5 painting rules you should (sometimes) break

Great article from Dan Johnson.

The five rules he discusses:

  • Always paint from dark to light.
  • Never use black paint.
  • Warm light, cool shadows (and vice versa)
  • The rule of thirds
  • Warm colours advance, cool colours recede

4 thoughts on “5 painting rules you should (sometimes) break

    1. Yeah, rules isn’t maybe the best word. But there are obviously time-tested principles, approaches, and knowledge that are helpful to have—especially if you’re painting representationally. For example, you won’t be very effective at painting landscapes if you don’t understand what happens with light temperature, value, contrast, and edges as objects get further away. Or how different colours affect each other when they sit side by side on a canvas. It can be quite frustrating, and limiting creatively, to paint without that knowledge. In that regard, I think it’s best to learn the ‘rules’, and why they exist, before you break them.


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