Acrylic painting techniques and tutorial with Tracey Creighton I Colour In Your Life

Acrylic painting techniques and tutorial with Tracey Creighton I Colour In Your Life


G’Day Viewers, My Name is Graeme Stevenson and I ‘d like to invite you to come on a journey of creativity and learning and adventure through the series Colour In Your Life, There’s an artist in every family, throughout the world and lots of times there’s an artist deep down inside all of us as well, so grab your Kids, your Brothers, your Sisters, your Auntie’s, Uncles’ and Mum’s and Dad’s and come and see how some the best artist in Australia do what they do. (Music Plays) (Music Plays) Well hi folks and welcome back to Colour In Your Life.
We’re down at Merimbula today with a wonderful lady, Tracey Creighton. Welcome to the show Tracey. Oh thankyou Graeme, lovely
to have you here in Merimbula. It’s great, a really beautiful area. The weather
is just fantastic at the moment and we’ve actually come down to south east New South Wales to
actually film a couple of Artists as we go up the coast, but Tracey without a doubt, and meeting this lady and looking
at her background, she’s probably the most organized Artist I have ever met in my life. It’s just extraordinary. She has
a fabulous gallery in her home down here in Merimbula, which is right on the water’s edge and you obviously saw as
we were out the front we walked through the garden, it’s just magnificent area. But going back, I mean I think
this really all came about when you were a young woman, age of twenty-one I think, twenty-one or twenty-two, and
you started an art institution a graphic Arts Technical college. Yes, a training college. A training college in Brisbane in 1982 and just had a booming
success with that. So tell me a little more about the college. Well I started it in 1982 to train people for
careers in the graphic arts and advertising industry, so I had part time and full time students, and I owned
the college up until 1995 and sold it in order to go overseas, but the college is still running now,
thirty-one years later, so that’s terrific. And you’ve really gone from there, which is
just sensational, she’s a magnificent teacher as well, obviously has a lot of students come into the area and
I think that the rest of Australia should know about that. Amazingly talented lady and as I said, if you want to know
about the business of art I think that Tracey is definitely a person to talk to as well. And Tracey is such a diverse Artist as well;
if you look at her work she does a number of different types of styles, which I think are just really wonderful as well. We’re going to be working on a painting today, nice big size too,
I like that, and we’re going to go through the process of how you put one of your pieces together. Really interesting
stuff too; you’re going to see some really good techniques that I haven’t really seen before myself.
Once again that’s the reason we do what we do, is to come to these great artists to see how they present
their work. So lets see what we can do with this artwork. Excellent. Let’s do it. So what do we do now? Ok, spray bottle, we’re going to wet the canvas first. Okay. So, I mean how much water
would you normally put into this? Look you could paint it on with a big wide brush
if you wanted to. It’s just as easy to spray the canvas down. You sort of want it wet right out to the edges and enough water
so that the ink is going to flow nice and easily, so that’s about it. And that’s what we’re using first off,
you just said ink. Yes we’re using Art Spectrum pigmented inks.
Its highly concentrated colour. Beautiful and bright, so we want this canvas as translucent and as bright as possible
to start with, so I choose ink rather than paint to do that. Alright I might just sit down here and watch what you do You sure? You can help You want me to pour some stuff on do you? Well you can. Would you like to that? Here you go,
have some orange, off you go. [Laughs] So how much am I supposed to put? Knock yourself out. This is a little similar to what I do occasionally as well. Yep. So you just want a bit dropped, scattered. It doesn’t matter if they splatter like that? No that’s fine. And it’s just all over? Yep. Now I know on this canvas I’m going
to be painting a lotus flower. Okay. And because it’s sitting around lily pads and it’s on water,
I’m going to put blues and turquoise into the background. And these are techniques that you teach in your schools? Yeah I do, kids love this and in fact you get such a
fabulous response from them and adults as well I might add. Because they’re just amazed by the result
that they get just from splashing ink about. Its fabulous. Alright, what’s next after we do that? Okay, so we’re going to use
some cling wrap to put over this now. Often when you buy a stretched canvas they
come with plastic, they come in a plastic wrap. Sure. So when you’re using a big canvas
like this keep the plastic wrap because you don’t have to use cling wrap you can just
use the plastic that’s come off the canvas. Oh okay. That’s great. So I’m going to get your help for this. Now if I get you
to take that end and just lay that sort of loosely. Just lay it loosely so it just sort of falls? Yep. Just let it fall over the top. That’s it, and we’re
going to pull it so that it covers the edges as well, cause this colour will bleed where ever the ink and the water has gone.
It will just bleed out. So we can pull that colour like this, right out to the edge of the canvas and
then it will eventually just bleed around the sides. Oh it will just go over the edge? Yeah. And we will just lie that so
that there’s a little overlap there as well. There you go. Is that right? Yep. Ok and then over the last area. Okay. Now, just push the colour right out to the edge. Oh so you just use your… Yeah and you can scrunch it. Oh wow. Push the glad wrap around. Yeah? The more that you move the glad wrap, the more
the colour intermingles and the colour will eventually, you know, all these beautiful bright colours will start going muddy.
So we want to get it before it goes too muddy, so we push it around enough so we’ve
still got some lovely colour happening. So this is fun, this is fun. This is what art’s
all about. It’s just wonderful. Look at the gorgeous patterning. I know, look at that! Look at that, look at that! Okay, so if I was doing a water scene and this lotus flower
is going on water, I’d pull this into a more horizontal fashion, because it will take on the look of water. So we want to go this way do we? Yeah, well it doesn’t really matter. Yes, if I was, say, doing a
whale leaping out of the ocean, I would pull this horizontally. And if I was doing forest scenes I’d pull the glad wrap
vertically, so that it gave the impression… Oh of course, of course, yes. You just adapt it to whatever it is that you to paint. Okay,
so where you have white canvas still showing, you can lift the glad wrap and you can spray under it and pull
that colour out, or you can just go back with some more ink. Lift the glad wrap and drop the colour in there. So if you
want loosen the glad wrap to create more texture you just lift it and manipulate the glad wrap. And it’s really… So those bubbles are really going
to sort of create lighter areas? I can see there’s one. So it really draws the colour in around the side of the gladwrap. That’s right. That’s great isn’t it? So we haven’t got enough colour up here, so we just need
to wet that and drop some more colour in there. Cool. I’ll let you do that. So just a little bit of blue. That’s right. This is a really, really cool technique guys.
I just… It’s just fun, it’s just so much fun. Okay so we just lay that back over again. Okay, and then sort of scrunch it up a little bit? Yep, you can scrunch it up, and you just push with
your fingers, all the colour right out to the edge. To the edge, and then it just sort of bleeds off does it? It does. That’s fabulous. Yeah, so… I really like this technique. Okay, so from here, obviously
we don’t want to keep doing it until it turns muddy. What do you normally do, you just take this away on a flat situation? Yeah, I would leave it here to dry, depending on the
weather conditions. It can take a couple of hours to dry. So I just leave it and then come back later
and when it’s dry we take the glad wrap off. And we start on the next one.
Alright we’ll wait til this thing dries then. It’s taken a little time to dry and it looks
fabulous, but before we pull this up, it really… You can’t pull this up if it’s not perfectly dry can you? Well you can, but you won’t get the same patterning effect, Okay. So if you leave it half dry and pull it up the edges will soften out.
So to get more drama we leave it til it’s dry. So what happens now? So you know when it’s dry, because as you lift it, it makes a sound,
like the plastic is stuck to the canvas, so I’ll let you pull that up. I’m going to tear it up. So all I do is I just lift it up? Can you feel it? Oh yeah it really is, isn’t it? Yeah. A little resistance. Yeah. Have a look at it. You can see all of the really thick parts that have
stuck onto it there as well. It’s an amazing pattern isn’t it? Yeah it’s great. It’s just amazing. Yeah, it’s a great effect. Okay. So where do we go from here? Oh, we’re going to paint onto this. So, I’m going to put this
on the easel and I’m going to do a quick outline of the lotus flower and the lily pads in here and then we’re
going to throw paint straight onto it. Sounds cool, let’s go. Okay, well we’ve gone from the flat desk and now we’re
actually at the easel and you’re going to start to create this. It’s a lotus we’re painting is that correct? Yes, yes and the lily pads. Okay, well lets fire away then. What do we do next? Okay, I’m just going to do a very quick outline. I normally do it in black,
so that I can see it on top of all of this colour. Okay, and you just do it with black paint or…? Yeah, I actually use a black gesso for this, because I’m
adding medium onto this after I’ve done the painting I actually want the paint as dry as possible. So if I use
a black acrylic, there’s too much gloss. So I use a gesso because it is a matte black. Sure. So I have a little reference here of the… The lotus? The flower. I’m not going to do it as bright a pink as that, so I’ll
take a little artistic license, but just as a point of reference really, just so I know, okay, and I can work out the placement
onto the canvas. So say the centre of this flower is going to be about here and the centre of the canvas is about here.
So that’s normally my starting point for a painting, is work out if it’s a flower and the centre of the flower and where
that’s going to be and the petals come out from this point here. So I just loosely draw in. Yes. I was going to say that it’s very
loose and free flowing anyway, isn’t it? Yes, and I don’t mind this dry brush effect. I just want
an outline so that when I start applying paint, I sort of know where I’m putting things and that’s
about all the information I want to put down for the flower and I might then just quickly whiz through and decide where
the lily pads are going to sit. So I’ll quickly draw those in. This background is just tone and texture and pattern
as a background. It’s not meant to be a painting. So as the lily pads go off into the distance, the ellipses
become thinner and of course the lily pads become smaller and I might add or subtract from this as I go, but because this line
I’m putting down isn’t a strong line it’s very easy to paint over it and take out what you don’t want.
So that’s about all the information we need. So we would just, obviously you said
that’s going to dry fairly quickly. Yep. And then from there we are just
going to start to build our colours. Yeah. I don’t need to wait for this black out line to dry. So we just move straight on into it? Yeah. Alrighty, so I’m just going to lay out
some colour and I use this glass table. Yeah, I’ve noticed a few artists that do use the glass
cause it’s so much easier to clean as well isn’t it? Oh it’s fabulous, you just wipe it off, you don’t have
to worry about washing ink or paint down the sink. Yeah, I think it’s a great idea. Now all of the colours that I’m using are translucent colours.
I need the colour to be as bright and as translucent as possible. So I have three pots of water I normally set up. I’ll use
one pot for the first wash, second wash and third wash, so I’m not running back and forwards
all the time refreshing the water. And they’re really good points as well because
in the end if you’re only using the one water it just becomes mud after a while doesn’t it? Yeah. So you can see here this colour is a lovely clean
translucent colour and I can then wash over the top of this, so this patterning effect that we
have going on in the back ground. I don’t lose it but it knocks back some of the white
areas that would be to dominant if you left them white. It’s amazing how much you can do and how much
you can create with some fairly simple techniques, but forming something that really
just looks exceptional in the end. Okay, so I’m going to work into this lily pad now. I want to just
knock back the intensity and tone that’s going on there. I want to keep that white paint fairly clean, so it’s no contaminated with other colour. So I’m going
to go into the flower now with a heavier white paint, so I won’t water that back. Smaller brush?
Slightly smaller brush. Well that looks pretty dynamic doesn’t it? I’m not trying to do a perfect painting here. I’m just trying
to get lovely subtle colours going down in the background. All of these edges can be quite soft because I’m going to be
laying down technique, like this piece in the background. And you don’t want hard edges, cause the edges that I’m putting
down are going to be hard on top so these are all soft, that’s good. That’s like the little stamens in the middle is it? Yes the centre of this particular flower is very interesting. It’s sort of a
little circular piece and they sort of come up like fingers. Its still leaving that pattern coming through as well. Yes and I’ll tell you what the colour comes up
beautifully once you add a varnish over the top. So I put a Chroma oil based varnish
over the top and the colour just stands… Yes, it really snaps it, doesn’t it? Okay, so I don’t need this to be perfect because
of the layers that are being put over the top, but at the end even once the technique has gone on, I will come back
and I will dab colour and highlights into the particular areas that I need. So if I need to deepen an area, add a little bit
more shadow, I’m just going to dab a few brush strokes with highlights and shadows. That sort
of finishes the painting off at that stage. Okay, so where do we go from here? So from here I’m just going to throw a little bit of blue paint
into that corner here and that’s it until we lay this on the floor and we’re going to apply three processes after this.
So the first ones going to be black ink and I’m going to poor that out of a bottle.
The next stage will be piping on an outline and the next stage is splattering it with some gold paint. Let’s get into it. Alright Tracey, what do we do?
What’s going to happen now? Okay, I’ve put Indian ink just into a smaller container, just with
a little nozzle top on it and I’m going to pour this onto the artwork. I don’t have to put Indian ink around
everything, but we want to sort of use it, it’s a lovely contrast to the colours that are in here so.
Anything could happen now Graeme. Yes, you could say it’s very free flow isn’t it? Yeah it is. It has to be on the floor, it has to be flat
because otherwise the ink’s going to run off. And it just sort of runs out does it? Yep. Obviously. And it will drop and splatter in different places
as well as I go. So it’s not meant to be an even line, it’s just meant to be very loose rough line,
that I can wander around the canvas. And you’re squeezing the bottle at
all or is it just coming out on its own? No, it just runs out on its own. Oh, okay. If you squeezed it we would have a terrible mess. Very expressive, it really is. I don’t know, it kind of has a bit of an Asian feel about it. Yeah, doesn’t it. Yeah, there’s sort of really no going back is there?
You just have to sort of have to go with the flow. Yes, that’s right. It looks great but. And you don’t want to do an over kill, because
we still have two more processes to do. Okay so we won’t do any more than that, we’ll leave that, but I do have
to go onto the next medium straight away while this is wet. Oh, okay, alright. Well that’s what we’ll do then. And this is the
one that’s actually in a cake decorator mixy-thing-a-me-bob. Piping bag. Piping bag! Ok there you go. It’s a piping bag. Here we go, and it just sort of runs out. Ah look at that,
isn’t it wonderful. That’s great isn’t it? Now I’m not really squeezing this. It’s just running through is it? Yes if you squeeze you’ve got a good
chance you’ll find an air bubble in there and it will go splat and you’ll end up
with this rather ugly mark. But that really sort of lends a great
lightness to the whole thing. Yeah.
It actually gives it a three dimensional effect as well. I have this lightly coloured with cream. I added a little so
that it is not stark white, but you could make this any colour. This is your secret formula; this is your
eleven herbs and spices isn’t it? It is. We can’t tell the audience what’s in this. No, but you would be able to
find a similar medium in an art store. Yes, I think with Chroma they have that new
paint the free flow and I think that it could very possibly do exactly the same as what this is doing. Yep that’s sounds great, I’ve got to give that
a try for sure. So I think it’s probably enough. Great, great stuff. Okay now we put the gold on. We are. I’m using a dagger brush here because
you can see how the paint drips nicely off this brush and I can also get some thin lines, which
again I’ll come back and do some reeds with that. So here we , we’re just going to drop
it and I just use little flicky motions and it doesn’t matter if it lands on the black it
will kind of intermingle with the black as well. And that Atelier gold that you’ve got there, you’ve
actually put a little bit more water in there have you? I have. Yes you just need to break down the
consistency. I love this colour pale gold. Beautiful Chroma colours. It is. Well another fabulous day down here at Merimbula
with Tracey. Thank you so much, it was amazing. Thank you, you’re welcome.
Thank you for sharing your day. Just another incredible technique, so different
once again, and as you can see they’re so much fun. I mean part of being with you
today is that it was a lot of fun too. Oh good. I’m glad you enjoyed it. And also obviously Tracey teaches as well, which
I think is really important. She teaches kids and adults and she gets people from all over the south
east of New South Wales coming into her work shops, so I would suggest that everybody come in and see her for that as well.
Also your website address is board walk art dot com dot au? That’s it. And you can also find Tracey on
Facebook at boardwalk art as well. That’s right. So go in there, tick like of course, and then go and see her.
If you want to do some of the workshops and come down and see her; I really suggest it because she’s
one of those artists that’s extremely versatile, knows tonnes and tonnes of different techniques, and as I said
when we started the show, probably the most organized woman… Oh, that’s sweet. [Laughs] …in the arts field that I have ever met in my life.
So she could teach you a lot about the business of art as well. But absolute pleasure. We’d like to thank our sponsors
of course, Chroma, everybody else that’s involved with us. We’ve got some tremendous things happening these days.
We just love the fact that everyone comes in, talks to the artists, talks to us, there’s just so much going on in the website
these days. Colour In Your Life dot com dot au. Come and see us and talk to us. We’re going to head north again now.
It’s been an absolutely great time down here, the weather has been beautiful, but
until we see you guys again, remember… Yep. Make sure you Put Some Colour In Your Life. Absolutely. We’ll see you
next time guys, Bye. Bye!

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