We all have an imagination. But, it takes a special skill to hold an image in thought and turn that imagination into art. ©2016 Lori McNee, Summertime, 20x20, encaustic on cradled birch panel Art-making can be a natural gift, a learned skill, or a combination of both. Making art is difficult and it takes perseverance, imagination, and a lot of hard work. Throughout the ages, even the most talented artists have had to work for [...]

Ways to Protect Your Health in the Art Studio

After nearly 30 years of being a professional artist, I've discovered it is important to enjoy your creative side while taking steps to protect your health in the art studio. In an effort to be eco-friendly and to keep the air quality in my home-studio healthy, I have always painted with solvent-free, water-mixable oil paints (by Cobra) to create the majority of my artwork. I've also educated myself on the health standards of my art materials. Nevertheless over recent years, I [...]

2017-01-22T00:15:53+00:00 November 3rd, 2016|Fine Art Tips, General, How To Paint, Draw & More, Lori's Featured Articles|Comments Off on Ways to Protect Your Health in the Art Studio

Charcoal Drawing Using The Grid Method

Young artists always inspire me! I discovered wildlife artist, Taylor Nichezynski, on Facebook. I was impressed with her drawing skills and asked if she would share her helpful Grid Method tips to help my readers. Before we get started, here is a bit about The Grid Method: Since ancient Egyptian times, artists have been using The Grid Method as a drawing tool to improve accuracy. The Egyptians used this method by ‘snapping’ a string soaked in red dye against [...]

2016-04-13T12:25:47+00:00 April 13th, 2016|Fine Art Tips, General, Guest Articles, How To Paint, Draw & More, Lori's Featured Articles|Comments Off on Charcoal Drawing Using The Grid Method