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  • Writer's pictureDeanna_ThriveArt

Quick Tips to Make Your Art FASTER

Making art is is long process. It can feel in the world of social media with time lapse art videos bombarding us that you are just making art too slowly. Whether you are drawing, painting, taking and editing photographs, working with fabric or any other media, these tips can be tweaked easily to help you gain more time and complete your beautiful work in less time. Although there is no way you can make art at 4X human speed, there are some tips you can incorporate to make the process a bit faster.


Use Different Brushes

It can be easy when you are fully caught up in the art making process to use the same brush for everything- believe me I have done this many times! But different sizes and shapes of brushes are there for a reason and can actually help us speed up our process. It is important to consider the shape and texture of your brush when you are creating. If you want straight edged lines and contours, make sure you use a square brush with a reasonable stiffness to make the sharp edges in no time. If you are painting a background use a large brush to cover the area in a fraction of the time. Conversely, if you are painting small details a smaller brush will allow you to be more precise and save time cleaning up edges at the end.

collection of brushes
Having a variety of brushes will help you make art faster

A round brush lends itself to more organic shapes such a leaves and flowers allowing your work to have more flow and energy. When using watercolour or creating long flowing lines, consider using a softer brush that can hold more paint and keep your lines smooth and confident. Using the right tool for the job will not only make your work look more professional, but save you valuable time when completing it.


Consider using Mixed Media

Mixed media is where you combine different types of art materials in one piece, layering or using them in separate sections. When completing certain areas, decide whether a mixed media approach would help you not only create a more unique piece, but also save you valuable time. Using collage for backgrounds can be a great way of adding texture and interest quickly instead of covering the area in paint.

girl portrait mixed media
Collage, Oil Pastel and Graphite Portrait. By using mixed media I could complete this piece faster.

Conversely small detailed areas can be incredibly challenging to complete with paint, even if you are using a small brush. Consider using another media such as pencil, fine liner or dip pen to complete these areas instead when adding details to your piece. Making your materials work harder will save you time and help to create your individual style.


Practice and Confidence

It is undeniable that you will simply get faster the more you practice your skills. You will gain confidence in how shapes and angles translate to the page. This will allows you to sketch and paint quicker as well as get those things correct the first or second time, rather than the fourth or fifth. It is one of those Catch-22 situations where you have to put the time in to make the time back in the future.

Ink and bleach trees black and white forest art
Ink and Bleach Beech Trees. By practicing my art I can learn when to call a piece complete and save time.

I would urge you to look back on some work you did months or even weeks ago and reflect on your whole process. Focusing not just the finished result, but the time that went into sketching, choosing colours and refining the piece, will allow you to see how much you have grown and ways you can save time in future work. When you practice art regularly you will instinctively know what needs tweaking and when to call it done before overworking the piece.


We will never be as fast as a time lapse video which has been edited to have all of the tweaks, mistakes and rearrangements taken out. Creating art is a process and you gain so much from going through that process as well as the satisfaction from the end result. I still find ways to make art faster to this day or become aware of things I am doing that are slowing me down unnecessarily.

Finally I would like to remind you that there is beauty in the slowness of the everyday. In a fast paced, perfect world having the stillness of just you and the creative process can be so peaceful.


If you found this post interesting and would like to know how to fill a sketchbook in a sustainable and enjoyable way check out this blog post:

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Don't forget to leave a comment about how you are going to use these tips in your next piece so we can support one another in our goals!

I hope you are having a wonderful day, and don’t forget, everything changes when you choose to Thrive! 

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