Virtual Art Academy
Barry John Raybould and Bato Dugarzhapov

Painting With A Master: Bato Dugarzhapov

Here is a book created by Bato Dugarzhapov that summarizes some of his key thoughts on painting.

Bato Dugarzhapov’s thoughts on painting

Bato Dugarzhapov is one of the master painters of our time. I have been fortunate enough to spend time with him this year painting, and learning about his thoughts on what it takes to produce truly creative and masterful work.

It turns out his thoughts are very much aligned with mine, and in particular on the Visual Music & Poetry™ concept that I came up with when researching information on painting for the Virtual Art Academy online painting classes.

One of the core ideas behind the Visual Music & Poetry idea is that creating a master painting is not at all about making a faithful reproduction of what you see. Rather it is all about creating a beautiful visual experience, that is based on some fundamental truths of nature. It is the latter that makes the painting more powerful, since it relates to us on a human level.

This means that when you paint you have to do two things:

  • #1 Have Fun And Relax
    When you are painting you need to use the scene you are painting as just a starting point. Then play with your colors until you come up with something beautiful on the canvas. Do not think too much. It help to paint quickly. React to things in the scene that interest you and get their essence down quickly. Play with the paint on your canvas until something beautiful happens, even if its not completely true to the actual scene. In fact it won’t be. This is the Visual Music of the painting.
  • #2 Respect The Visual Truths Of Nature
    There are key things you have to know about the visual characteristics you find in nature. Things such as how colors change depending on how far away from you they are. And what are the color variations you see in every sky, no matter where you are in the world. These are the fundamental truths of nature. You have learn these things so that you can apply them while you are playing on the canvas. If you violate these truths, your painting will lose its Visual Poetry

The book includes some of the paintings he created in China with me and one of my students. That’s me on the right in his book. (Bato was painting behind us).

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Barry (right) and his student Meng (left)
Barry and Bato Dugarzhapov painting in China
Barry John Raybould (in back) and Bato Dugarzhapov (front left) painting in China

An artistic legacy

When you are learning how to paint, who you study with is the most important thing to consider. The best knowledge on painting passes down from generation to generation, from one master artist to another. When you study with the Virtual Art Academy, you get the benefit of Barry’s personal apprenticeship over his years of study with many famous painters.

Ultimately an art school depends on the legacy of its teachers. Very other online art school can claim such a pedigree.

Tip: When you sign up for an online art school, find out who taught your teacher (and not just from reading a book!)

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