The Pressure Scale by Dan Christian

Here is a video of the Painted Pressure Scale by artist Dan Christian. Dan establishes the majority of the gradation with short strokes via a bristle filbert, knocks down thick, distracting strokes with a series of very short (near stipple-like) strokes via a synth flat, and performs a quick “finishing” pass with a very soft blender.

@stuart129172 I am tagging you in this as I hope you will find it helpful with your careful analysis of the many variables of the scale exercises! :smiley:


Really cool - thanks for sharing it :slight_smile:

I’m curious about the canvas vs. sanded panel… do people do LoP exercises on canvas too? I thought it was pretty panel-focused, but I guess of course there’s no particular reason it needs to be, just that that’s how it’s all shown on the DVDs (I think? right?)

Hey Steve!

Just like students alternate between the two different sides of the Canson Mi-Tientes paper, artists will bounce back and forth (although not on a trict schedule) between primed Masonite panels and the more textured canvas panels.

FYI: Adding subtle variations in practice routine (emphasis on subtle!) has been demonstrated to significantly impact skill development:


I was just wondering why (in the video) Dan is not using a round synthetic brush for stippling and knocking down the bruhsstrokes instead of a flat one. (I use a rounded Putois).
Anyway, the finished gradation looks perfect.

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A great question Mark. I do not think that the flat offers any significant advantage over round here other than that of availability. The students here have a large flat issued as part of their initial toolset and I can only assume that Dan used it in this context for its large size (not necessarily its shape.)

Thanks Anthony. Sometimes the answer is obvious.

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Besides, do you think you can paint this gradiënt on a smooth panel (using this technique)?

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Absolutely! Just like our artists vary between the smoother and rougher sides of the Canson Mi-Tientes paper in the Drawing section of our program, our artists practice these painting exercises on both rough canvas boards as well as smooth acrylic-dispersion prepared panels.

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Thanks! I’’ ll try it out on the panel I am working on.

Awesome. Post any issues that you have here and we will certainly address them!!! Happy Painting!

Bravo! Dan is a stud! Helpful to see!

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This video was a life saver. I was struggling, and struggling to get something close. I now have completed 3 that are so much better. I paint along with Dan.

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So glad to hear it Ellen!

I am late on seeing this. Great! So you lightn the value by lighter pressure and lighten values with white subtlety . It took me years to understand this! No-one teaches this Tony! Just fabulouso!:smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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