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Vertex Week: paint a plein air biplane with James Gurney

Paint a plein air biplane with James Gurney

New York Times best-selling author and illustrator James Gurney pitches his easel at a local airport to paint a biplane. James Gurney is the creator of the popular Dinotopia book and TV series, as well as the author of Imaginative Realism: How to Paint What Doesn't Exist and Color and Light: A Guide for the Realist Painter – two of the best art training books released.

For Vertex Week 2022, Gurney shares his advice for painting from real life and offers tips and techniques for capturing life as it happens in your watercolour sketches. A lover of fantasy and history Gurney also takes time out to share why research matters as he looks back on aviation art of the past to see how this can affect sci-fi and fantasy illustration today.

Graffiti artist Ekundayo who ventures into the jungle of Hawaii to paint a portrait

If you enjoyed Gurney's tutorial then you really need to watch Cynthia Sheppard's advice for painting from life and how to paint strong shadows in your portraits. We also have a fascinating video from graffiti artist Ekundayo who ventures into the jungle of Hawaii to paint a graffiti portrait from imagination.

If you want to get started in traditional art and follow in the footsteps of Gurney, then take a look at our guide to the best art easels for painting, as well as further advice: art techniques for drawing and painting and the best YouTube art channels.

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Ian Dean is Editor, Digital Arts & Design at Creative Bloq. Ian is the former editor of many leading magazines, including digital art focused ImagineFX and 3D World and leading video game title Official PlayStation Magazine. Ian launched the magazine X360 in 2005 and has relaunched many others. In his early career Ian wrote for music and film magazines, including Uncut, SFX, and assisted on The Idler. With over 25 years' experience in both print and online journalism, Ian has worked on many leading video game and digital art brands. With a passion for video games and art, Ian combines his loves to bring the latest news on NFTs, video game art and tech, and more to Creative Bloq. In his spare time he doodles in Corel Painter, ArtRage, and Rebelle while finding time to play Xbox and PS5.