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Howdy all, from Long Beach, CA, USA

I am very new to the practicing art world. I'm fortunate if I can draw a dot. Learning all that I can online. Here is one of my first attempts on canvas (incomplete because I am stuck). Feeling really discouraged right about now.....please help.


  • edited November 2020
    This is a good for a beginning! Have you considered looking at Mark Carder's free videos at, these will give you many answers in support.
  • Welcome to the forum & enjoy!
  • Yes, I do watch his videos. I have limited equiptment and budget. I do have Geneva paints (Complete set) plus Canvas Stain. Never had an art lesson in my life (60 years old). I just feel a little defeated. Just started painting Oct. 2020

    I thank you for your reply.

    P.S. I think that I am out of my league for the artist in this forum.
  • Many of us here began quite similar as you, until we tried Mark's way and committed to giving it a good chance. Before you know it, progression became faster and greater. I was dead, lost, a wreck when I first came here 4 years ago, and I knew nothing about oil painting but listening to Mark & watching his videos & practicing, and finally participating here brought me back to life again, with hope. I now firmly enjoy painting in realism and with oil paint. 

  • Please don't be discouraged.  Everyone has to start somewhere.  Just think about it.  Your cup looks a lot like the setup.  Yes, it needs improvement.  But just because your first effort isn't a Rembrandt is no reason to quit before you've barely started.  Painting can be so beneficial to your state of mind,  keep on working at it and you will soon see great improvement.  If you want someone to point out areas that need help, you will need to take a photo from the same angle you are painting from.  Just a hint.  Oh,yes, welcome to the forum.
  • Azeem welcome to the forum.  You will find lots of helpful artists here.  Do not be discouraged. You will find your way.  Marks videos will give you the basics. 
    I suggest using a color checker and focus on matching the value.  Don’t worry about form, edge etc just get used to matching the value.  That is the key.  All the other stuff you will work on, as we all do, for the rest of your life.
  • AzeemAzeem -
    edited November 2020
    Thank you all. To be clear, after viewing serveral Artist for online instructions I have selected Mark's method of oil painting for me. It makes logical sense for me. However, I just did review STEP 1 and come to realize that I chose a diffical subject for my skill level. I may stop here and choose Glass as a subjuct, just as Mark says, which I thought would be too difficult.

    P.S. I have no plans to quit. The feeling of discouragement does come on stronge, very humbling.

    Thanks again.
  • hi and welcome @Azeem! so many of us here didn't have a formal training or no training at all, it doesn't really matter :) 
  • edited November 2020
    You're a very good beginner already! You realized that you may have chosen a too difficult subject at first. Many of us don't get that one without help. For me I had to relearn just what simple means, in oil painting. For my first, I chose a metal cup in a very simple still life set up, just me.
     Also on this sense of discouragement, many of us here come to know this as "the artist's curse" as Mark has named it so. Be careful of it and win against it.
    Looking forward!

  • @Azeem, welcome to the forum. Like you I started painting in my sixties. I became very discouraged and was about to throw in the towel when I discovered DMP. What I can tell you is that, if you follow Mark's teaching closely, things get better very quickly. You've made a good start on this painting. But I agree you have chosen a difficult subject with the jug. But hang in there.  :)
  • Aloha its a good start & welcome - are you standing and painting down or are you seated ? - do you have a proportional divider this will help get the initial measurements down, move the easel in front of the set up rather than at the back and sit relaxed (or stand )  at a decent distance for sight of line  - follow Marks set up videos,...and above all keep going it will be worth it
  • AzeemAzeem -
    edited November 2020
    Thank you all for your support and kind words of encouragement. This helped a lot. Your words have not fallen on deaf ears and will not go in vein. I decided to slow down, go back to Mark Carder's suggested fundamentles and start with 3 clear glass subjects. Once I have improved on my skill level I will go back and make any adjestments necessary to complete the work. I am working without a proportional divider, due to limited budget, so I use a ruler. I can hardly wait to show you all my slow progress.

    I should have payed more attention in kindgarten but I was too busy trying to stay alive.
    Thank you all. 
  • Welcome to the forum, I'm looking forward to seeing your paintings!
  • Keep going mate. You’re only a month or two into your journey and you’ve got a long journey left. You might not appreciate what you’ve done so far but in my opinion you’ve done well. You’ve produced a painting! An it looks complete! Don’t get bogged down trying to tweet this till it’s perfect, just move on to the next painting. You’ll be able to pump out 3 or 4 more in the time it’ll take you to tweak and refine this one and what’s more you’ll learn heaps more creating new ones. 
    Do that then maybe in another month or 2 come back to it and begin to paint on top and fix your ‘mistakes’ then. 
    The pursuit of perfection or simply the pursuit of ‘getting it right’ is paralysing. Just have fun and paint as much as you can. Paint on every type of surface too, it doesn’t always have to be on expensive canvases.
    ‘good luck buddy!😀😬👍
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