I am a Realist Painter

This is something I’ve been trying to avoid but it is clear as I continue painting that my style is Realism. I want people to imagine that they are looking at reality when they view my paintings; I call this the Reality Illusion. I’m looking at the paintings of Peder Mørk Mønsted and his work is similar to the way I paint, although he was definitely the better artist. Initially I wanted to paint in more of an impressionist style and tried to, but I always revert to a more realistic style although I’m still trying to make my style more impressionistic. I’m presently working on the brick wall of a building and I have to stop myself from adding in ridiculous amounts of detail. I try to make the painting appear real hence the reality illusion but I would also like the painting to have a more impressionistic appearance. I greatly admire artists who paint with an impressionistic style yet still impart an illusion of reality to the scene.


I was reading a Blog about brushes a few days ago and one of the headlines was ‘Don’t stop at one’. I laughed a little and looked over at my collection. The photo in the article that I was reading showed a collection of very used almost decrepit brushes; looking at my collection I realised that most of them are in better shape. At first, I was a little proud of this but after some thought I realised that some of my brushes are 40 years old and maybe more. So perhaps I’m just not using them as much as I should, but it doesn’t seem to stop me from buying more.

I’ve talked about my brushes before. I doubt that I have as many as some artists. In my own defense I learned to paint when I was young and became a graphic artist when I was older and had children. So, I have brushes from when I was young and I’ve been collecting them slowly ever since. I have to agree with the advice of not stopping at one. Sometimes I will search through my whole collection searching for the one perfect brush. I consider this a good reason to head to the store to find another of those ‘perfect’ brushes.

Just Enough Detail

I’m painting a brick wall; the back wall of an old building in New York, and I want to know just how much detail to show. I know how a brick wall is built and I know why it’s built in the way that it is. I don’t think I have to show extensive detail about the way it’s built but I need to show the detail that some people expect. I’d like it to be detailed enough that a bricklayer will accept the imperfections that I know must be there, so It needs to be representational, not photographic.


This is the only YouTube video I could find that shows why some of the bricks appear smaller than others, it’s stronger to lay some of the bricks at 90° to the others thus keeping sections together. This is an old video from the 40s or 50s, I suspect that this method is no longer used much and now metal banding is used. The building, or rather the rear wall, is an old building in New York so the techniques are relevant.

OK so a bricklayer looked at it and her only comment was “messy job”. She was talking about the brick laying job not the painting. At least that is my story.

So, the bricks aren’t perfect but they look a little like bricks and should enhance the reality illusion.

A Little Rant

The new Website is up and running although there will be small changes I’m sure. I was Using Adobe Muse and I liked the application, unfortunately, Adobe Decided that the application did not have a future and stopped supporting it. I have gone back to my old standby Dreamweaver but it has taken me a few weeks to relearn it. I’m really annoyed with Adobe because I started using Muse and liked it. Now I’m back to Dreamweaver. I like Dreamweaver and Adobe has improved it immensely and it is the better, more powerful application. I’m just annoyed that I spent time learning a new application and liked it.

Nature Is A Little Grey

I like bright colours but I notice when I’m looking at a landscape that the colours are a little on the grey side. When I was working as a wedding photographer I noticed that I always turned up the colour saturation when I was adjusting the pictures; actually, I had to be careful about that because there is a fine line between a great photo and an oversaturated one. It’s not quit so important with painting but I still like bright colours and the grey tone I perceive in nature is important for the reality illusion. For a painting to elicit the Reality Illusion the colours and shades need to be a little on the grey side to match a colour as seen in nature. This may just be my perception of an image but it does make sense because it’s unlikely that a natural colour would be what we think of as a pure saturated colour. They do exist in nature, a butterfly’s wings for example, but that has more to do with how the colours are produced.