Drawing across the canvas with random lines that split up the blank as much as possible. Send these lines all the way across the page. Don’t leave anything cut off in the middle of the paper but continue to draw the lines from side to the other, without end.
Purely abstract work, like much of the Abstract Expressionist movement of the 1950s, doesn’t try to look like anything realistic. It is the ultimate rejection of realism and the complete embrace of the subjective. The subject or point of the painting is the colors used, the textures in the artwork, and the materials employed to create it.
Alternate filling the background from black to white in the patterned areas, so that a pattern with a black background is touching a pattern with a white background.
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Some artists copy photographs by projecting them onto a canvas to accurately capture precise details. Others do it freehand or use a grid system to enlarge a print or photo. One of the best-known photorealistic painters is Chuck Close, whose mural-size headshots of fellow artists and celebrities are based on snapshots.
Realism has been the dominant style of painting since the Renaissance. The artist uses perspective to create an illusion of space and depth, setting the composition and lighting such that the subject appears real. Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” is a classic example of realism.
It depends on how much effort and time you dedicate to it for detail, outline and proportion. You could spend an hour on it without putting effort into it, or maybe half an hour for concentration. It varies for different individuals.
Fill some of the shapes in that arise in the areas between all of the lines. Just keep using your pencil. There is no pattern to follow; just make it a block of choices in one part of your canvas.
Abstract paintings and drawings are a playground of visual delights. In abstract art, the artist can create worlds of color and contemplation. Abstract artists use form, color, line, texture, pattern, composition and process to present ideas and evoke emotions in a poetic, nonlinear fashion. An abstract painting can be about any one or combination of these elements.
I personally find that I make abstract art when I have a creative block, then I lose the block and I feel inspired. Then I start to sketch and form an idea.
Painterly style appeared as the Industrial Revolution swept Europe in the first half of the 19th century. Liberated by the invention of the metal paint tube, which allowed artists to step outside the studio, painters began to focus on painting itself. Subjects were rendered realistically, but painters made no effort to hide their technical work.
Yet there’s no doubt what you’re looking at. Objects retain their realistic appearance yet have a vibrancy about them that’s unique to this style. It’s hard to believe that when the Impressionists were first showing their works, most critics hated and ridiculed it. What was then regarded as an unfinished and rough painting style is now loved.
“Of all the arts, abstract painting is the most difficult. It demands that you know how to draw well, that you have a heightened sensitivity for composition and for colours, and that you be a true poet.
This last is essential.” — Wassily Kandinsky
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A brief list of the many different abstract art styles/movements include: minimalism, abstract expressionism, aboriginal art, non-objective, neo-plasticism, color field, lyrical abstraction, post-painterly abstraction, Russian Constructivism, geometric abstraction, and action painting.
Start with a blank canvas. In this case, a simple piece of blank paper. (See Things You’ll Need for size suggestions.)
Impressionism emerged in the 1880s in Europe, where artists such as Claude Monet sought to capture light not through the detail of realism but with gesture and illusion. You don’t need to get too close to Monet’s water lilies or Vincent Van Gogh’s sunflowers to see the bold strokes of color.
To examine an abstract painting or drawing in terms of its style, you need to actively take note of the following areas: form, color, line, texture, pattern, composition and process.
Trace the circle many times with multiple overlapping areas.
The best part of a nothingness is: no one can say its rubbish because it is nothing it doesn’t have to look like anything they don’t know what it is meant to look like so they can’t actually criticize it.
Works best if you use pencil and don’t color it in! Repeat one pattern more than once but spread the patterns that are the same around the page to achieve that randomness that is the essence of your drawing.
If you make the mistake of coloring it in, it might end up looking like this picture. But anything goes really – whatever inspiration grabs you, the artist, is what matters the most. If you decide you want to colour in your nothingness after it is finished, you can use a texta or fine linear to go over the patterns to create a cleaner effect.
The shapes that are smaller would work best in Step 2; spread them out!! Be creative and put your feeling into it! Don’t be afraid to let your creativity “spread out” a lot more than it used to when you first just started experimenting with it.
As the first decades of the 20th century unfolded in Europe and America, painting grew less realistic. Abstraction is about painting the essence of a subject as the artist interprets it, rather than the visible details.
The main unifying element amongst all forms of abstract art is that the work is non-objective and non-representational. This means that the artwork does not intentionally look like anything. Abstract art can be based on a form that exists in reality, or it can be based purely on the imagination. In abstract art, the process is often just as important (if not more important in the experience of the artist), than the final product. There are many ways that an artist can apply paint to an abstract painting, such as rolling, brushing, splattering, dripping, scraping or soaking the paint. Their brushstrokes may be rough and choppy, or fine and delicate. They may work entirely intuitively, creating the abstract painting off the top of their head. Or they might take the pre-planned approach, carefully penciling in the details before putting the brush to canvas. In addition, abstract artists can also attach sand or other forms of texture to the canvas to create an added dimension to the artwork.
In step 3 of Method 1, don’t fill in all the small shapes. This cannot be stressed enough because it affects the overall appearance of your artwork. Be wary of using pen. This is mainly because pen ink often ends up looking like someone’s bored doodle they might make sitting through a long telephone call.
You want art, not banal scribbling. Never give up – “nothingness” is key to abstract art, so you can’t go wrong! If you don’t like something, try adding to it, the worst outcome could be that you still don’t like it.
Use patterns to fill the rest of the spaces. Make sure no single pattern is touching the same pattern.
Paper (not too big or you won’t be able to fill them all in, the biggest you might be able to do within 1 day is A4)
On this website I write about abstraction as both a subject in art and as a style of art. This page will focus on the stylistic qualities of abstract art – that is, what it looks like and what form it takes. To deepen your understanding of the meaning, purpose, history and context surrounding abstract art, I highly recommend reading my other abstract art article.
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Or an artist might remove the subject from its context or enlarge its scale, as Georgia O’Keeffe did in her work. Her flowers and shells, stripped of their fine detail and floating against abstract backgrounds, can resemble dreamy landscapes.
Have you ever considered drawing a “Nothingness”? It is really about abstract drawing, drawing with artistic inspiration without specific intentions in mind but moved totally by the creative spirit. Hard to pinpoint exactly what nothingness ought to be, as that really is up to you – the artist – but it is certainly possible to provide some guidance on setting out on this drawing experience.
Abstract art has the ability to express what other visual art styles cannot. It can address concepts that are intangible and theoretical, existing in the realms of mind and spirit, rather than in outer reality. Abstract art utilizes pure color, shape, and form to express its meaning, without getting bogged down in the storylines carried by objects and scenery. As such, abstract art can touch the emotions in a fresh, raw and powerfully direct way.
Find something small and circular. For example, a cup or a roll of duct tape. Also use a Sharpie™ with both a fine and regular tip for this whole project; it makes it pop more than pen or pencil.
The styles differ in some ways. Expressionists such as Edvard Munch sought to convey the grotesque and horror in everyday life, often with hyper-stylized brushwork and horrific images, such as his painting “The Scream.” Fauvists, despite their novel use of color, sought to create compositions that depicted life in an idealized or exotic nature. Think of Henri Matisse’s frolicking dancers or George Braque’s pastoral scenes.
Part of the joy of painting in the 21st century is the range of available art styles. The late 19th and 20th centuries saw artists make huge leaps in painting styles. Many changes were influenced by technological advances, such as the invention of the metal paint tube and photography, as well as changes in social conventions, politics, and philosophy, along with world events.
A painter may reduce the subject to its dominant colors, shapes, or patterns, as Pablo Picasso did with his famous mural of three musicians. The performers, all sharp lines and angles, don’t look the least bit real, yet there’s no doubt who they are.
Fill in the majority of the shapes left. Use random patterns and similar stuff. Preferably go for big shapes but you’re free to use small ones too. The important essence of nothingness, though, is to follow the random patterns all the time, letting the randomness decide the form for you.
Here’a a quote from the man credited as being the “first” abstract artist in Western art:
Fill in the rest by just putting a cross in them. Go on – try it; it might not seem like a good idea but it will look great.
As its name suggests, the emphasis is on the act of painting: the character of the brushwork and pigments themselves. Artists working in this style don’t try to hide what was used to create the painting by smoothing out texture or marks left in the paint by a brush or other tool, such as a palette knife. The paintings of Henri Matisse are excellent examples of this style.
Realism is the art style most people regard as “real art,” where the subject of the painting looks much like the real thing rather than being stylized or abstracted. Only when examined up close will what appears to be solid color reveal itself as a series of brushstrokes of many colors and hues.
Jackson Pollock’s drip paintings might look like a gigantic mess to some, but there’s no denying that murals such as “Number 1 (Lavender Mist)” have a dynamic, kinetic quality that holds your interest. Other abstract artists, such as Mark Rothko, simplified their subject to colors themselves. Color-field works like his 1961 masterwork “Orange, Red, and Yellow” are just that: three blocks of pigment in which you can lose yourself.
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Expressionism and Fauvism are similar styles that began to appear in studios and galleries at the turn of the 20th century. Both are characterized by their use of bold, unrealistic colors chosen not to depict life as it is but as it feels or appears to the artist.
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‘Abstact’ is an adjective meaning ‘existing in thought or as an idea but not having a physical or concrete existence, or dealing with ideas rather than events.’
If you like my abstract art, check out my printable Abstract Coloring Book with 20 pages of intricate abstract line art to fill in with COLOR!
This list outlines seven major art styles, from the most realistic to the least. Learning about different styles, seeing what painters have created, and trying different approaches are parts of the journey toward developing your own painting style. Although you won’t be part of the original movement—a group of artists who generally shared the same painting style and ideas during a specific time in history—you can still paint in the style they used as you experiment with and nurture your own style.
Although abstract art exists as a general style describing non-objective art, there are many, many different styles within the genre. Each style of abstract art serves its own particular meaning or agenda. In addition, each artist has his or her own individual style. For example, some artists use many colors, while others use minimal color. Some abstract artists incorporate lots of patterns and details, and others just paint vast blocks of color. There are artists who focus on the push and pull of negative and positive space (or other formal qualities), while others focus on visual story-telling. In short, there are many different ways to approach abstract art!
Photorealism developed in the late 1960s and ’70s in reaction to Abstract Expressionism, which had dominated art since the 1940s. This style often seems more real than reality, where no detail is left out and no flaw is insignificant.