Monday, December 30

Far-Away Places in 2014

Far-Away Places
Oil on Canvas Panel
8 x 8 in/20.3 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
Like many painters this time of year, I think about what the new year will bring.

For me, I hope it brings a new and better appreciation for painting. It's not that I have not appreciated it in the past, but I hope I take it more seriously. OK, a little more seriously anyway (fortunately I don't have to paint to make a living).

That takes away a lot of the pressure. But some pressure is good. Without pressure to produce or achieve, I don't take it seriously enough, and my work suffers for it.

During this last year I moved in a new direction, which is difficult to do. I decided to work with oil where previously all my effort had been for watercolor (for several years) and then back to acrylic.

But the way I want to paint currently, contemporary impressionism, seems to lend itself to oil--what with the softness and blending required with this style.

I also began painting smaller paintings. I think this will help me to learn what I need to know about this type of painting. We'll see. I'm hopeful that I will improve, and I tell myself that as long as I am satisfied, that is all that matters.

Today's image represents those far-away vistas we see and the future coming right at us.

Here's to a 2014 filled with wonderful paintings for you and me.

Sunday, December 22

For Painters, It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Winter Wonderland
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
20 x 16 in/50 x 40 cm
Copyright Byrne Smith 2015/
Painters aren't known for their shopping skills, even for art and painting supplies. I think I know what I need to purchase; that is, quality paints and supports and supplies. However, I also know that I am frugal--what painter isn't--and I'm always looking for ways to save a buck (or depending on where you live, make that a pound, yen, peso, euro, etc.).

This time of year is the best time to be purchasing supplies, either for yourself or for other painters.

If you haven't noticed, art supplies are on sale everywhere!

Your local art supply store is probably (over)stocked with everything a painter's heart and studio could desire. And if you're an online shopper, as I was last week, the big online stores, such as Blick, Cheap Joe's, Jerry's, and Utrecht all want your business very much. What's more, you can even get free shipping if you buy enough stuff. Can't beat that.

So if anyone is wondering what in the world to get you, tell them exactly what that perfect gift would be and don't forget gift cards.

It is the most wonderful time of year for painters.

Monday, December 16

A Tip on Painting Sunlight

A Sunny Day on the Potomoc
Oil on Canvas Panel
10 x 8 in/25.4 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
I mentioned a few blogs ago how much more energy I have for painting when it's sunny outside. I'm sure each painter is different, and maybe you get energized when it's rainy, foggy, windy, cold, etc., but for me it's the sunshine.

A few years back I read something about how to paint "sunlight" that stays with me when I'm working on landscapes or sea- or cityscapes--actually any outdoor motif. I believe it was in a book about Edward Hopper when he would say, now it's time to paint in the sunlight. What did he mean?

Since a painting is nothing more than a two-dimensional illusion, I think he meant that painting "sunlight" comes from using a rather high-key palette and from the contrast in values you use on objects in sunlight versus objects in shadow. Since sunlight equals brightness, even in hazy sunshine, a brighter palette appears warmer with more intense hues as seen in natural sunlight. Painting sunlight has to do with the contrasting value you choose for the object in sunlight versus the shadow(s) associated with the object.

Here's the tip: the greater the value change from light to dark, the brighter the sun will appear in your painting. So, at high noon on a sunny day, the shadow(s) will be their darkest as compared to either early morning or late afternoon. Note that in today's image, the white, fluffy cumulus clouds also add to the illusion.

Happy painting.

Monday, December 9

A Painting with Aerial Perspective

View from Monument Hill
Oil on Canvas Panel
9 x 12 in/22.9 x 30.5 cm
Copyright 2013
Here is my painting for this edition of the painting blog.

It was painted from my reference photo taken on an early spring day, and today the area is a popular historic state park. Although I did not have my paints and supplies with me that day, perhaps I will return someday to paint the surroundings in pure plein air

For anyone interested, a little history of Monument Hill: On September 18, 1848, the remains of Texans killed in several skirmishes to secure Texas' independence from Mexico were re-interred in a common tomb at the location now known as Monument Hill near La Grange, Texas.

The scene is an elevated bluff with panoramic views looking west toward the legendary Texas Hill Country, and is a great place for any painter to experience and paint aerial perspective, giving depth and atmospheric dimension to your land-, sea-, and cityscapes.

Monday, December 2

Learning with a Limited Palette

A View from The Getty
Oil on Canvas Panel
6 x 8 in/15.2 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
I am currently in the mode of painting relatively small landscapes--8 x 10 in/20.3 x 26 cm--or less on canvas panels using a limited palette.

I am trying to learn how to mix these limited colors so that I am able to make the correct value and hue for any landscape I want to paint.

What are those limited colors? French ultramarine, cad yellow light, permanent alizarin, yellow ochre, and titanium white.

It isn't easy as I'm sure you're well aware if you are a painter, too. For one, there are all those different greens in the landscape that must be made to look natural or you end up with a mess. It's no wonder that green is called the painter's horror color.

The earth-tone colors for the land and roads and hills and rocks and ground aren't much easier, but at least if you make a mistake, it doesn't stand out as much as the wrong green.

Then, of course, there are the skies and clouds. Although not as difficult as green, finding the correct blue for the sky can be daunting: cobalt vs. ultramarine vs. French ultramarine vs. some other blue.

Today's image has all three--the greens, the earth-tones, and the sky (as well as ocean) blues. As I've said before, I live in hope.

Monday, November 25

Painting the Weather

Gray Day in the Valley
Acrylic on Artist's Canvas
9 x 12 in/22.9 x 30.5 cm
Copyright 2013
I hope wherever you are, the weather matches your mood today, especially if you are painting.

Although I don't know if painters are more susceptible to the effect the weather has on our mood, I suspect that is so. I think that because we are probably more aware than others of light source and environment as we plan and create our work.

Capturing the effect of light and atmosphere is a key part of most representational paintings, not only landscapes but still lives as well. The light, or lack thereof, and the state of  the ambient atmosphere are almost as much a part of your painting as the composition and focal point.

The weather affects your own mood, probably more than you think. I seem to have more energy and inspiration when the sun is shining. On those days, I get to work more quickly and seem to paint my best. Fortunately, I live where the sun shines a fair amount of time.

But that doesn't mean I'm not able to paint when the weather is less than ideal. That was the case the day I worked on today's image. It was cold and rainy, much like it is today. To paint on gray, overcast days I have to get into the right frame of mind, and it affects the values I see and the colors I mix.

So, wherever you are and whatever weather you're experiencing, I hope it suits your painting today.

Monday, November 18

Painting Tip: Paint Naturally

South on Highland
Oil on Canvas Panel
8 x 8 in/20.3 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
Today's blog is to give you a tip I attempt to practice, not always successfully, that is, to paint naturally.

"Paint naturally? What do you mean?" you ask. I mean you must allow yourself to be yourself and let the way you paint come naturally to you. That's not easy.

That means you must try not to paint the way anyone else paints. It's one thing to watch and learn how artists paint through workshops or by DVD or even private lessons or by just looking at another's paintings. Emulation is one thing.

Slavishly copying the color palette or materials or the routines or how he/she holds an arm/wrist/hand or makes a brushstroke or sits or stands, etc. will not make your paintings (much) better. Nor will that allow you to express your natural style.

I agree with the publisher of one of the art magazines who recently noted the sameness he sees in painting as he travels around to events.

If we're all trying to paint the same way, oh my, what a boring, boring outcome. Paint the way that's natural for you--the motion you're comfortable with, the colors you love, and let your application and brushstrokes look the way you paint--naturally.

Then you will be expressing your natural style.

Tuesday, November 12

Figuring Out Painting

The Palm at Balboa Park
Oil on Canvas Panel
6 x 6 in/15.2 x 15.2 cm
I'm not sure we are supposed to figure out what painting is really all about. I certainly haven't figured it out, either as one who paints paintings or one who views paintings.

I think I know what kind of paintings I like and like to view. I think I know how I want to paint.

But as for figuring it out, not as yet; but I believe figuring it out is more important than the end result itself (it's the getting not the having).

I have figured out that improvement is part of it, at least for me. When and if I see improvement, I am motivated to paint more and better.

Improving, or thinking you have improved even if you're the only one, is part of figuring it out.

As for the rest of painting, well, I haven't figure that out yet.

Monday, November 4

More Time Painting...

Courtyard and Tower
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
8 x 8 in/20.3 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
Today I will begin to paint more. I will spend more time with my paints and brushes and supports actually painting. I will spend more hours in a day painting with the intent of incrementally increasing the number of hours.

I will still read and research art and artist's techniques including looking at favorite painter's paintings online. I will still read art books that will enhance my skills. I will still attend art galleries and art museums to see beautiful paintings. I will still go to my local art supply stores.

In short, I will spend more time painting and improving my painting, but I will spend less time:

- On painters' blogs

- On painters' YouTube videos

- On various Art and Artist Magazines and Online Art sites in business for themselves

- On social media

I'll post my paintings on OrbisPlanis, but I will spend more time actually painting.

Monday, October 28

Painting in Solitude

Standing Alone
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
6 x 8 in/15.2 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
I know we humans are (supposed to be) social creatures.

I'm not convinced that's true for us painters or at least not for painters who commune with their paintings more than with other painters. I would rather work in solitude for hours on and with one of my paintings rather than spend that time socializing (with painters).

That doesn't mean I don't want to learn from painters I admire, I do. I choose to learn from them by observing their work and methods in books or online or even at a gallery or museum exhibition (definitely not at the reception, though).

Workshops have a place, I'm sure, and providing them may be an economic necessity for some. But it's basically a group activity in which you're expected to participate, that is, be social. No, I don't think so.

I suppose today's image in some way represents my feelings on the subject.

Tuesday, October 22

Capture Viewers' Interest with Contrast

Behind Couthouse Square
Acrylic on Canvas panel
6 x 8 in/15.2 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
I did not paint today's image en plein air, which would have been nice, I suppose, except that I would have been painting on a cold, windy afternoon on a busy street with traffic whizzing behind me.

For me to paint en plein air, it has to be a near-perfect outdoor environment, which is rarely the case. That means moderate temperatures, comfortable humidity levels, preferably sunny, and no bugs. As I said, rarely the case, but I live in hope.

But I digress. I painted this from a pretty good reference photo I took, which allowed me the artistic license to make a few changes.

I edited several items from the scene, such as a scrawny, misshapen tree that looked as if it were dead and didn't add a thing to the motif, in addition to a trash bin in the foreground.

I also added greater contrast of value and color than appeared in the photo in order liven up the buildings, which are the stars of this painting. I darkened the areas in shadow and lightened the sun-lit sides of the buildings.

To capture viewers' interest, nothing draws you into a painting and keeps your interest more than contrast in my opinion. That change in value and color is why people keep looking.

Notice how successful painters use contrast in their work. Then use it wisely, sparingly, and in just the right places in your own paintings.

Tuesday, October 15

Perseverance in Painting

Somewhere in Spain
Acrylic on Stretched Canvas
18 x 24 in/45.7 x 61 cm
Copyright 2013
My last blog, Why Paint a Study?, discussed why a "study" may be a good tool for some painters. Today's image is my finished painting of Somewhere in Spain, painted from the study.

But today, I'm blogging about the need for perseverance in painting. By that I mean, the need to persevere--that is, keep going--as a painter on your paintings.

Because the act of painting is, generally, done in solitude, it's easy to get discouraged. What you're working on isn't developing the way you envisioned it, which I will say happens to me on just about every painting I do.

Just yesterday, I was half-way through a painting when I could see it wasn't going to work no matter what I did. So, before the paint dried--which is extremely fast with acrylic--I sprayed water on the canvas and wiped off as much paint as possible back to a toned canvas. Today I will start anew.

Without perseverance, I would have given up painting years ago. Although this sounds a bit dramatic, like the phoenix, painters must rise from the ashes of their work and keep going until they are satisfied.

Tuesday, October 8

Why Paint a "Study?"

Study for Somewhere in Spain
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
6 x 6 in/15.2 x 15.2 cm
Copyright 2013 
I recently blogged about how difficult it can be for painters to choose the motif for their next painting.

The difficulty comes, in part, because of fear of failure or lack of creative confidence, not to mention the complete waste of time and material if the painting is unsuccessful, at least in the eye of the painter.

What to do?

Although I don't usually do this, I have found if you, the painter, are unsure about the subject matter and how it may turn out, then consider making a "study" before actually committing to a painting. That is, practice painting your motif first.

There is a long history of artists doing studies going all the way back to da Vinci. It's almost a prerequisite for many painters who don't leave home without their sketchbook and pencils or watercolors.

Anyway, I was going through the selection process a few weeks ago, poring over numerous photos that caught my eye. Becoming indecisive and somewhat dejected, I decided to paint a small study of the subject I was considering.

I'm glad I did, and it's today's image. I liked it so much that I painted it again on a larger canvas that I'll show you next week.

Tuesday, October 1

Why You Should Paint Alla Prima

On the Rocks
Acrylic on Stretched Canvas
18 x 24 in/45.7 x 61 cm
Copyright 2013
Ever have one of those Mondays when you feel as if you must paint right now, right away and alla prima?

I had one of those yesterday. It may be part of the way painters work, that is, with all that pent up painting energy.

Anyway, I was having trouble getting started. I would look over at my painting area--at my brushes, and paints, and supports, and whatever else was sitting around over there. I was having trouble with my inertia, which I've blogged about previously, it being Monday and all.

And then. I thought of my acrylic painting from a couple of years ago that I saw again over the weekend when I re-organized the closet where I store my completed works.

Most painters want to improve. I am no different. I looked at that painting and thought, I can do better than that.

And so yesterday, in less than two hours, I reworked every brushstroke in that painting with a lighter, higher-key palette and a looser style, in addition to simplifying the motif, all of which you can do relatively easily in acrylic.

I find I paint more freely and more creatively and more openly when I just let loose, so to speak, and go for it. You may discover that, too.

I present On the Rocks.

Tuesday, September 24

Simply Painting/Painting Simply

Two Figs & a Strawberry
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
6 x 8 in/15.2 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
Although Fall/Autumn has officially arrived here in the northern hemisphere, I wanted to post my painting from earlier this Summer when everything was blooming and bearing fruit.

At that time, I was working on several small still lives in both acrylic and in oil; this one in acrylic: Two Figs & a Strawberry.

The point I'm making is that the subject of a painting does not have to be an elaborate set-up or some breath-taking natural phenomenon, such as a canyon or waterfall. It can be as simple as two figs and a strawberry. The figs came from my backyard, and the strawberry from the local grocery produce department.

The other aspect of simplicity is how you apply paint to the canvas. I was just reading about the techniques of John Singer Sargent, and how he mastered the economy of form and brushstroke. He knew how and where and in what value and color to precisely place each brushstroke. He placed each one deliberately, nothing more.

I will make every effort to employ his method in my future paintings.

Tuesday, September 17

A View in Florence

A View in Florence
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
6 x 8 in/15.2 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
Today's image is a small acrylic painted from a photo gifted to me by an artist friend. She had recently visited Italy and returned with dozens and dozens of photos, many of which will make beautiful paintings of Italian land-, sea-, and cityscapes. Although not my original composed photo, I am so glad she allowed me to paint from this.

Some painters and/or art leagues frown upon using another's artistic vision (photo) as a motif, as if it were somehow immoral.

The act of rendering a painting is difficult enough--the inspiration, the imagination, the execution, not to mention the angst many painters feel in making that first brushstroke--without invoking some provincial code of what is or isn't acceptable.

Please. To those I would say, life is too short, and there should be no place in painting for such pettiness.

Tuesday, September 10

No. 1 Rule for Selecting the Best Motif

Kinston Ave., Culver City
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
8 x 8 in/20.3 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
Here's a California street scene I recently painted. A simple motif, it was a hazy morning, and I liked the atmospheric view of the Baldwin Hills in the background.

Selecting a great motif, or even a good one, is about the most important thing a painter can do, other than the actual technique and talent in laying down the paint.

I often have trouble selecting a motif that I think (and hope) will make good painting. I'm guessing most painters have the same kind of trouble.

What makes a good motif? The cliche of art being in the eye of the beholder holds true. What many would agree is a great motif may be frowned upon by other painters with just as much of an artistic eye as you.

So, my no. 1 rule for selecting the best motif is that it first pleases you, the painter. You must have some level of excitement about spending your time re-creating the illusion; otherwise, you will quickly become disenchanted. You will not give it your best, and you may even give up.

Of course, a good composition, color palette, and your ability to paint go a long way, too.

Tuesday, September 3

Plein Air Painter's Paradise

On Santa Monica Bay
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
8 x 8 in/20.3 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
I'm back after a week spent in West LA. It was warmer than usual in Southern California but still very pleasant and, as always, sunny. If you don't live around or have never experienced a sunny climate, too bad.

Each and every day starts the same way--with golden rays of sun. And it lasts all day. No clouds or almost no clouds allows for the most brilliant light and color. As I've said before, there are only a few places on the planet with that kind of light that plays off the mountains and distances and allows for hazy, atmospheric perspectives.

Of course, there is occasional rain, but the sunlight is quite extraordinary. I must say, it's a plein air painter's paradise.

Today's image is actually a painting that I painted a second time on a smaller scale just because I like the view of Santa Monica Bay from Venice Beach. I hope you like it, too.

Wednesday, August 21

"Not Another Bluebonnet Painting."

Another Bluebonnet Painting
crylic on Canvas Panel
6 x 8 in/15.2 x 20.3 cm
Copyright  2013
This week I decided to paint something I said I wasn't going to do--another bluebonnet painting. If you live in Texas, you probably just cringed.  If you don't, then you don't get it.

Bluebonnets are the cliche of cliches of paintings and painters in Texas. Why, I don't know, other than they are ubiquitous in the springtime, the paintings I'm talking about, as well as the bluebonnets themselves. Every painter of any genre in this state has felt the compulsion to try it at least once.

I'm sure the contemporary and cool artists are rolling their eyes, assuming they're even reading this. But for us representational impressionists, it's a hard habit to break.

Anyway, here in the depths of late summer, I had to paint one, sort of an homage to spring. I hope you appreciate my candor.

Wednesday, August 14

Paint a Small Still Life

I've been painting in the studio this week.

Although plein air painting seems to be an appealing way for painters to capture their surroundings, the reality is that when the temperature is more than 100 degrees F for a good part of the day, it's just too hot to paint outdoors.

You can't concentrate on anything at all, and it's not safe. Even in the shade.

So, as I said, I painted inside this week. But rather than painting from a reference photo, I decided to paint a very simple still life with two plums I had on hand.

I used alizarin crimson and cad red light for the plums against a backdrop of complementary violet and yellow.

It said summertime to me. I hope you like it.

Wednesday, August 7

The Look of Oil with Acrylics & A New Look for OrbisPlanis

Laguna Street
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
5 x 7 in/13 x 18 cm
Copyright 2013
You may have noticed a new look for OrbisPlanis. I updated to one of Blogger's newer templates. After five years, it was time for a new look and because it better supports more of the applications and functionality available on Google, such as Google+. Or so I was led to believe. I'm trying this one out, although the old template is history, as you cannot go back to it. You may see a few more tweaks in the coming days as I discover new gizmos. Anyway, I hope you like it. My goal was to keep it as simple and easy-to-read as possible.

Today's image is a small acrylic I completed last week. It's from my photo taken in Santa Barbara of the view across the street from the Old Mission. I also have lots of photos of the mission, but for some reason, I thought this view across the street of several old Spanish-style homes was a better motif.

I am using acrylic as loosly and impressionistically as I am capable of painting. I'm on a quest to see how closely I am able to achieve the look of an oil painting with acrylic. Hope you like it. What do you think?

Friday, August 2

Paint a Beach Scene to Cool Off

Beach Day
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
8 x 8 in/20.3 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
The dog days of August are upon us in North America, and I thought a beach scene would be an appropriate way to celebrate the season.

Here's a small acrylic I did recently from a reference photo on a trip to the beaches of Santa Monica, California, USA. These are some of the best beaches in the country, if not the world, especially if you like the cold Pacific waters this or any time of year.

Mixing the correct blues for the water and for those hazy skies over Los Angeles was the painting challenge. The same can be said for mixing believable colors of the sand, not to mention the challenge of painting waves breaking on the shore which, if you paint much water, you already know.

I hope you like it and that it inspires you to paint one, too.

Monday, July 29

Let Your Painting Rest for a While

Bluebonnet Field
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
12 x 12 in/30.5 x 30.5 cm
Copyright 2013
Every now and then you may want to look through your completed paintings to see if there is at least one that could be improved. As you know, when you work at a painting and are really concentrating on making it the best you can for hours or days, you are likely to lose your focus if not your objectivity.

When it's completed, or you think it is, it's helpful to let it sit for a period of time before you look at it again. During that time your mind and brain will have moved on to other works, and you'll be able to see your painting in a new light, figuratively and literally.

That's what I did with today's image. I originally completed it last Spring, and although I thought I had done a pretty good job, when I looked at it a few weeks ago--I could see it needed work. So, I make several additions, such as more foliage in the foreground, and corrections, such as softening edges everywhere. It was relatively easy to do in acrylic, and I think now it's ready for its debut. I know you didn't see it before, but what do you think?

Thursday, July 25

Paint an Urban Scene

Buda + Pest
Acrylic on Hardboard
18 x 24 in/46 x 61 cm
Copyright 2012

Here's an acrylic I completed last week from a personal family photo. Quite the panoramic view, it was fun to figure out how much detail to include in a scene with so much going on. I like the mix of colors urban landscapes provide the painter.

Painting cityscapes is a challenge for many painters. But---a painting challenge is how we learn. That's why we pick up the palette and brush the next day.

Paint. Paint. Paint

Thursday, July 18

An Inspirational Place

Morning Seat
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
6 x 6 in/ 15.2 x 15.2 cm
Copyright 2013

Here's a small painting from a reference photo taken on a Spring morning. It's on the grounds surrounding the Rothko Chapel in the leafy museum district of Houston. The chapel and, of course, Rothko's paintings are contemplative and inspirational, and I wanted to capture some of that. If you haven't been there, I hope you get the chance to visit someday.

Thursday, July 11

5 Years of Art Blogging! Happy Birthday OrbisPlanis

This week we're celebrating 5 years of blogging about art, painting, and painters at OrbisPlanis. I hope you have enjoyed all the information as well as my own art all these years.

What started out as a blog about re-newing one's interest in art (e.g. A New Art Blog on How to Renew Your Art Skills) turned into a blog with information about painting (e.g. Mixing Believable Greens) and painters (e.g. What Was Claude Monet's Color Palette?) and more recently A Painter's Blog about my own journey through watercolor, oil, and acrylic (e.g. Experiment With Painting This Summer).

Happy Birthday, OrbisPlanis, Happy Birthday To You!.

Saturday, July 6

Cool Thoughts in Oil

Cool Day
Oil on Canvas Panel
5 x 7 in/12.7 x 17.8 cm
Copyright 2013
I painted a little oil painting recently to help me keep cool on a very warm summer holiday weekend in the US.

The scene is a line of trees on a cool, overcast day with a hint of an impending rain shower.

It makes me think I feel cooler anyway, and I wanted to share it with my readers. I hope you feel cooler, too.

Thursday, June 27

The Silver Lining of Acrylics

Stopping By
Acrylic on Canvas Panel
8 x 8 in/20.3 x 20.3 cm
Copyright 2013
I understand why some painters complain about acrylic paint.

Acrylic dries too fast. Acrylic mediums and gels can be tricky to use properly. Acrylic is hard to blend.

But, for every complaint there is a silver lining.

You can paint as quickly as you want and make corrections almost immediately. It dries fast because it's water-based, which means it's easy to clean brushes and hands, and there's no odor.

The use of mediums allow you to paint as if you're using oil, allowing additional time to move the paint around and to provide a gloss, satin, or matte finish. Try that with plain oil.

OK, they are more difficult to blend but only relative to blending oil really. This makes one spend time to learn the best paint consistency and how to better paint lost-and-found edges, which most painters should be doing anyway.

Today's image is a little acrylic I finished this week. Not bad, I think.

If you haven't tried acrylics in a while, you will be surprised at how much fun they are to paint with.