Brushwork 4: Descriptive Brushwork and Focal Areas

Unlock the secrets of describing form, movement and mood through your brushwork. Make your own painting using descriptive brushwork techniques to enhance your subject and create a clear focus to the image


With reference to stunning examples, find out about 4 useful types of edges to employ in your paintings to create space, depth and focus. Practise using these edges in a simple exercise to help you build skill and explore how your different brushes can help you to create varied and beautiful finishes.

Contents: Slide talk, practical demonstration and skill building exercise.
Running time: 1hr 40mins
Time required for exercise: 30mins

Materials List

Materials and equipment required:

At least one canvas, paper or board of A4 (9×12”) size.
A medium to large sized, long handled stiff paint brush, and a smaller one for details I use a size 10 flat and a size 2 filbert hog bristle brush , also a medium sized brush in hog or synthetic bristle is good for the ‘firm’ strokes and a big soft brush helps to blend out lines to achieve soft edges, either a soft natural hair such as sable or squirrel or a soft synthetic bristle is good for blending.
Any colours in a variety of light and dark shades will be fine.
Do not use medium for this exercise
A stay-wet pallete for acrylics or a wipe clean one for oils

An easel or table easel to allow you to paint onto a vertical surface is important for these exercises.

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