Artist Tries Abstract Art – TOTALLY WACK OR WONDERFULLY ABSTRACT?
You either love it or you hate it. Personally, I have never really been into abstract art until I tried it recently and now I have been obsessed with it. So, join me today.
We’re going to get experimental. We’re going to get weird. And overall, we’re just going to turn our brains off and have fun with art. I’ll be trying a few different abstract techniques including acrylic pouring. Remember that fad? I’m only like a year late. And thanks to the sponsor of this video Skill Share, I was able to learn how to use my tools a little better to use those techniques. Skillshare is an online learning community with thousands of classes covering any creative skill you can think of. Including painting, crafting, baking, you name it, they have it all. Thanks to Skill Share I’ve learned so many new ways to get creative. It’s an incredibly affordable tool at only $10 a month and thanks to their sponsorship you can follow the link in the description to get a two month free trial! And to get warmed up, I’m going to follow this acrylic pouring class taught by Kaitlin Goodey. She has everything I needed to know from supplies, techniques, demos, troubleshooting, she covers everything. Which would have been super useful had I followed what she actually taught me, but Mwuahahaha. I’m a rebel and you can’t tell me what to do.
Art has no rules. Only very helpful tips that for some reason I refuse to follow. That just means I’ll be giving her troubleshooting a lesson a lot more attention than her other ones. Okay. enough about Skill Share, I’m very excited to get started because I’ve just been super into abstract painting and I’m really anxious to try acrylic pouring, So… let’s get into it. So as you can see I have two canvas here I’m going to do acrylic pouring on just to have two options. They are elevated a little bit by some wood pieces just to make sure that they don’t dry onto the paper we have on the table. I’ve got some cups here I’m going to put my paint into. And I actually went to the dollar store to get acrylic paints because I didn’t want to use my good quality paints to do acrylic pouring with…? I just- I don’t know. I didn’t want to. Of course I had to get Dookie Green. That’s right. So in the class for acrylic pouring it says to mix in a pouring agent or something to thin your paints, but to be honest these dollar-store quality paints that seem to be very thin already. So… like I said, you can’t tell me what to do with art. I’m going to make mistakes. And now I am just going to add a droppers worth of water to each cup. Again, I don’t want to add a lot of water to it. You’re not really supposed to ask that much water to acrylic, but just to help thin it out because I’m not using an agent. Okay. So now I have our little water mixtures, I’m just going to start pouring them on in little dots and then move the canvas around for this one, and for this one I’m going to do what I think is called a “dirty pour”, where you actually put all of your paint in one cup and then pour it over your canvas in one go. I think I can tell my paint is not thin enough, but hey, that’s cool. So now I’m going to pick up the canvas, and I guess I’ll get this one out of the way, and I’m just going to… So I am just going to pick up the canvas and start, oh my gosh, moving it around. This is probably gonna be super messy, but this is that what art’s about?
Getting messy and having fun? So I can definitely tell that my paint is super thick. Way thicker than it probably should be. I probably should have added more water, but… Hey, whatever. This is what happens when you don’t follow the rules. So obviously my number one mistake was making the paint way too thick. So this is going to take a hot minute. But I think I’m actually just gonna go ahead and add some additional pink. Look. This is all that we have left to cover. I’m shaking. I’m trying to get it down there. Hahaha. He’s like “Nah, I’m good.” So here we are. This is our very minimalistic… acrylic poor situation. There are some nice cool textures in there between the red and green. And I like a little speckles. I don’t know if that’s because I was hitting it to try to get it to pour better, but there we go. This is our first… acrylic pour. There’s a lot of big chunks. I think I would have liked there to be a lot more texture in here, but you know what? This is what happens when you break the rules. So… there’s our first one. Alright. And I’m going to start adding all of our colors together into one cup and do dirty pour. So… Wish me luck. All right, we’ve got our… mix. I’m scared, but here we go. [♫] It looks like going around in a circle created… quite an interesting little layer where there was more red on top. Where’d all the pink go?!
All the pink disappeared! That’s so sad. Let’s get rid of that red. It’s too much red. Oh my gosh. All the red just disappeared. That’s fine. I love green… way more. Alright, let’s bring it on down. I’m about to get really messy. Here we go. The green just kind of took over huh? Oh my goodness. It’s just like a green big blob, huh? Wow! The drips on the paper look way cooler! I should have had a canvas on the paper.
Look how cool that looks! All right, uhm. This is a messy disaster. My fingers look like I just put my hands in someone’s nose and it’s all boogers. I feel like my hands are more intresting of a pattern than my- my canvas.
Look at my hand. Now that’s- That’s art. Also, I just love all of this. This is way more interesting. Now, how am I going to open the door to my room to wash my hands? Whoops. So after my paintings finally dried after a day. Which by the way one of them ended up cracking. And just like I predicted I ended up on Kaitlin’s Skillshare class on troubleshooting that you were acrylic pouring and, yep. She said that your paint would crack if it was too thick but we already knew that didn’t we? Okay fine. I won’t break their rules any more. Goofs aside I decided to give these paintings a little bit of a Kasey Golden touch and added some goofy faces to the bigger blocks of paint just to liven up these pieces just a little bit. I still don’t like them. I am trying to loosen up with my abstract painting, but I still think I’ve got some controlling tendencies… and acrylic pouring that just throws every control out the window. So I think I’m just going to focus on acrylic abstract painting for now. So, let’s get into painting! [♫] So, do you remember this oil painting I did from a mystery unboxing video? This thing is still- It’s mostly dry, but in these thicker areas, it’s still… It’s still tacky.
And by tacky, I mean wet. So not only is that a little unfortunate because it’s been over a month since I made that piece, but I really enjoyed the process of that abstract painting and I want to do something like that with acrylic. Also, it was purple and I really don’t like purple. So I’d like to do… one with maybe yellow and green? Maybe one with shades of blue? We’ll see. I’m just gonna play around with it and see what happens. I also think it’d be really fun to work in a larger… piece. Look how big this is. I think this is- What was it? This is a 14 by 18 piece and the purple piece was an 8 by 10. So it’s quite a bit bigger. So I’m just going to kind of put paint down and see what happens. I’m really not picky about this. This is a… A free process. We’re just gonna have fun and play around with it. See what happens. Why the heck not? I kind of want to start off with white. I think adding white does add an interesting- Even though white is the color of the canvas, I think just having dots here and there… just add something a little… It adds something. I don’t know what I’m saying. This is abstract art. Don’t think-
Don’t think too hard. You really don’t need as much as you might think you need, but I do really like having texture of the paint. So I want to make sure that we do have plenty of paint. I just don’t want to do so much that I end up wasting it is all. And then we’re already getting messy. I’ve got mustard on my hands. I’m just gonna throw paint down see what happens. I do want this to be mostly green so I should probably chill out with the yellow colors. AH! Oh boy. I just got paint all over my floor. Okay, this is more of my jam. Like a dookie… brown-yellow. That’s what I’m talking about. Let’s get some down here. Okay, finally, let’s get some of these beautiful dookie green colors in here. That’s what we’re all here for, right? And I guess we can do a little bit of bright green.
It is pretty nice. We’ll put some in here. Okay. So the technique that I’ve learned is best is that you kind of want to… spread the colors before you go in with a brush otherwise you’re going to end up with a lot of… stuff that you don’t want. Basically. So help kind of mix it, but don’t mix it too much. Yessss. I like that Dookie Brown. That’s my jam. Oohh. I’m really liking this already. Oh my gosh. Okay. So. I’m loving it already. Just gonna scrape off this extra paint. So next what I like to do is I like to get a flat brush and I’m just gonna go through and… do little swirls but first I do like to paint the side because I get really weirdly anal about the sides also being painted. I don’t like the edges of a canvas to be white. It just kind of… doesn’t look great to me. I like to get texture but not too much texture which is why I try to… kind of mix the thicker paints in with the thinner paints to get a nice lovely not too thick not too thin paint. I just really like to see the paint and the strokes and the rough mix. I don’t want it to be a smooth gradient. I want it to be rather rough. We’ve got Dookie brown and green coming in. I love it. I like my Dookie colors. Oh, this would be a lovely piece to go in my bathroom. We’ve got pee. We’ve got poop-green, poop-brown… What else do you need in a bathroom art piece, right? Oh I love green! I just love how crappy it is. Pun… intended. Though something I’ve learned with these particular swirly abstract pieces is that… you don’t want to go too dark because then you start to lose the texture of the swirls. I’ve done a couple of pieces on my own where they’re just so dark that it just looks like a dark blob. And you don’t really get the texture and that’s like half of the painting is seeing all the swirls. I think this particular piece is a little yellow heavy for me, but… I still really like it. I do like yellow and… I- I like this piece so far. I’m enjoying this. Alright. We’re getting into a different green here. It’s creating such a wall. I do like not having a smooth gradient between each one, but whoa, that’s just like suddenly a dark green. That’s really interesting. I really like this area. There’s a suddenly this really nice blue-green dark patch just out of nowhere. Alright. Oh my gosh, I really like this one! I- Like I said, I do think it’s a little yellow heavy for my taste, but the greens start really early and I really like it. There’s just like a sudden… orange dark right there. I love this sudden dark green up here. The white mixed in with the yellow is really nice. This the random a green stripe and it goes back to yellow and then that that pale green I really like too. I’m really happy with this piece. This ones are really fun. And I love green. I love yellow. I think this one’s a super success. I’m going to go ahead and clean up our brush and kind of clean up a little bit around here and get our blues ready. [♫] And because this is basically the same thing, I’m going to go ahead and put headphones in and just get into working and You guys can just watch the really cool sped up process. I think I’m actually to do a different texture though.
Instead of the swirly circles, I’m going to try to do… a little brush- brush marks and make it look scaly. And just play around a texture and see what that does. All right. I’ll see you soon! So like I mentioned I am obsessed with the little swirly gradient colors, but I really need to branch out and do other things. I mean, honestly, how many canvases of swirly gradient color can I really have in my apartment? I already have a few. I don’t- I don’t need 20. So going into this I knew I was going to struggle with the light blue color.
And my gosh did I not struggle with the light blue color. I’ve mentioned this in a previous video before, but I’m just so used to watercolor and the fact that white is your base color and that you have to add a lot of color to water to make it color. But when it comes to less transparent mediums you really have to add a small amount of color to white or you end up with a very dark color. And that’s something that I continue to struggle with throughout every single acrylic painting until I get a nice grasp on that white situation. So this abstract painting is very medium to heavy- Medium to heavy? Dark blue colors. I kept adding white and because I already had so much color on the canvas the white was just like
“Bye! See you later! I’m going to go… away…” One day I will get it, but that day is not now. Something else I struggled with this piece was that the paint dried a lot faster than I anticipated and it took a lot longer to add the scales than it did to do the swirls. So the paint was drying and by the time I was midway through I couldn’t mix the color and whatever color was on top was the color I got so… because I started off putting white on the canvas and then putting the darker colors, that ended up making it the majority of this painting a darker to mid tone. So after I had added all the texture I also decided that it was kind of boring. I think it was mainly because the shade was just so dark and there wasn’t a whole lot of change happening. And that’s when I decided that this kind of looked like a night sky and it would be really interesting to add some white and put some texturized abstract clouds in there. So I did. Again, the white was just being absorbed into the darker blue color. I probably should have added the clouds after the base color had dried… but I was just anxious to get in there, so regretfully a lot of white paint was wasted in making those clouds, but we do have some really nice gradients. So… I don’t know. No regrets. And I also wanted to add some birds.
Because we had all this very plain texture, I thought it would be really funny to add my signature “Five-year-old birds.” And I quite like it.
The birds also just kind of help let you know that this is a sky. I know it’s abstract and you don’t need to be told that, but they’re silly and I like them. So as you can see I decided that I wasn’t super into just the lines. It was kind of boring and the lighter colors didn’t really shine through as much as I was hoping they would. So I decided to… turn it into a cloud scene. If you turn your head- I’m afraid to touch it because it’s too wet, but if you turn your head… you can see the clouds and I put some birds in there and I do think it’s a lot more interesting when I did put the second swirly textures in there. So, that was really fun! The birds didn’t turn out quite how I wanted them to but I do think they turned out… okay. It was still a lot of fun to make this piece. [♫] So for our next and final piece I wanted to go a little bit more subjective abstract. Our subject for this piece is going to be a cactus. I thought it would be really fun to take a subject that I’m used to drawing in a cute illustrative way and really just make it abstract. Obviously. But I was really starting to struggle with it and I think at this point I was starting to think too hard with my abstract art. I think once I take a subject and try to make it abstract, I start to focus on making something I want to make and I want to make it look good instead of just focusing on having fun with art. So, it was at this point that I realized that I have left my abstract comfort zone and I’m probably not quite ready to turn things abstract quite yet. I’m really enjoying playing with color and texture. I’m obsessed with paint texture and the two attempts with this cactus I really hated. They were either too simple or they played with flat texture more than I would have liked. Originally I was thinking about going to this cactus with very simple shapes like circles and squares and ovals and turning that into a cactus, but I kept thinking that was something I could probably do with construction paper, felt or even digitally. I really like the texture you can get with acrylic paint. I love how 3d it is. I love how unpredictable the colors can be if you don’t quite mix them right. So, I completely scrapped the first two attempts at this cactus and I painted over one of them and I will definitely be painting over the other. I decided for starts the background texture was the same as an acrylic painting I had done when I wasn’t working abstract. It was too simple. I wanted texture. And I especially wanted to play around with painting with my palette knife. So obviously going back to Skillshare I went to Suzanne Kurilla, who painted with her palette knife and I love the texture she got from it. And even though I wasn’t quite as adventurous as I would have liked to be, again, the whole controlling thing is still there. I’m trying to let loose. I did get some very interesting texture. And, like I said, I do like the result. I just need to learn to let loose and not be so scared in the future. It’s almost like an abstract pixel art of a cactus and I really like it! I love it! It’s a lot darker and more earthy than my other abstract pieces but, you know me, I like my dookie green. Then I started to think about cactus in my own personal style, which honestly, you could probably describe my illustrative style as somewhat abstract. I mean listen to this. This is the definition for abstract art
“Art that does not attempt to represent external reality but seeks to achieve its effect using shapes, forms, colors, and texture.” And if my illustrative style isn’t based on shapes, I don’t know what it is then. Clearly it’s not attempting to represent reality. That’s for dang sure. Ants with four legs? Unheard of. Anyways I will definitely be using abstract art as a form of relaxation and just having fun with art because I feel like I’ve been losing that with my illustrative style. I mean, did you see me dancing while I was painting on that canvas? I don’t dance while I illustrate. I was having fun! [♫] And there we go.
There is our abstract art that we created. Do you feel any differently about abstract art now? I had a lot of fun with these even though near the end I started to think a little too hard. It was a lot of fun to just let loose and create some really interesting visually and colorful pieces and not think too hard about the subject matter. I know you’re so inspired, but before you go and make your own abstract art, make sure you click the link in the description and get your 2 month free trial of skill share.
Thank you so much for sponsoring this video. And with that thank you guys so much for watching this video. I hope you enjoyed it, and I’ll see you guys in the next one. Bye! [♫]