Fearless Friday, Impasto

A large abstract floral painting has been on my to do list since last Spring when I was commissioned by a friend to paint Bloom



I also wanted to experiment with using gel mediums and decided to incorporate impasto

Impasto is a painting technique using very thick amounts of paint resulting in a 3 D texture

“According to Webster’s New World College Dictionary, the root noun of impasto is pasta, whose primary meaning in Italian is paste”  source


It originated as an oil painting technique but you can create the same effect with acrylic paint

Heavy body acrylic paint is pricey, but you can use a soft gel mixed with a little color to create a thick application for a lot less $$$



In the finished painting below you can see the dramatic texture differences



I added soft pink and coral to the soft gel and only stirred it a few times, so when applied, the colors mix on the canvas, producing random variations



I began by painting opposite corners with black gesso



I wanted these corners to be very dark for a dramatic contrast to the mostly white painting



I continued the underpainting with gray gesso

By using a contrasting color for the underpainting, the finished painting will have more depth and interest



After the underpainting was dry, I painted in the areas where I wanted the blooms and the pops of deep pink


Using a palette knife, I began laying in the background, using greens and just a touch of aqua

My favorite green formula is Cerulean blue & Cad yellow Med, depending on the ratio, you can range from a deep sap green to a delicious lime, and then add white for a warm light green



More white was added on the blooms using a large brush

For the bloom base I used a liquid acrylic, Devine Colors from Target come in a range of wonderful colors, in handy wide mouth jars for $5 each



I used 3 different palette knives to apply most of the paint, a small one, one with a silicone head, and a large spatula type

Invest in a good palette knife and take care of it, it is an amazing tool



Applying paint with a palette knife is fun, it’s kind of like icing a cake!



The paint can be applied in a variety of ways and thicknesses for different effects



I used the color tinted soft gel medium to finish the large blooms





Drip lines were added with small squirt bottles of white & gold High Flow Acrylic by Golden



This Summer Burst painting brings a burst of summer colors to our living room



Summer Burst is available at my Society6 Shop too


Break out of your comfort zone and try something new, and Be Fearless!

🎨   🎨   🎨   🎨   🎨   🎨

I will be joining these fabulous parties and blogs:

Rustic and RefinedBetween Naps on the PorchCelebrate and Decorate,

Coastal CharmCooking and Crafting with J&J,  The Scoop,   A Stroll Thru Life 

Lori’s Culinary Creations,   Moonlight and Mason Jars

Full Plate Thursday  Foodie Friday & Everything Else

Share it One More Time   Delicious Dishes Recipe Party     Foodie Friends Friday














22 Responses to “Fearless Friday, Impasto”
  1. Mary says:

    Love your creativity Jenna, you truly are fearless! I hope your art is selling like gangbusters at Society6 🙂

  2. Jenna, I love this! You are so talented and yes, fearless! Have a wonderful weekend!

  3. This is really gorgeous, Jenna. And your explanation/tutorial very detailed and informative which is exactly what I love when it comes to painting. I don’t know why I never thought to not fully mix the white and color when painting. It works so beautifully on your rose. (And actually, I was loving the look yesterday when making pink meringues. After adding the red color, it took awhile to mix in and I was thinking, “I have to remember this for next December — it will look like peppermints!)

    It’s a fabulous piece. Thanks for sharing painting AND technique and starting my morning off just right!

    • Thank you Jeanie, it’s kind of like the less is more theory! I love to let my paint mix on the canvas whether it’s watercolor or acrylic, it always adds interest…I can’t wait to see your peppermint meringues!

  4. Jodi says:

    Swooooonnn! I adore this one Jenna!!!!! Magnifico!

  5. Oh so many take home tips for me today Jenna! Green is one of those colors I never find I mix to my liking. I will try your Cerulean Blue + Cad Yellow Med recipe! I like seeing your use of the small squeeze bottle to get the squiggle lines. Do you rinse it out and reuse or have to throw it out after each use? Love the textured final product and the dark gesso background for drama in the lower third. Another FFF!

    Johanne Lamarche


    • Thanks Johanne, I use high flow acrylics from Golden for the drips, and also for loose lines that I add when the painting is on a flat surface so they won’t run. The paint comes in individual small bottles with a twist top spout, so there’s no clean up, very handy!

  6. Jenna, so pretty! I love the color and the texture. Happy weekend!

  7. Leslie Anne Tarabella says:

    Beautiful! It would also make a good cupcake design! Mmmm!

  8. Kim says:

    I love this one, too, Jenna. All your bloom paintings are wonderful! Thank you again for the giveaway. I’m enjoying my new pillow cover and will feature it soon on my blog. I want everyone to have the opportunity to get your gorgeous offerings at Society6! 🙂

  9. Julie says:

    This is such a beautiful painting Jenna!
    Thanks for sharing it at C&C with J&J.
    Enjoy the holiday weekend.

  10. Sandra Garth says:

    Your style is so unique and I knew as soon as I saw this that it was one of your incredible designs. Thank you for sharing with us this week at Celebrate Your Story, have a great week and a Happy Holiday.

Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] I love my newest painting, Summer Burst and wanted to see if I could make it […]

  2. […] I could hang Summer Burst in […]

  3. […] finish the flowers, I mixed color into Soft Gel to create an Impasto […]

  4. […] Summer Burst, acrylic […]

  5. […] Large abstract painting, Summer Burst tutorial available here […]

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