Marcia Burtt

by Sarah Judson May 24, 2011

Award winning artist Marcia Burt has spend forty years painting in acrylics. What some people might consider limitations of the medium (especially when painting plein air), such as their quick drying time, she has turned into advantages. Since re-painting is so easy, she begins with a large, expressive image instead of a drawing. If something doesn't look right or if the details start to overwhelm the composition, she'll go back to the basic block-in by painting over the passage with a big brush. It's easy to adjust colors, shapes and values by painting over them since they are already dry. She softens edges and blends colors by using a dry brush technique, painting over the previous layer lightly with another color. Since acrylics tend toward the middle of the spectrum as they dry (darks becoming lighter, lights becoming darker) she will often start out by exaggerating the colors and values. "If I've been painting regularly, everything looks beautiful. That's the reward for spending hours intensely observing nature - you start seeing beauty everywhere." Her website includes many tips and articles about painting with acrylics. She also teaches workshops, and her instructional DVD is a valuable resource. Marcia is a founding member of two artist groups who raise money to protect open spaces and increase public awareness of environmental and conservation issues: The Oak Group and SCAPE. She currently has an exhibit on view through June 5 at the Easton Gallery in Santa Barbara.



Sarah Judson
Sarah Judson

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