Tuesday, January 10, 2012

My First Ever Oil Painting :D


2011 December Holidays

Oil on Canvas

Last holidays, I thought that I should learn some new skills to enrich myself! So I decided to try out oil painting as I have never tried it before!
 The painting looked quite different from the original picture as it had been simplified(the original picture is complicated). Well, the table is slanted as in the original picture, the table is slanted too...

PERSONAL REVIEW: I was quite satisfied with the 2 roses that are facing the front. Well, it is painted in broad brushstrokes, almost like the impasto style! I did not mix the colours of these roses so I just applied curved brushstrokes of pink and white circular motion and let the colours just take its natural state(this sentence does not seem to make any sense >.<)! Well, I was quite surprised at the outcome of these 2 flowers! I just wanted to experiment with the brushstrokes as sensei saw me trying to paint the petals of the roses one by one and she told me that that was too tiring and that I should try different brushstrokes! I also like the shadows produced by the petals! The effect was quite natural.

However, there are some areas that I should improve on too! Some of other roses are shaped quite weirdly and distorted as I lost the outline drawings made by charcoal(well, sensei asked me to use a charcoal to draw on the canvas instead of using a pencil), so I kind of lost the shape of the roses. Conclusion, I painted the petals with my imagination as I was lazy to refer to the picture(the picture was quite tiny by the way). It was a bad choice I guess. >.< Should have observed the picture more carefully. There is also a lack of details in the leaves as I was rushing to complete this painting so that I can start on the second one.

LEARNING POINTS: Through the first painting, I had learnt a fair bit about oils. Well, they take like at least 3-4 days to dry, so it can be a pro or con depending on the situation. They can also be added in layers, after the bottom layers dry, so as to give the painting a sense of richness and wholeness. Well, I really appreciated that fact as on my first lesson, I still had some parts of the canvas unpainted with the base colour. Well, so since I had loads of pink paint left on my palette, sensei asked me to just colour all the places that are unpainted with the leftover pink paint!!!! I was like totally shocked! O.O It would look worse than a three year old kid painting if I did that, so I asked her why. Well, I do not really get her reasoning behind it but she said something like it will kind of emphasise the flowers when the painting is completed or something like that... Anyway, in the end, it turned out okay so I am very very relieved...(: Sensei also asked me to use a lot of colours for the background too. It looks like it is black but actually, it is a mixture of red,brown,dark blue, green...So I feel that the colour applied is quite rich as there are so many colours combined together! For the shading of the vase, sensei actually asked me to apply dark blue paint directly onto the light brown vase and when I applied it, due to the fact that the light brown paint is not dry yet, light brown +dark blue= dark brown! (: It is like mixing the paint directly on the canvas!  Oils are really nice to blend and the countless effects that you can create with oils are just simply amazing!!!!! (: For example, you can create really thick impasto which literally pops out very three dimensionally on your canvas!  There is an endless list of things that you can do with oils, just that you have to slowly discover the uniqueness of oils with experimentation! (:

I just thought that this painting can relate to Van Gogh's Sunflowers! (:



  1. Hey XinYing!

    This painting is so beautiful, especially because it is your first attempt!
    I love how you made use of the colours and brightened up the entire painting. The black background was also cleverly painted which could bring out the beauty of the flowers in the foreground due to its simplicity, giving more attention and focus on the main subject matter (the flowers).
    Furthermore, the colours which you have used were not muddy or dull. I know sometimes oil painting can cause colours to become dull and earthly, but you managed to maintain the hues and tones vividly most obvious in th flower petals.
    In terms of blending, the vase was very well done, and I can see how you really put an effort to paint the vase especially. I could see shadows and light hitting on the vase, giving it its 3-dimensional form.
    In my opinion, perhaps you could have painted the vase with more details? I thought that the vase was abit too plain because the background was already quite plain. To give more emphasis on the roses and the vase in the foreground, perhaps some details such as ornamental designs could have been included on the vase.
    I am sure your oil painting techniques would improve even further with more practice! It's a wonderful painting!

  2. Hi Xinying,

    great job!

    Good balance in colour and contrast. I love the way you rendered the vase, because it looks so real and it has that visual texture similar to a piece of pottery.

    The shadows could be altered abit so they would look more realistic; now it looks a little like the plant pot is floating slightly in the air. Could there be a way on how to make the pot seem more connected to the table? Hm I'd suggest have faint dark outlines around the curvature of the base of the pot so there is greater visual distinction.

    You could sharpen the roses so they look more realistic by having sharp edges and not blending them.