Monday, October 26, 2020

Real Plein Air Experience


I have made a new Youtube video of the accident during one of my plein air painting sessions on EPAT competition. A strong wind knocked my easel over and crash my painting into the dirt. I did not rescue the disaster immediately, but instead, I documented what was going on with my phone. I had put a footage on Instagram and got more than 7,000 views. Now I am back to my studio, so I v-logged this accident. You may view this at: and have a good laugh.

Sunday, October 25, 2020

"Water Lily Impression"


This is another plein air experimental piece. The location was at the "International Water Lily Garden" in San Angelo. The painting was relatively large (18" x 24"). My intention was concentrating on the color design and using as less as possible representational elements. I would not say the experiment was successful, but it was not a failure either. I did gain color freedom, but the harmony needs quite amount of work. I have learned.

Thursday, October 22, 2020

"Quillen's Ranch House" --- Sold


I had a bad crash when I did this painting. However, I have repaired it. So not problem, but have a big laugh. Now, the painting is no long categorized as "oil on board", but it is a "mixed media".

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

A window of Texas


I am experimenting this vertical composition. It is also my first time painting cactus. 

Sunday, October 18, 2020

"Coralina Ranch Castle"


The first day of the EPAT, we have stayed at this spectacular castle. I did this painting for the owner. We had a great day there.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

"Backyard Roses"

 Continuing painting plein air in my backyard. I really like this one. I did not work hard on colors this time, but I spent some time on drawing and edges. I must say I have not done enough plein air on flowers. I did most of my florals on my still life setups. I usually buy flowers from grocery stores. The leaves usually are in bad shapes. This one really gives me a good feeling. I want to paint more floral from gardens.

I am on my way to San Angelo, Texas to participate the En Plein Air Texas painting festival. This is my first in-person event since March. I am very excited. I will let you know how it goes.

Monday, October 12, 2020

Shed in the back yard


This is another plein air piece. The location was in our backyard. The time was about 2:00 pm. The painting was started a year ago. It was abandoned after it had barely a composition sketch. I did not know why I didn't complete the painting at the time. I worked on it a few more days recently and I may say it is finished. I would not say I really like it, but it did show some progress of my skills after I researched on color during this precious time of the Covid isolation. I become more sensitive about colors in the shadow. I like the color of siding of the shed in the shade. This one and my previous "Off the Grid" painting are two my most recent plein air works. I find I am slowing down significantly. None of these paintings was alla prima. I have been seen more and mix more colors. Although the resulted paintings have not shown significant difference from my previous plein air works, but some feelings are happening.  

Friday, October 9, 2020

Details of large paintings


Recently, I have been learning the skills of making videos. I have made another one today and just posted it on my Youtube channel. Please go to: to watch it. For a while I have been painting relatively large paintings. I know it is hard to show the effects of large paintings if I only post static painting images. So I made this video and I can zoom into the details of the paintings. Since the Covid 19 Pandemic, fewer people go to galleries to see the shows. Maybe this video can give you some impression of my gallery paintings. This can be an idea of doing a "virtual solo show" on the internet. Nowadays, Youtube is so popular, but I have just started to use it to promote my art. I don't know I will become those who are called as "Youtubers", but I am willing to test the water. So please comment on my videos and give me suggestions. I appreciate you help me to grow.

Monday, October 5, 2020

Plein Air "Off the Grid"


I painted plein air at my "off the grid" haven yesterday. I remembered I have talked about my DIY project of building off the grid before. I was inspired by Henry David Thoreau's "Walden" and did this project mainly in 2019. This year, I have added an attached bathroom to the main structure, and built decks in the front. Nine solar panels provide the power so I can turn on lights, run a refrigerator, and the most importantly, drive an AC to beat the super hot Texas summer. I use rainwater for shower and other cleaning, and propane gas for cooking and heating in the winter time. I enjoy very much when I stay there. Now, all of us are going through the Covid 19, and it becomes more significant to know how to live sustainably. 

The weather is perfect. When I was painting, all the details I went through during the construction came alive. It was a good moment. I realize that I can not be only a painter, I must know all the skills to survive. 

Saturday, October 3, 2020

Zoom demo is on Youtube now


Please watch the video at:

I did a painting demo live on Zoom today. It was problematic, and it might have caused some artists who has registered, but not able to watch. All of this was due to my lack of knowledge of using Zoom. The problem was that I have sent out the wrong invitation. I copied the invitation info and pasted to the email I sent out, and I did not know how to verify the correct meeting ID until the time the meeting started. I copied an different meeting invitation and sent it to you. Fortunately, my son Jonathan figured it out. and helped me to start the meeting with the ID I have sent. If you have missed the live demo, I sincerely apologize to you. We live in this so called "Information" age, but the fact is we are lack of more information. Just a few days ago, I knew nothing about Zoom. I jumped into the water without knowing how to swim. I am learning dangerously. I wish I could have prepared thoroughly to start to do things, but we don't have that kind of time. Life is too short, we have to take the risk. I am glad this live demo was not a complete failure. The result is better than I thought.

Now I have put the demo on Youtube (it is another deep water I need to swim through). Please go to the above link to watch. I hope this video helps you. For the people who have seen the demo live, you may watch the painting getting finished in this video.  

Monday, September 28, 2020

A message about my painting demo on Zoom


I made a quick video to talk about some issues I have been going through in preparing for the painting demo on Zoom this coming Saturday. Please watch it on Youtube: We all work hard to make the new life working. I have learned a lot just this a couple of days. Yesterday, I have sent more than one hundred emails one - by- one, because I did not know how to send a group email for all who have registered for my demo. I felt clumsy at the beginning, but eventually I will figure out, and things will get more smooth. Thanks to all of you for your support to my art and teaching. I will try my best to teach more often and more effectively.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

I will do a free zoom demo for you


I would like to do a free Zoom painting demo for you. The time will be on October 3 at noon CST. The demo will last about one hour. You will see me live, and I will show you my general painting approach. No painting experience is required for watching my demo. I am learning new ways to continue my art teaching. This demo will be an experiment for all of us to test out if Zoom will be a viable method for me to teaching virtually. If you are interested in attending this zoom demo, please register at: (or go to my website then click "Zoom Demo" tab). Since I have only 100 seats available, please sign up as early as you can. See you Saturday.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Once Upon a Time


I finished another painting. About a year ago, I attended the "En Plein Air Texas" competition in San Angelo Texas. I did a plein air sketch of this old truck. to show the feeling of the old time, I thought I would use a monochromatic approach. But the result was not ideal. I came back, and the painting went directly to the storage, started its own hibernation into the forgotten past, just like the old truck... Recently, I pull it out. Since I am in the mode of working on colors, I decided to paint on the top of the monochrome, I turned it into a true color painting. 

In order to adapt the new way of living in the isolation of the pandemic, I started to pay more attention to the Internet. I have been ignoring using Youtube for a long time, but now I want to develop my channel. After I posted my instructional video on using my "Painter's Guide" app, I am happy of seeing my subscribers increased from 55 to 118 in about a day.  Thank you all so much for your support. I felt deeply the connection between us. Now I am learning to make time lapse videos. I have documented when painting this old truck. Please go to: to watch my painting process (for Instagram users, please search: "Qiang Huang" on Youtube). I appreciate you subscribe my channel.

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

New Youtube: how to use my app


I uploaded a new instructional video on Youtube to demonstrate how to use my "Painter's Guide" app. Please go to: to watch it (for Instagram users, please search "Qiang Huang app" on Youtube). I hope all of you can benefit from this free tool to improve your painting quality. Having been teaching for so many year, I feel I have a mission to accomplish: I want to boost up the general capability of representation art creation. I will try all the ways to achieve this goal. Creating apps is one of them. Youtube will soon be another one. At this moment, I have very few videos on Youtube and only 55 people have subscribed my channel. From now on I will use this tool proactively to provide my painting tips and other educational information. I sincerely hope you can support my effort. Please please subscribe my channel. I am serious about art and teaching, and know well that there is too much junk in the world now. I will and am obligated to keep my channel clean. Let's work together, to survive, to grow, to excel, and eventually to make this world more beautiful. Thank you so much. 

Monday, September 21, 2020

A Podcast about my work


I chatted the art publisher  Eric Rhoads for about an hour last Tuesday. Now this conversation is on Plein Air Podcast. Please check it out: This podcast covers my recent research on color, how I started plein air painting, what I have learned from the master painter Richard Schmid, my teaching experiences, and some tips about painting. I hope my experience as an artist and teacher can be informative for you. I am going through a transition during this special time. We will go through all the difficulties, learn some new skill in life, and be ready for the next phase of our journey on this planet we call the Earth.

Thursday, September 17, 2020

"Gondolas in Venice" finished


I have finished this 36" x 36" large painting. On and off, it took me about two weeks. I have learned a lot, especially on color management on large paintings. Painting grays in the background was difficult. I don't want the paint look muddy there. It took me a few iterations to figure out. After this experience I have gained more confidence to paint large, without worrying the painting showing overworking or color getting dirty. I have gone through the transition from an alla prima painter to a true studio painter. I will summarize what I have learned and hope in the future I can share with you on how to paint large.

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

My demo for "Live with Eric Rhoads" is on Youtube

Last Sunday, I did a live stream interview and demo with Eric Rhoads, the Art publisher. Now the video is on Youtube, the link is: (or you can search "Live with Eric Rhoads 172" on Youtube. I know some of you may not register with Facebook so you could not watch live. Now it is ready for you. At the meantime, it is a learning experience for me to know how to do live stream from my studio. I plan to teach zoom classes soon. So this event helped me to iron out some of technique issues. It looks that I need to improve the sound quality a little and install a zoom lens with the webcam, or maybe multiple webcams. When I am ready to teach zoom classes, I will let you know. Now just download my videos from my website.

Since Eric doing a favor to give me more publicity, I will help him too. So please sign up "Realism Live" if you think it will benefit you. The link is: You will learn from the most advanced artists in this event. Thanks.

Friday, September 11, 2020

Livestream from my studio on Sept 13

I am very happy to be invited by Eric Rhoads to talk about my recent art activities. Our meeting will be live streamed online at 11:00 AM central time on September 13 (Sunday). This will be the first time I will live stream from my studio. If you are interested to see my studio and know what I have been doing lately, please visit: on Sunday. It will be a fun event. See you then.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

"Gondolas in Venice" Phase 3

Please be patient with me. This large painting will take a while to finish. For these a few days, I have been working on the figures. I don't want them to be detailed, but the drawing needs to be accurate, and the color needs to be interesting. This is what I got so far. I know some paintings take years to finish. I hope this one will not be that way. Well, I take it back. I started this one in 2017. Now it is 2020. At least I have not got stuck yet. Please wish me luck to have a smooth ride.

I hope you have checked the information of "Realism Live". I wish I could be a part of it, but I have a time conflict. If you have not checked the program, Here is the link: There so many superb artists will demo for this event. It is a great opportunity to learn from them.

Saturday, September 5, 2020

"Gondolas in Venice" Phase 2

If you want to paint a good landscape, 20% is from what you know, but 80% is from what you see. However, if you want to paint a figure better, 20% is from what you see, 80% is from what you know. That maybe the reason some good landscape painters never paint figures or portraits. If you want to be a good figurative painter, Serious study and training in art schools is crucial. Unfortunately only a few art schools nowadays offer this kind of study and training. I visited Florence Academy of Art before, and really wish I can get that kind of training. I did not graduate from any art school and I am not young anymore. I must think some way to expedite my figure skills. I have some new "app" ideas, and I will develop some tools to help mediocre figure painters to excel. I know some people use projectors, It can not solve the problem completely. Without a good "knowing", a normal 3 years old child still can judge if your figure is good or bad.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

"Gondolas in Venice" Phase 1

I am refurbishing a painting I did in 2017. I was stuck at the time, did not know how to finish. The painting was painterly and had some good parts, but there were something wrong with the color and the gesture of the main figure needed quite amount of work. It was a large one, 36" x 36". The correctness of the color relationship is crucial. I was not able to manage at the time. Now I am using my "Painter's Guide" app. I can mix color much more subtly and accurately. So color issue of large paintings will not be a problem any more.

Although my painting style is quite impressionistic, but I am always representational and realistic. If you are also a realistic painter, I recommend you attend an virtual event called "Realism Live" on October 21 - 24, 2020. The link is here (for Instagram users, please copy-n-paste: There are quite many excellent artists will share their tips. You will enjoy this great event.

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

"Painter's Guide" App Announcement

I am so happy to announce that our newly developed app: "Painter's Guide" is ready for you. "Painter's Guide" app is a comprehensive tool for artists, especially oil and acrylic painters. If you paint from photos, you will find this app will improve your painting significantly. It can change your photo to black-n-white so you see value easily. It has the "oilify" filter to simplify the color shapes and hide details. You can vary the photo size to small thumb nails or enlarge to get details. Just like the previous "Color Picker" app, "Painter's Guide" can single out colors from any spot of the photo and provide you quantitative color information, so you can see and match color accurately. It is quite straightforward to use this app, but soon I will make a Youtube video to demonstrate how to use it.

You may access the "Painter's Guide" app on my website for free, simply go to and click "Apps" tab, then press the "Painter's Guide" button. If you are curious what the numbers mean on the app, I highly recommend you take my online color course (on my website then click "Online Teaching"). We are working hard to find ways to improve your painting skills practically. We appreciate greatly your kind donation in helping us to further develop apps for artists. We will work together to heal our beautiful world. Thank you so much.

We are still working on Apple and Android versions of this app. We need to cross additional learning curves. Please be patient with us. Thanks.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

"Mayfield Water Lilies"

I have finished this large (24" x 24") painting. I concentrated on the realistic presentation of the water lily pads and flowers. It is totally different style from my previous large painting "ICU heroes". When should I do a realistic painting, and when an abstract one? I feel the control is not up to me, especially large paintings. I need quite a few days to paint one, so I just go with the flow. The painting evolves right in front of me, Just like the flowers. I don't think I "created" this painting, I felt like an gardener. My job simply is to provide the as good as possible conditions for the water lilies to grow and bloom. If the painting turns out a good one. I usually spend a long time in front of it to enjoy the beauty of the visual presentation.

Friday, August 28, 2020

"Lake Brownwood State Park 3"

I went to the same location where I did my first painting in the Lake Brownwood Park. I was not completely happy about the colors I used for my first painting. It was so dry that all the grass has turned into that yellowish dry grass color. What color I should use to paint the dry grass, and also the green bushes. It was so vibrant green. I decided to paint again. This is what I did. I think I did better this time.

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

"Lake Brownwood State Park 2"

My 2nd plein air painting is the Recreation Hall in the park. It is ideal place for painting workshops. Well, now there is nobody here. I enjoy painting buildings and I was not in a hurry. So I got something like this.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

"Lake Brownwood State Park1"

Over the weekend, our family camped at the Lake Brownwood State Park. I did 3 plein air paintings. This probably my very first plein air painting outside of my house since the pandemic started. I felt rusty, but I have gradually gained momentum. The park was so quiet. The entire camp site had only 3 sites occupied. We have enjoyed very much the beautiful tranquility.

Friday, August 21, 2020

"Mayfield Lilies" Phase 3

I have not finished it yet, but I will be out of my studio for a few days, so I feel I should update you the status. I enjoy painting water lilies. To make this kind of painting more interesting, I have been exploring the richness of the texture and color. This painting is 24" x 24". To me it is a large painting. So I want enrich the painting as much as I can. Not much on details, but the abstract beauty.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

"Water Lilies in Austin" Phase 1


Life goes on, painting goes on too. I started another painting yesterday. I loaded my ref photo with my app on an Android Pad (it is very cheap $85 from Walmart). We are still developing the app on Android devices. It is almost ready, but still need some improvements. Then we will get this app on Apple products. We have crossed many technical learning curves. At this moment, This app is on my website. You can access it for free. In addition, it will be helpful if you have taken my "color" courses. Please visit my website, then click "Apps" and "Online Teaching" tabs. Let's make progress together.

Sunday, August 16, 2020

"ICU Heroes"


I have finished the painting "ICU Heroes" I want to acknowledge Mr. Phillip Reese and "The Sacramento Bee" for the reference photograph. I kept the paint work rather rough presenting a feeling of movement. It must be very exhausted and stressful working in ICUs. Let us help them by not getting sick. Please take Covid 19 seriously: stay home as much as you can and showing you care by wearing masks.

Friday, August 14, 2020

"ICU Heroes" Phase 2

This is my second session on "ICU Heroes" I am using my "Color Picker" app (on my website) to identify my colors, and mainly using a palette knife to block in. I want to thank all the wonderful friends who commented on my previous post. We will go through this difficult time. I can not predict the future, but I know well that we should use the time we have to grow, to be a better artist, and a better person.