The Angelu from many Paintings – Paitning Tips from K.L. Britton Art

Last night’s effort entailed a sketch.  I considered taking it further – I had another hour left to paint, but decided to put down the brush (really, in order to read my book.)  One struggle I’m having is with the lighting for my set up.  It’s a cool day-light, but I think it’s just TOO cool.  Working in different light temperatures affects your paint mixes – the cooler your light, the warmer your mixture will be to compensate.  If you use a warm light, your paintings may come out very cool due to the lighting differences.  Imagine mixing a “yellow” under a yellow light.  Even titanium white looks yellow already in the right light conditions.  The same can be said for blue, and cool light.

Screen Shot 2017-09-29 at 9.58.30 AM

I did manage to get this more or less neutral, but its a lot warmer than I saw it on the easel.  Getting a great, balanced light is one of the essentials in your set up, but as you can see, you *can* work with the wrong lights, it’s just not ideal.

Thank you for reading!












Sketching Every Day – Daily Painting by K.L. Britton Los Angeles

This was a quick sketch I did last night before the sunset.  It was pretty much a rush – the small light I have is a bit too cool for this type of painting – it makes me mix all of the colours very warm.  Composition was my main concern on this one.  This is a 1920s dress from ebay, but you can’t really tell from the painting.

Screen Shot 2017-09-28 at 2.10.11 PM

Thank you for reading!

The Old’ Days – Daily Paintings by K.L. Britton, Los Angeles Artist

This time I wanted to try an interesting style, similar to the one I do my still-lives with, but on another subject.  Since I’ve been limiting myself to 6″x6″ canvases in order to get finished paintings and balance my day job, I have to get very creative in how I want to represent my subject.  As much as  a pen in the middle looks great, I want to draw and paint more than just the standard.

Here I did some experimenting with composition, and I love the way it came out.  Instead of my usual painting method of a basic outline and mixing separate shadows for each colour, I did a grisalle-style underpainting that was careful and filled in the shadows.  You can see some of this in my still lives, that’s how I used to fill them in so quickly.  Since the paint is still wet, that shadow comes through in the paint on top, so your shadows go in easily.  Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a quick fix, there is still a ton of mixing and decisions on saturation and colour variations to make despite how easy it sounds.  It did, however, allow me to put more into my painting and still finish before my hot date.

Screen Shot 2017-09-25 at 10.16.27 AM

6″x6″ oil on linen.  This is me in an Innocent World (IW) JSK and Bolero set.  That was a nice set, I should have kept it.  I’m going to try this style a couple more times before I start using it on larger canvases!  I think it’s a good excuse to get a couple more Lolita coords – I only have one or two at home now.

Thanks for reading, as always!

The Fountain (pen) A MontBlanc Special

Yesterday I did quite a bit of sketching – the first real day I’ve felt somewhat better since my ordeal in Berlin.  I’m working on trying different styles, and am only really limited by however much time I have to do these little 4×6 sketches, but I have some really fun things planned.

Screen Shot 2017-09-25 at 10.16.36 AM.png

With this painting, I just wanted to simplify.  It took maybe 30 minutes, maybe less.  I love this pen so much, though, it was a joy to look at it.  Even better to write with!

Thank you for reading!

The Trip That Failed – Travels and Painting

So I went to Berlin, intending to paint every day.  Instead, I ended up relapsing into the infection that I had before – apparently the antibiotics didn’t work.  At about 30 days of constant sickness, I ended up going to the doctor in Germany, who tried another antibiotic.  So I spent most of the trip simply sleeping/laying down/resting and bone tired, the kind of lethargy only a body wide infection could cause.  Imagine having the flu for 30 days – this is how I felt!  Not to mention the 13 hour flights, the layovers, and jet lag.  So far, I am at least coughing less.

So I’m back, now I can paint again because I can suffer in my own home.  I couldn’t find anything to paint and my wonderful other half suggested I paint this vase – problematically, the light kept moving across it but hey – at least it’s painting!

4″x6″ oil on linen.


Screen Shot 2017-09-24 at 2.53.14 PM

Thank you for reading everyone!

A Look Inside My World – Art Tips by K.L. Britton

I’ve always shied away from painting hands.  I have two major portraits that included hands, but in 90% of my paintings, I only just “indicate” the hands.  There are some major reasons for this:

Hands take almost as much time as portraits for me.  They are so incredibly detailed, and there is a lot of measuring.  For me, the amount of work that goes into a hand might even be MORE than a portrait, since portraits are my focus and have become easier for me to complete.  It’s all about practice time, though.

Alla Prima Hand Oil Painting Tips and How Tos

Instead of shying away, I have decided to embrace all of the things that bother me on a regular basis: Hands, Ankles, Feet, Legs… Arms.. Noses!  Pretty much everything!  Since I have my happy little Edge Pro Gear Sketchbook easel setup, it’s easy for me to go from one study to the next.  It’s also easy for me to sit my little easel in front of the TV and paint from the couch with a movie on.  So here is my start of a hand study.  You may recognize this from the digital version I did before.

Screen Shot 2017-09-12 at 7.57.11 AM

The block in is just large shapes.  I’ve broken it down into a rectangle and some sausages of varying widths.  Remember that the thumb comes from the side of the rectangle, the fingers from the top of the rectangle, and the knuckles will be settled inside the rectangle.  These things are hard to explain in words, but I highly recommend finding those large shapes with hands.  Use angles to find out how your fingertips flow, as you can see I outlined the “angles” of the fingertips before I drew them in.

Screen Shot 2017-09-12 at 7.57.02 AM

Here’s the fun part.  Instead of doing one middle tone across the hand, I used variations.  Darker values for the farther planes (the joint of the thumb closer to the hand rectangle, the plane of the hand that’s not highlighted, and several sections of the fingers.)  This helped me visualize these fingers as three dimensional.  Another couple things I do for fun: Add cad red or alizarin crimson, or a mixture of the two, to all the mixtures of paint that come from the fingertips.  If you look closely, the tips are a bit reddish.  Another area I use this mixture is the knuckles.  These two areas get and show a significant amount of blood flow.  I enjoy exaggerating it.

Stay tuned for more tips as I work my way along this study.  But I will let you know, I’m packing today to leave for Berlin tomorrow!  I will be painting out there, so this hand study might be put on hold until I get back.  I’ll have plenty to share in Berlin, though!

Thank you for reading!

Studies for Days – the Nose Knows – K.L. Britton Art

Yesterday’s adventure involved watching a movie while painting a nose study.  Why a nose, you may ask?  Because in my original painting of this portrait, the nose and right eye both came out a little off.  Instead of shying away, I’m practicing, and when I put it all back together again, maybe it will improve my results.  This is also what I teach my students in my personalized online art classes.  

You’ve got to start with the basics, and then take the time to put them all in the right spot.  The struggle with my beginner students is their desire to put all the details in, and ignore the overall picture.  Often, this will lead to one very realistic eye in the right place, one less realistic eye in the wrong place, and the other features breezed over  in a game of face roulette.  Learn how to do the details (eye, nose, lips, etc) and then take your time putting them together.  Check in a mirror, check in a thumbnail, step way back to check, and then check again.

K.L. Britton Art tips Noses Oil on Linen

Thank you for reading!!


More paintings, because that’s how I roll. K.L. Britton Art Los Angeles

K.L. Britton Los Angeles Gallery of Art small Painting

The Sailor, 6×6 Oil on Panel – Available for purchase here.

One of my other obsessions is fountain pens.  This is a Sailor 1911 Extra Fine with a beautiful gold nib and it writes like a dream.  Had to paint it, of course.

Los Angeles Gallery of Art K.L. Britton

You can find the digital version of this study a few posts back.  I may do yet another – this stunning study by Sargent uses a very limited palette, almost a Zorn palette, and yet it conveys so much.  His is unfinished, and so is mine.  6×6 Oil on panel.

Los Angeles Gallery of Art - K.L. Britton Edge Pro Gear Sketchbook Pro Setup in Malibu

My Sketchbook pro setup in the wild.  What an easy setup – I was on, painted, and cleaned up in under an hour!

Thanks for reading!

Oils for Days – The Edge Pro Gear Sketchbook Pro Effect ;)

So in recent news, I got my Edge Pro Gear Sketchbook on the 25th – and I love it.  That’s the long and short of it.  I’ve been able to use it for small studies and since they’re small, I’ve been doing tons of them.  Here is a selection of my first couple.

K.L. Britton Los Angeles Gallery of Art Edge Pro Gear Sketchbook Pro Setup Review

My setup in the wild, on my beautiful Koreatown balcony.  I love the rich historical architecture here, and every sunrise and sunset is an incredible inspiration.  The huge advantage of being in L.A.? The weather is good 99% of the time.  Here is the first study I did on the 28th.  Yay.

The Details:

What I love about the Edge pro gear sketchbook

Portable, easy, strong clamps.  Easy remove palette, so I can stick it in the fridge when I’m not painting for a day.  The magnetic turp jar has never fallen over… It’s a world record!   It also contains a gentle cheese hole area where you can wipe your brushes, my brushes come out 90% clean, and I usually only have to soap them once to finish the job.

K.L. Britton Los Angeles Gallery of Art Edge Pro Gear Sketchbook Pro Setup Bad Review

What I don’t like about Edge Pro Gear Sketchbook, the bad review.

I really only have one complaint… maybe two!  My main gripe is just that my long handled brushes don’t stay on well.  Since they don’t hold on both sides on the tables, they are easy to knock down.  However, my standard handled brushes work great, and I’ve simply switched to a more portable setup with the standard ones!  Easy fix.  My other complaint is that I got a far, far better tripod than the one they sell for a fraction of the price.  My tripod is sturdy, reliable, and beautiful, and cost about $70 on amazon.  It’s more or less an off-brand.  The one they offer online only holds about 2-3 lbs, so if you want to use this tripod with the bigger Edge Pro Gear, you can’t.  The one I got weighs almost the same as the one they sell, but it holds up to 8 lbs – so I can use whichever setup I want when I get myself the larger Edge Pro for Christmas 😉

Overall, it has increased my productivity a millionfold.  I’ve finished more oil paintings in the last two weeks than I had in the whole blackout, where I was concentrating on drawing.  I am very, very pleased.

Screen Shot 2017-09-10 at 7.40.22 AM

Thank you for reading!