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How To Make An Abstract Painting With A Palette Knife

Have your ever dreamed of making a cool abstract paining for your room or home or office using a palette knife and acrylic paint? By following a few simple steps, you can make an awesome looking abstract painting. The thing that makes it easy is that using a palette knife does not require a great deal of drawing skill, like you would need if you were using a paint brush. Give it a try; you will probably be amazed at what you can do. Your friends and family will be shocked when you show them your abstract painting masterpiece.

Equipment:

Palette knife (or 2)

Acrylic paints

Canvas, board or paper

STEP 1

Begin with the background of the painting. You want the colors in the background to be neutral and not as bright as the foreground, maybe use browns or mix some white or gray in with whatever colors you choose for the background. Try mixing the colors right on the canvas as you are painting the background. That way the colors will have a variety of tones as opposed to just being a flat area of color. Take some paint, squeeze it one your palette and squeeze some white or gray on your palette. Put some of one color on the palette knife and apply the color in horizontal and vertical stokes on the canvas, and while that color is still wet, get some of the other color on your knife and mix it in with the previous color using the same horizontal and vertical strokes. Don’t mix them together too much; leave it with streaks of each color, slightly blended together. Keep the contrast low to medium and keep the background simple and don’t use too many colors.

STEP 2

When painting the foreground, choose colors that are complimentary to your background colors. For example, if your background colors are cool (purples, greens or blues) use warm colors in the foreground (reds, yellows, and or oranges). This would be a complimentary color scheme. Squeeze the foreground color or colors onto your palette, put one of the colors on your knife and make a long horizontal rectangular shape near the top or bottom of the canvas. Make another similar shape near the middle but, on this shape, mix two colors together. The edges don’t have to be regular or straight; they can be irregular and organic. Make another type of shape with a different color, maybe a circle or two, maybe an oval shape, maybe a square, maybe an irregular organic shape. As you can see, the possibilities are endless. The point is to choose a couple of different type shapes for the foreground. Make sure you have a variety of different size shapes. Once you have your foreground shapes composed on the canvas, adjust the colors until they feel right. Try using an “accent” color; choose a couple of small foreground shapes and give them a really bright contrasting color or a contrast in light and darkness. This will give your painting a real dramatic quality.

There you have it – your new abstract painting masterpiece.

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