The Benefits of Working Small With a Big Brush

“There are so many benefits from working small!” says Tiffanie Mang. “I make all my students do it. Working small AND working with a big brush really forces you to simplify, which is the NUMBER 1 thing I tell my students to do. Since you cannot fiddle with detail, you are forced to rely on well designed shapes to form a cohesive painting. Readability and unity is the goal, not detail.

“It is also a great challenge to work small, and who doesn’t love a challenge? For plein air when you are on a time restraint, it can be very beneficial to jot down quick color notes on a small area. It is also good to throw your brain off course and challenge it with exercises it is not used to, because I guarantee that when you go back to painting bigger, you will discover new realizations and concepts to apply to your bigger paintings that you didn’t find before.”

Tiffanie Mang is a digital illustrator and gouache plein air artist born and raised in San Diego. She studied at the University of Southern California, graduating with a BA in Animation and Digital Arts in 2014. Aside from working in the animation industry as a freelance concept artist, Tiffanie’s biggest passion is telling stories and creating landscapes through shapes and light in gouache and digital media.

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