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Art Lessons

Art of Painting in Acrylic



"Don't grow up too quickly, lest you forget how much you love the beach." Michelle Held

Giving the appearance of fine texture in a painting has always seemed a difficult task to me. When painting something relatively vast, like a seascape, I tend to gloss over the incredible amount of detail. In The Art of Painting in Acrylic, artist Darice Machel McGuire shows step by step how to create sand and foam in any seascape!

She begins by sketching the main components of the seascape before painting in the sky and clouds.

She paints in the island in the background and then creates an underpainting for the ocean and beach.

Following this step, she tapes off the upper portion of the painting and adds speckled texture to the sandy beach by applying paint to a toothebrush and rubbing her finger across the bristles. She turns the larger spots into pebbles by adding highlights and shadows. 

Images excerpted from The Art of Painting in Acrylic

To create the foam shown above, the artist uses a small filbert brush to scrumble in a mixture of phthalo blue and burnt umber between the sand and water. She then uses the same method with a lighter color to create the abstract patterns of foam. To finish, she builds up the lighter shades closer to the shore and adds shadows to the foam.

To get more tips on painting sescapes in acrylic—as well as glass, foliage, sunsets, falls, fur, figures & portraits, and pop-art animals—check out The Art of Painting in Acrylic!

What would you like to learn how to paint in acrylic?


Olivia Bartz

Olivia is the Marketing Intern for Quarto Publishing Group USA and is excited to graduate from UC Irvine this June with a B.A. in English. She is happiest when reading a good book or writing about her adventures abroad, and continues to be inspired by all things outdoors. Olivia loves to try out new art mediums and techniques but has yet to be disappointed by a pencil and sketchpad.   



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A work of art which did not begin in emotion is not art.

Paul Cezanne

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