Last day for orders

5/31/2020 was the last day Bluprint will be taking orders. Learn More

with Val Nelson
Online Class

Loosen Up: Techniques for the Painterly Approach

Get access to every Bluprint class
50% off for a limited time
  • About
  • Projects & Supplies
  • Reviews


Achieve painterly effects while retaining strong structure with lessons from award-winning artist Val Nelson. Create a gesture drawing that captures the volume and energy of multiple elements. Learn essential color mixing theory and tips for avoiding muddiness. Fade details or bring them forward with additive or subtractive techniques. Enhance the spatial quality of your work with lost and found edges. Use brushwork techniques to enliven your work with focal points, movement and volume. Achieve different textures and impressive effects with wet-on-wet and impasto methods. Adjust hues and chromas to the colors and values you want on your canvas. Plus, learn seven questions that will guide your painting to a professional finish. Create painterly paintings with inspired movement and spontaneous energy.


  • intermediate
  • 7 episodes
  • 2h52m

Included in this Class

1. The Gesture

1. The Gesture

Meet painting instructor Val Nelson as you learn how to see and understand the elements that make up a strong composition. Next, learn how to loosely block in the forms as you attempt to draw gesture, add energy and establish relationships between elements.

2. Blocking In Loosely

2. Blocking In Loosely

Start to paint a still life alongside Val as you learn how to mix colors, use medium to help your paint glide across the canvas, and loosely block in the major elements -- this time, in a different medium. Val shares valuable pointers on ways to use additive and subtractive painting techniques, pushing some details into the shadows and pulling others forward.

3. Edges & Values

3. Edges & Values

Explore the boundaries between lost and found edges as you apply value and contrast to your still life. Learn how edges create depth in a painting, guiding the viewer's eye from object to object, making hard edges pop and creating the illusion that some objects are closer to the viewer. Next, discover how to push objects back in space as you add implied boundaries with soft edges, and surround them with similar values and hues.

Recommended with this class

  • Oil paints, brushes, canvas or board
  • Standard art supplies: pencils, pens, surfaces, kneaded eraser, craft knife