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Not really learning much ... just my opinion ...

I am finding that I am loosing interest in the forum, I had thought that I would learn from other people’s techniques and experiences but it all has gone a bit flat.  Mark advises to paint beautiful things and to make each painting your masterpiece. I do see a few painting, just a few which I rate as very good, interesting and informative.  I find most pretty poor quality and boring, subjects of little interest and some darn right weird.  It has become a back slapping exercise and if I see the word awesome again I think I will throw up...
 Then there are the endless threads where the paintings take forever to complete with an update on every little progress, it literally like watching paint dry. 
I need more educational non technical advice with beautiful subjects and interesting information on how they were achieved. I do understand that beauty is subjective but please less fruit, silver jugs and endless ‘samey’ landscapes.
I hope I haven’t offended too many people, I believe the forum could be more inclusive and interesting ... or perhaps this forum is not for people like me. 

Ossie ... 


  • Sorry you feel that way, @Ossie:/
  • Ossie
    OK make it more interesting. Set up some challenges. Post a photo, offer a prize for the best. It’s your Forum too.

    for example: paint this - no brushes allowed - fingers, knives, tissues, crushed paper etc fine.

  • edited May 3
    Hi @Ossie,
    I agree that the forum has been flat for a while.
    I guess its about expectations, personally I don't come to the forum with the expectation of learning necessarily Mark provides a ton of videos for that.
    I have had some helpful advice though, especially when I get so involved in a painting I've lost sight of some mistakes.
    Ive done a few of those thread showing how a painting I am doing is progressing and generally the feedback is that it is welcomed.

    It seems what you are looking for may be gained from watching videos of more established artists, and there are many of those around who provide free content.

    Things are not always what we expect.

    At least you have been honest. While no one is obliged to add to the forum its more than a little uneven for you to criticise those that do, when the extent of your contribution appears to be a rather scathing critique.

    Happy painting
  • Back when Mark established this site, said that it is a stepping off place, a place to learn, and to eventually to go on your own.  The color checker is an aid to help you eventually judge color/value with out it.

    I, too, have longed for more, and spent, and do still spend a lot of time browsing through youtube looking for painting videos that offer actual instruction.  There are very, very few where the artist tells you what he's doing.

    Ultimately, it's up to you to dig out the information

    I've been painting (trying to paint) for around 20+ years, and in all that time I've found only one artist who actually tells you with almost every stroke what colors he's using and why.  He is John Howard Sanden.  Look him up.  You can find some of his work on youtube.  It may inspire you to buy one or two of his educational videos.  Most of his efforts are in portraiture, but the lessons he teaches can be applied to any effort.
  • @Ossie You will probably find that specific questions will get you specific answers. You can't expect people on a free forum to write up blog style posts on a regular basis. I am new at painting but have made a lot of progress by asking specific questions each time I complete a painting. Maybe I am contributing to what you dislike about the forum but you might find it helpful to do the same.
  • edited May 4
    1) The main purpose of this forum, we should admit, is to raise the rating of the DMP website in Google search results. The more words related to painting that are typed on this website, the better is its rating and the higher is its place in the list of relevant websites. 

    2) In my opinion, the DMP approach is not about ART. It is mostly about a technique of colour checking (which is hardly original) and some other technical things in oil painting. 

    3) As I can see, people posting on this forum come here for many reasons not necessarily related to art per se. Among these reasons are lack of support in personal life, lack of communication at intellectual level adequate to their own intellectual level or many other hardships they encounter in their personal lives. Nobody can blame them for that or even ask for more/different input to this forum. 

    Most of participants are sensitive and kind grown-ups who know how hard it might feel to be rejected or criticised especially at the very beginning of any new endeavor. That is why they mostly support, but never criticize, others unless they have been asked directly. Even then, they feel akward and often apologize for their critique.

    4) Many participants are extremely experienced and knowledgeable people in various areas.  They often offer original in-depth analyses and solutions to matters related to painting and art in general.

    5) @Ossie , as a person from non-Western culture, I often feel puzzled, to say the least, by this overkilling sweetness of people to each other and honestly, would prefer to be tought, corrected, even criticized rather than always be praised because, in my opinion, praise is just an acknowledgement of what you already have done well, while critique is a direction to improvement.

    I would suggest, if I may,  ask intelligent questions in order to get intelligent answers.  
  • edited May 4
    It's not clear to me what @Ossie expects a place like the DMP forum to provide but I have found that the more you put into it the more you get out of it.  :)
  • Hello ...

    I appreciate the comments made and indeed have taken them on board, I especially find ‘MyArtsClub’s’ comments insightful and probably very true. I also appreciate the recommendation to look at other sites. I have been doing this for some time but my affinity with DMP where I first discovered oil painting led me to feel a bond which I found hard to break. I and believe now is the time to let this forum go. 
    I sincerely wish everybody well. 

    Ossie ... 

  • Hi @Ossie,

    All the best to you and I hope you find what you are looking for.
  • edited May 4
    @MyArtsClub on your point 5) and @Ossie your point that its become a back slapping exercise.

    While I understand your views on this I see it more as encouragement and praise which, particularly if someone is new to painting can be so helpful.
    You could, understandably argue that this isn't going to help them if they are being praised for something that you believe is not very good. But usually on here constructive criticism is given if asked for.

    Personally I believe that developing into the best critique that you can be for yourself and to your own work is best. This takes time to develop.

    Art is such a wondrous thing to be immersed in, its therapeutic value immeasurable and is there for anyone to enjoy and become involved if they wish.

    I presently get my best and most honest critiques from an artist with many years of experience, I wouldn't and don't expect the same from this or any other art forum.

    Of course I am pleased when people who have seen my work on here or social media and praised it, some are knowledgeable in art some are not.

    I know where  I want to head in terms of developing and thats down to me, not my expectancies of how others respond.

  • I do my best back-slapping here and for one good reason. The people deserve it.  
  • Maybe it is time for another challage @dencal
    who is up for it ????
  • CJDCJD -
    edited May 6
    Most of what is to be learned is in Mark's videos - colour mixing, setting up a studio, choosing good photos or setting up a still life, etc. If someone has a specific question about the DMP course then they can probably get a good answer here.

    It's pretty rare to find really great, high-level critique of art anywhere online, but for beginners and amateurs even the critique typical of this forum can be helpful. For something more you probably have to find a master artist you like and pay them, although this probably isn't worth it unless you've already mastered everything in the DMP course but find it's not enough to be able to paint like Jeremy Lipking or someone like that.

    Scott Waddell and Devin Cecil-Wishing have good instructional videos you can buy if you want to see how someone paints at a very high level (classically trained, etc.). I watched Carlo Russo's video recently but didn't find that one as helpful. Some of these artists don't use any tricks, they just put a lot of time into their work and are just damn good at coming up with nice compositions and color harmony and a couple other things.

    The point about boring subject matter is interesting. The paintings posted here are pretty typical of what people like to paint - flowers, landscapes, portraits, still lifes, a random egg on a table, etc. Also, if you think the art posted here is "weird" you really haven't seen very much!
  • I don't understand some of your points.. some artists here post endless post with many steps because painting is a long effort..I do spend months on my pieces and I like to share the struggle with other painters because only them can understand really the effort to do so.
    In Italy we say "andare a bottega" like the old masters did in.the past where they painted with their teacher for years.. You find this forum boring? I see only two discussions made by you.. and one of them is this post. Did you ever posted some of your paintings here?
    If you see my posts I shared everything, I read papers on Caravaggio and posted all the techniques here, and I invite you to find any other reference on the web with this level of details and where a reproduction is made step by step , and where someone paint in this style and they explain you the pigments or the number of glazing etc..if you can I am waiting because I couldn't find anything.
    And not talking about other members here for example like @dencal ..I didn't see any questions where she didn't shared her knowledge..
    Ok bye.
  • The problem with criticism/analysis are:

    1) Are people here up to the task.  I think one can be, but a lot of reticence is probably as well.

    2) I find on the net that people often ask questions that are extremely vague.  It is a huge waste of time to dive in only to find that their real question was something they only later got to, if at all.

    3) Coaching is really tough.  One can spot problems easily enough, but to know which ones actually need to be addressed in what order to get the student to the next level is a whole other thing.  If we all knew the answer to those kinds of questions we would all be progressing relatively rapidly to mastery.  While what really happens is people plateau and then quit.
  • Well Ossie wasn't the first and probably won't be the last. If we could all give the kind of critique  and coaching that  Ossie seeks we'd all have our own websites, galleries and onsite classes like Mark Carder. I honestly believe some former forum members have achieved that level and and I honestly believe current and future members are capable of doing it too. Ossie and others like him don't seem to appreciate the fun of watching novices and hobbyists grow and improve. I get such a big kick when I see that a forum member has been accepted to a juried competition or has her own gallery showing or a beginner gets his first sale. It's too bad that everyone can't find enough pleasure in a forum like this to want to keep coming back if only to read what's new.
  • Totally agree @BOB73, I enjoy coming on here to look at peoples paintings and share my own. I don’t expect any kind of critique and don’t feel qualified to give any but it’s still enjoyable :)
  • I think Ossie should start his OWN forum. That way I bet he’d attract the interesting , talented and informative artists he’s looking for. 🧐🤓

  • If you're looking for hard knuckle instruction, comments and critiques, you will find it on a now nearly defunct web site called Rational Painting . . .  It was a real learning center with a no-nonsense approach a couple of years ago, but the guys behind it tired of trying to educate the masses (so to speak).  However, the site is still up and you can browse the many sections of the forum and glean a ton of knowledge.  The site leans toward the Munsell system, so be prepared for stumbling over that.
  • Forum or against em


    Despite Ossie`s complaints about the forum, it was noticeable that he continued to visit the site for a little while after (though last visit was May 22nd), so he must have got something from it.

    I wouldn't be surprised if he still visits under a new name, looks like its easily done.

    Signing off
    Lieutenant Columbo

    Oh, one more thing...................
  • @MichaelD I think you're right. I still love Columbo.  I record him once  a week. That way I can fast-forward through the 45 minutes of commercials. 
  • I love Peter Falk as Columbo.  But my wife won’t watch the reruns more than 30 times.😀

  • I think when you said that it's so boring waiting for a painting to be completed on the forum that you showed a lot of narcissism. Give back to the forum and to other artists here and we all benefit. 
  • edited July 26
    You're right, @Richard_P. It's like @Ossie expects this place to be designed for his personal pleasure and edification. But he never contributes paintings or comments on other's work and expects only to see masterpieces. I don't get it. Maybe he was  right, too, when he said that "perhaps this forum is not for people like me".  But, as I said above, there is so much about DMP that makes it a fantastic resource for painters no matter what their level. I couldn't even have started and I don't know that I could keep painting without this place. And as @BOB73 said, there's a great deal of joy and pleasure in seeing others progress and, in whatever way we can, contributing to their progress just as others have contributed to ours. There's a feeling of camaraderie here that I've not found anywhere else   Ossie's criticism seems so off key..  :/
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