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     First, and FOREMOST: You MUST use gesso, gesso, and MORE gesso!  By that, I mean you coat your canvas AT LEAST three times with gesso, letting it dry between coats.  This is true even if you have purchased a "precoated" canvas, one that has already been coated with gesso. This is easiest if you use a Hake brush. (usually a 2" flat goat hair brush) I have an older one I use. You can use any brand of gesso for this.*  The triple coating of gesso makes your canvas smoother and allows the paint to sit on top smoothly instead of sinking into the "teeth" of the canvas.  You've seen this and maybe haven't noticed it before, but it looks like the artist skimped on paint, trying to use as little as possible, and the painting suffers as a result.

     Triple coating the canvas with gesso allows the brush strokes to be seen and also allows the colors to shine!  Which means of course that we as the artist will SHINE!!!
   
     I will take a day and coat as many canvases as I have room to lay out so that when I am ready to paint, I always have a properly "prepared" canvas.

     Also, you may use gesso instead of Titanium White for painting.  It MUST,  however, be GRUMBACHER'S brand, which is much thicker than other brands or it won't work.  Of course, that's assuming you are using ACRYLICS. It can be used with oils, but best to do that only if you are a more experienced artist.

*Be sure to remove any lumps or hairs that may get onto your canvas.  Enough of those will get into your art as you paint.  Don't need any extras right?  BTW,  if you do get hair in your work as you paint, remove it if you can do so easily with the brush: if it will mess up your work, let the paint dry, and then "roll" off the hair with your finger by rubbing the canvas.  Don't worry if it won't come off.  Many masterpieces have hair in them!!!

     Tha's all for now, this gives you a good starting point to becoming an artist!  So get busy with the gesso and I'll be back tomorrow (or soon) with more tips for you!  Thanks for visiting!  I will post some of my work for you to see as well.  The painting at the top is the latest of my "SCENES OF ST. AUGUSTINE" to be sold.

   

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IT'S HERE!  THE BIG ART SALE!!

 PLEASE LOOK THROUGH ALL OF THESE AND CHOOSE AS MANY AS YOU LIKE!
Sale prices will be in effect until all these paintings are gone!

        I will accept cash..or a credit card.  If local, pick or or delivery has no shipping charge.  Shipping for 11x14  or smaller should be no more than $8-$15 (USPS priority) depending on where you live. Larger paintings will be more.  I recently shipped an 18 x 24 painting and the shipping (UPS ground) charge was very reasonable ($35) REST ASSURED I WILL SEND THE CHEAPEST ( while still safe) WAY POSSIBLE!

   TO PURCHASE:  TEXT - 904-710-6721 = OR EMAIL : dodsondara@gmail.com


                                   THESE ARE ALL ORIGINAL PAINTINGS!





















DESIGNING A SERIES

     So I wanted to come up with a new series that I thought would be popular.  I decided they needed to be large and showy, but not too complicated.  Since we live in a tropical area, I came up with the idea of "Looking Up", literally!

     I took some pictures of palm trees from below and began painting them in a simplified form on canvas that is 36 x 48 ( huge!)  I love it!  I only have one done so far, but I know that they will be popular judging from comments I have received on social media.  Of course I have photos below of the first ones for you to see.

     I am not the first person to try this, but mine are different from other artists.  Mine are just a little bit more realistic, yet still fantastic and fun.  Larger than life, so to speak in a painting.  I focused in on the area at the top of the trunk where the palm fronds branch out making the structure very strong and making it easy to see …
I have just been given the opportunity to display my paintings in Jacksonville, Fl at the most upscale Antique Mall/Interior Design Center in North Florida.  Needless to say, I am thrilled!  I was given a wall on the main aisle to showcase my art.  They were particularly interested in large pieces of art and I was happy to comply.  It works well for me as my small pieces are in demand here in St. Augustine since tourists prefer something that will fit into their luggage.  But for art shows larger pieces are in order.  So this new venue is a great way for me to show and sell them after the art shows!

     I forgot my camera when the art was hung, so I will have to return to get the display on film for the blog.  Hopefully next week I can show it to you.

     I painted another large painting the other day.  I got the bug to start painting later in the evening and ended up going to bed at 4 am!  You ever do that?  Probably most artists do that from time to time.  I was on a roll, …