Thumbnails Again

As I’ve mentioned many times,  I find that it is very useful for me to do thumbnail sketches.  I have little cardboard templates of the various sizes of paintings that I use.  I then just trace one of them on paper and I’m ready to do a thumbnail.  These particular thumbnails are all ideas that I’m working on for lessons with my watercolour class.  I take various visual elements that I think will be useful for my class and try to put them together into an effective composition.  The pay off for this effort is that I know if the painting will work with just a 15 minute investment of time, because if it doesn’t work here I can be pretty confident that the painting itself won’t work out.

The first 2 are different versions of a theme of a large stone bridge with some buildings visible above it and then a background of mountains.  I did a painting of the first one (in an earlier post) but now I realize that the second one is a better composition.  If I had known that before I did the painting I could have saved a lot of time.  I also did a painting of the 20″ X 30″ image and as I live with that painting I’m coming to realize it is a very strong composition.

2 thoughts on “Thumbnails Again

  1. Vicki

    I’ve read about this time saver many times and each time I am determined to incorporate it into my art planning. Maybe this time I really will.


    1. Rex Beanland Post author


      Thanks for the comment. For me they are an essential part of the painting process. I keep using them because they help. About a year ago I wrote a post about experimenters. These are people who have to learn things by endlessly experimenting, exploring and trying different things. I am an experimenter. Only occasionally do as a painting just ‘happen’ as if by magic. I have to try different value patterns, colours etc. So for experimenters like me thumbnails are a place to work things out before committing to a larger painting.



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