Virtual Art Academy

Online Art Community News

Well Done Chantel on Completing Workshop H

In “Bouquet” Chantal incorporated the principles of Workshop H for her summary painting: contrast of brushworkcontrast of shaperight anglestie togethercomplementary or balanced color harmony “I cannot...

Daily Tips for Painters

Snow Falls in Pianello

Using Thick Oil Paint to Enhance Light Areas

Cat. No. 1126 Snow Falls in Pianello – 23cm x 30.5cm – Oil on Board When using oils, paint your darks using thin oil paint and your lights using thick oil paint (referred to as “impasto”). This enhances the...

How To Paint Water So It Doesn’t Look Like A Wall

When you are painting a body of water there is one thing that most beginners miss. The end result is a lake or ocean that just doesn’t look right. It looks more like a vertical wall than a flat body of water. The...

Alumni Showcase

Inspirations, by Lorraine

Inspirations, 25x35cms, Watercolor A beautiful art museum scene by Virtual Art Academy alumni student Lorraine. “Trying a different technique with this one by laying complementary colour first and painting final...

Night at Cafe Hapina, by Motti

Another great cafe scene by Virtual Art Academy alumni student Motti Shoval. This painting “Night at Cafe Hapina”, was awarded an Honorable Mention award in the 2019 CMPS National Juried competition. The...

meng qing sheng

Village in China, by Meng

Here are some closeups showing the juicy brushwork in this painting: You can see a video of Meng’s technique in the Apprentice Program lesson on brushwork: N02 Tree Masses See more of Meng’s work from his...

Sue Downie, Hinds

Good Luck Sue

“I submitted paintings to the Society of East Anglian Watercolourists exhibition and heard that these two paintings had got in.”Sue These watercolors have a beautiful texture and an interesting design. Our...

Xinjiang 2019, by Meng

Some recent landscape work by one of our advanced Virtual Art Academy alumni. Meng has a great loose abstract realism/impressionist style. He has been studying with the Virtual Art Academy for four years now. Great work...

Award Winning Painting: Primitive Pots, by Sue

The Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolours Award: Sue from Virtual Art Academy Sue has been studying with the Virtual Art Academy now for five years. This painting recently won the award given by the Royal...

Visual Music & Poetry™ – Understanding Museum and Contemporary Works

Painting Techniques

Cat. No. 1319 Arset el Mellak, Marrakesh detail

The Secret To Painting Luminous Shadows

Table of Contents The problem of dead shadowsHow to create luminous shadows The problem of dead shadows One of the common problems beginners have is to paint shadows so they look ‘dead’. If you look at these...

Straight to Curved Lines

Curved shapes are important in many paintings, not only in paintings with figures in them but also if you are trying to capture the gesture of a particular tree, an archway on a bridge, or a vase. Many drawing books...

colored blocks high saturation primary colors

Block Studies

Learning color is one of the basic skills an artist needs and is often one that is the most neglected. Many beginners use either too much garish color, or go too far the other way and do not use enough color in their...

Focal Points in Rocks at Javea by Joaquin Sorolla

Focal Areas

Focal areas are an important part of a painting. Read all about them here.

contrast of temperature war cool

Contrast of Temperature

There are several ways to emphasize the focal point or focal area in your painting. This key discovery shows you how to use contrast of temperature to focus the eye. In this painting the flower head, which is the focal...

oil painting damage in sun

Does Direct Sunlight Damage Oil Paintings?

Many students ask if they can put their oil paintings out in the sun to make them dry more quickly. Whilst you can do this, there are good reasons not to. Table of Contents Damage to oil paintings from exposure to...

varnish oil paintings

5 Reasons Why You Need to Varnish Your Oil Painting

This article talks about how to varnish an oil painting and why you should do it. Table of Contents Why do you varnish oil paintings?How do you varnish an oil painting? Why do you varnish oil paintings? If you want to...

How to keep your oil paints from drying out

Want some valuable tips on how to save money on paint? and how to cut down on all that weight you have to carry when painting plein air? Then read this article … When I go out plein air painting, I don’t...

creating form with a two-value statement

Two-Value Statement: The Secret To Quick Form

Table of Contents What Is A Two-Value Statement?Tips For How To Make A Two-Value Statement WorkExamples of Two-Value Statements In The Landscape What Is A Two-Value Statement? It is really quite easy to give the...