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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Pile on the Paint...Using Impasto

'Meadow Dreams'          4x4       oil on panel          ©Karen Margulis
Thick paint and yummy texture!  So far this is what I am enjoying the most about painting with oils. An artist friend commented that she liked the impasto in this painting. I didn't realize I was doing impasto in fact I only sort of knew what impasto was. Well it is true that you learn something new everyday so I researched impasto so I could be more knowledgeable.  So what is impasto? Impasto is an art term used to describe thickly textured paint that is almost three-dimensional in appearance. It can be applied with a brush or palette knife. It is often used in expressive works and the textured paint is an important part of the painting.

My cheap palette knife collection
I came upon the technique of impasto by accident. I was trying to get the larger flowers and some grasses to come forward so I was playing around with my palette knives to lay down thicker blobs of paint. I also discovered that I could use the knife to remove some paint to create more delicate stems and grasses.  I know this is elementary to those experienced with paints and brushes but to this pastelist it is like being a child discovering exciting new things!
If you haven't tried impasto yet don't be afraid of wasting paint while you experiment. I painted small (4x4) so my thick paint went farther!  I have always enjoyed getting texture in my pastels but I haven't found a way to get the same effect as I am getting with oils. I am going to have to give this some thought!

3 comments:

Julie Ford Oliver said...

Very well done - I love the texture and your colors.

robertsloan2art said...

Wow! This is gorgeous. I love the results of your impasto experiments. The delicate stems scraped out are utterly beautiful and the textures sing. It jumps off the canvas like a little bas-relief.

Elainen said...

Love this texture and love the colors.