How to capture the light with oils

Oil painting of a market

When figuring out how to capture the light with oils, there's a lot to consider. Light is something that always inspires painters – whether it’s the sun shining on the stones of a building or a flower in a vase catching a ray of sunshine. In fact, a dustbin in an interesting light could make a better artwork than a beautiful landscape in a dull light.

Depicting light with oils can be challenging, but it is always rewarding. It has more to do with tones than colours. Getting a correct relationship between all the different tones of the painting is what will make the light effect credible.

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Originally from Belgium, Valérie has lived in the UK for the past 11 years. She works mainly in oils and enjoys working plein air.
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