How to become a BETTER artist

Every so often I am asked what it takes to become a better artist. There are several crucial answers to that question, in my opinion, but the #1 thing you MUST do to become a better artist is to study art! To grow as an artist you need to continually look at other artwork and study composition, color, and techniques.

As with anything in life, mastering your art takes learning and constant work on your part. I have combed through hundreds of art books and articles, watched over 1,000 art instruction videos on Youtube, spent endless hours beneath the roofs of galleries and museums, and have followed more artists than I care to count.

All of this has made me the painter that I am today.

So my personal advice to you would be to immerse yourself in the world of art…and never come up for air. If your desire is to become a successful professional artist,  you have to make it your life’s mission to develop yourself! If you develop your mind and eye first, your artwork will take care of itself.

Here are some paintings by a couple of my favorite artists:

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For those of you that are familiar with my 3-D beach paintings, you can see the influence on my art that these paintings have had. And if it wasn’t for my relentless research over the past 5 years, I would have never discovered these artists and fell in love with their work.

Here is a link to my online shop, where you can see the thick textures and unique qualities of my beach paintings up close and personal https://www.etsy.com/shop/RKBeachPaintings

So to all of you creators out there, learn everything you can about your chosen media. It will add to your depth as a creator and help you find your own special voice that will set you apart from the sea of other artists.

Happy Thanksgiving, and I wish you all a beautiful holiday filled with family, love, and togetherness.

Ryan Kimba

http://www.ryankimbaart.com

 

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Finding Your *True North*

When I was a child I used to travel up north with the guys in my family every labor day weekend. It was always an eventful time, to say the absolute least. Splashing in the icy waves of lake superior, camping, jumping off of piers, hiking, and spelunking in waterfalls! I LOVED going to northern Michigan. There are so many special moments in my heart.

And since I’ve been feeling nostalgic as of late, I decided to create a palette knife painting creating my “ideal” version of the Lake Superior shoreline. I added several elements to rope the viewer in and make it more exciting.

back-to-boyhoodBack to Boyhood. Oils on canvas 11×14″

For those of you who don’t know me–I am a beach artist that specializes in bold and textured paintings using only palette knives. I glop the paint on super thick, creating an almost 3-D like effect that is very interesting.

You can view my paintings at http://www.ryankimbaart.com

Here is an up-close sample revealing my knife work:

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The big news is that I will be coming to Youtube in the near future. I will be starting my own channel which will be an art tutorial/self-development channel. It has been a long time coming and I am very excited about it. Of course, I’ll let you know when I’ve got my first video up!

Until next time, bring some color into the world. As fellow visionaries, it is your duty. Make something beautiful!

Ryan Kimba

http://www.etsy.com/shop/RKSeascapePaintings

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Let’s Paint a Seascape: Part 2! An Art Lesson with Ryan Kimba

So I shattered my finger last week and I’ve been out for the count. However, I will say that my hand is feeling much better and I’m looking forward to being able to paint again (I’m right handed).

For this post we will be painting a new tropical seascape painting in oils from start to finish. We’ll be using palette knives on a stretched canvas. To take a look at what specific colors I use on my palette, visit

https://ryankimba.wordpress.com/2016/07/31/bringing-color-to-the-world-a-peak-into-my-palette/

 

So…Let’s get started!

 

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First we’ll grab some Phalo blue and begin painting the sky portion. For the horizon line, I like to put a piece of tape down to keep it straight. When using palette knives, it’s important to try not to be intimidated by working loose. Just go from side to side with the knife blade, making the blue lighter as you go down. It should feel like you are buttering a large piece of toast!

 

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Now  that the blue is laid down, we can start adding clouds. To ensure that the Titanium white doesn’t mix with the blue, you’ll need to apply it pretty thick onto the canvas. Experiment a little so that you can feel more comfortable with using the knife.

 

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To add the ocean, I used a mixture of Pthalo blue and Ultramarine blue, two of 3 blues I have on my palette. They are my favorite colors to work with. Mix them together and create the base color for the ocean and bring the paint up to the horizon. Try to keep the water line as straight as possible.

 

step-6

Now we will begin working on the sand. Mix Titanium white with a tiny speck of Burnt Sienna to get an off-white sandy color. Paint this below the sea to start the sand, but don’t go too far down the bottom of the canvas because that area will be getting covered up with vegetation.

 

step-7

Now you can take some straight Pthalo blue (which is dark out of the tube) to begin making the shadows in the waves. You can decide in what areas you’d like some waves. That is the fun part about painting! Here you can see where I ended the sand.

 

step-8

I’d like to add a palm tree on the right side of the foreground. To do this we need to scrape the paint off, making the actual shape of the palm tree. This is the easiest way to do this because if you don’t scrape the paint off you will have a hard time. You can do this with the tip of the knife blade. The paint will come right off the support except for the paint shadow (stain).

 

step-10

In painting wet on wet, it’s always simplest to paint light colors over dark. Now this is a general rule. It certainly doesn’t apply to every situation. Add some Green Earth and black to the palm tree. To get a rich vibrant black color, add Ultramarine Blue with Burnt Sienna. At the bottom of this painting will be a forest of sea grapes. Lay down a medium shade of green to get the base color for the plants.

 

step-11

From the original base color mixture, simply add Cadmium Yellow Light and Titanium white to lighten it, and black and Cadmium Yellow Medium to darken it. This will give you several interesting shades for the leaves of the sea grapes. If you need to look at photos of the plants, that is always helpful. Feel free to make them as congested as possible for a more realistic effect.

 

step-12

Now we can add some waves to our ocean! This is always my FAVORITE part! To do this, put some globs of white on the back side of the blade tip and begin making little sweeps. If some mixes with the blue, no problem. But make sure that some bright white is applied for the foam of the waves in the light.

 

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From there we can go ahead and start bringing the palm tree to life. This is the most time-consuming process of the painting. You can be as detailed as you’d like or you can go for a more abstract look. It’s totally up to you.

 

step-14

To give the piece more character I decided to add some chairs and umbrellas on the beach in the background. Don’t worry about details. All you really need are the impressions of the objects in the distance.

 

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Here are the sea grapes up close. You can see that each leaf is a glob of thick paint. And since we are painting thickly with knives, it creates textures and shadows for a nice 3-D type of look.

 

Here is the finished painting, called “View from the Top.”

 

 

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View from the top     18×24 inches…oils on canvas

And that is all there is to it! It is so fun and everyone can learn how to do it with practice and dedication. Most of painting is not about learning tricks; it’s about learning how to see. And if you are enjoying my these tutorials, be sure to follow my blog or leave me a comment below.

I hope you all had a fantastic weekend, and I will talk to you soon.

Until next time, let’s bring some color into the world. It really needs it.

–Ryan Kimba

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http://www.ryankimbaart.com/

https://www.etsy.com/shop/RKBeachPaintings?ref=hdr_shop_menu

How Bad Do you Want It?

I LIKE turtles

A few years ago I was doing an author symposium at Eastern Michigan University. I was there to promote my children’s book I had just gotten published, titled “Sea Beds,” and it was a very exciting time for me! After the event ended I had a long line of eager friends, family, and strangers lined up to get a copy of the book and a picture with the author. After I finished signing all of their copies for the night, a young man with thick-framed glasses and a tucked in shirt came up to talk to me. He was timid and uneasy…I could tell that right away.

“Hey Shaun. Can I get your advice on something?” he mumbled in a soft tone.

“Of course! What can I do for you?” I said.

“I am wrote a novel and was wondering how to get it published??? What do you think? I could use some direction.”

I asked him what his novel was about and what he ultimately wanted to do with it. Did he want to get it edited, published, sold, etc… Then I told him about how I had to pay for a publicist to help me market my book. That is usually the case for most first-time, unknown authors. His response to that was exactly as I had expected.

“WHAT!? I’m going to have to pay? That’s ridiculous! I shouldn’t have to pay anyone a dime to put out my book.”

I knew he wouldn’t go anywhere as a writer. And it wasn’t because he didn’t have the guts, passion, or talent to do it. It was because he was not willing to do whatever it took to achieve his goal. That’s why he won’t be a successful author. Unless he changes, that is. I told him he wasn’t ready to proceed with his plans and he stomped away. Looking back, I’m glad I didn’t steer him in the wrong direction by telling him what he wanted to hear.

My point is this…whatever your dream may be, you have to take FULL responsibility in making it happen. No one is going to do it for you. To put it bluntly–if you aren’t willing to spend or invest the money, to make the contacts, or risk countless rejection, or put in 16 hour days, or to be humiliated and uncomfortable on a regular basis—then you don’t deserve to your dream. If you are ready to sacrifice, then the world is at your feet.

And I’m rooting for you!

Starting an art career is a lifelong journey. It is not a sprint. It is a MARATHON. Put in everything you have and you will get it back in full. I promise you. I know I have a long way to go to becoming a world-renowned seascape painter, making six-figures a year from the sales of my art, and being able to travel around the world. But you can bet your boots that I will make that happen, no matter how long it takes.

That is MY dream. And it is non-negotiable! What is your dream? And are you willing to do whatever it takes to realize it?

 

Etsy Banner

I wanted to share with you my new banner I created for my page on etsy. I think it represents my new pallete knife paintings very well 🙂 Below is the link to my shop for you to check out

https://www.etsy.com/shop/RKSeascapePaintings?ref=hdr_shop_menu

 

So until next time,

Do what you love to do! And do ALL that you can do.

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http://www.ryankimbaart.com/

http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/ryan-kimba.html

Middle School Memories!

One day in 8th grade art class I got kicked out of my room for fooling around, like I usually did. The teacher came into the hall and proceeded to tell me “you will NEVER go anywhere as an artist!” Wow! Was that ever a shocking and awful thing to hear at such a tender developmental stage in my creative life.

The problem is that I must have carried that with me, even if only unconsciously. To this day I still hear a voice in my head that tells me I’m not good enough. Yet the thing is, that voice does not come from ME. It is the collective byproduct of everything anyone has ever told me. And most of those are negative, I have to add.

The negative voices in our heads come from other people!

What things do you tell yourself that have no basis in reality?

 

I can think of a few things artists hear on a regular basis:

 

“Get a REAL job!”

“You can’t make money selling art.”

“Art is just a hobby.”

“Artists are lazy and insubordinate.”

“You won’t be recognized until you are dead.”

“My 5 year old daughter could paint that!”

Good grief! Is it any wonder why artists have such low self worth and self esteems? I guess what I am trying to say is that you need to believe in yourself. That is the only way you can become successful. I thank Mrs. Boyle for what she said to me all those years ago, because it gave me the fire to prove her and everybody else wrong. It gave me a reason for being.

Don’t forget to check out my new shop on etsy

https://www.etsy.com/shop/RKSeascapePaintings?ref=hdr_shop_menu

 

And until next time,

Put some good voices in your head! And those can only come from you 🙂

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https://www.facebook.com/Ryan-Kimba-Seascape-Painter-1058228814241949/

http://www.ryankimbaart.com/

Commissions PLEASE!

As an artist there is no greater experience than painting a personal commission for a client. At this moment I have just finished up my third commission in the last couple of weeks. I always welcome commissions because they afford me the chance to stretch myself as a creator.

All in all I have been doing commission work for about 10 years now! I’ve painted people’s pets (dogs, cats, turtles!) animals, their homes and families, their businesses, even dreams they had while sleeping! The most satisfying part about doing this is seeing the look of joy and wonderment on a client’s face. A lot of times I have seen tears. It isn’t just about the money for me. Their reactions validate my abilities as a painter.

Here is the most recent piece I’ve finished and delivered. It is a scene of a beach in Siesta Key, Florida, where the client has been traveling since she was a little girl. Here you can see the start and finish…..

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It’s always incredible to watch a painting come to life! Starting with a blank white canvas and creating a world inside of it. That is what I love to do. And of course, I was lucky that she happened to want a seascape.

So for all of you artists out there, whether you work with ceramics, oils, acrylics, mixed media, or graphite—make sure not to pass up the opportunity to make someone else’s vision come to life. I promise it is a very challenging and gratifying experience.

Don’t forget to check out my new listings for sale on etsy

https://www.etsy.com/shop/RKSeascapePaintings?ref=hdr_shop_menu

Or you can follow me on facebook at   https://www.facebook.com/Ryan-Kimba-Seascape-Painter-1058228814241949/

Until next time,

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http://www.ryankimbaart.com/

http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/ryan-kimba.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Whole New World…

Hello!

My name is Ryan and I’d like to welcome you to my first blog post, which I’m sure will be one of many more to come. As an artist, I tend to pour my soul into my work. I’d like to do the same thing here. I believe that creative blogs are perfect outlets to educate, enrich, and inspire. So with that being said, hopefully I can inspire you in one way or another.

I love painting realistic seascape paintings in oils. My journey has led me to here. I started out painting portraits, people’s homes and pets, animals, and landscapes. Now I’ve discovered that my voice and style belongs to the sea. Below is one of my beach paintings.

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As you can probably see, the above painting is bright, packed with color, peaceful, soothing, and tranquil. These qualities are indicative of my work as a visual artist. My art is not about me. It is about my viewers. I know that when I go into a gallery, attend an art fair, or just look at random art hanging on the wall—I apply it to ME. I think we all do that. We all have a visceral, gut reaction to the art we love or enjoy. For my viewers, I want to sweep them away to a warm, bright, and relaxing beach…a HAVEN of reflection and renewal!

I’ve recently opened a store on Etsy, where all of my new paintings are available for sale. I’m currently working very hard to promote and get my art business off of the ground. You can visit

https://www.etsy.com/shop/RKSeascapePaintings

 

I hope you have a wonderful evening, and I look forward to my next blog.

All the best,

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http://www.ryankimbaart.com/

https://www.facebook.com/Ryan-Kimba-Seascape-Painter-1058228814241949/