Top 3 Things You Can Do to Improve Your Paintings Today

By Andy Evansen

1. Do nothing but value studies for a while. I can’t overstate that. You must learn to simplify, and you have to learn to see color as value.

2. Spend time doing nothing but small color thumbnails using a very limited palette. Too many students come in with 60 tubes of paint and spend more time trying to pick the right one than learning how to mix colors. Most of the colors you see in nature aren’t found in a tube. That and working thumbnail size will force you to begin seeing the large important shapes first and foremost.

3. Have a sketchbook with you at all times and draw whenever you have a chance. When students are uncomfortable and timid with their drawing, that sets the tone for an uncomfortable and timid painting.

About the Artist

Watercolorist Andy Evansen’s (“Secrets of Painting Watercolors Outdoors“) love of art began as a child. It wasn’t until the mid-90s when he began his journey into watercolor painting as a change of pace from his career as a medical illustrator. Andy had always been inspired by the watercolor paintings of British artists Trevor Chamberlain, David Curtis, Ed Seago and John Yardley, among others and it wasn’t hard for him to find his style. Today Andy became a signature member of the prestigious Plein Air Painters of America (PAPA) in 2012 and served as their President from 2015-2017. His paintings have won numerous awards, including the Bronze and High Winds Medals from the American Watercolor Society, and he was their demonstration artist for the 2018 Exhibition.

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  1. Having taken workshops from Andy, I can say that the important points deliver the goods! He is the best teaching and best watercolor artist I know. Personality is his 2nd important trait. Everyone loves Andy Evansen.


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