Paula O’Brien


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Tutorial videos

Digital painting is SO exciting, especially for plein air painting and life drawing because the iPad is just SO EASY to take along – anyplace! Personally, I ONLY use digital painting when I can’t use real paints in my studio, like when I’m away from home or out plein air painting BUT I’m certainly enjoying pushing it to the max.

Brushes Redux
In 2010, I began digital painting with my fingers with Brushes Redux on my old iPad. David Hockney uses this. Read more about life drawing with Brushes.

Adobe Sketch
In 2017, I moved up to iPad Pro and Adobe Sketch with much more to offer than Brushes. With basics mastered, I took it to weekly life drawing to push myself to learn it. Great textures to choose from like dry pastel, markers, watercolor, acrylics, oils. I use an inexpensive stylus and the Apple pencil. SUCH a wonderful portable artist toolkit!!! Read more Adobe Sketch.

Even more painterly effects like wet drips and patterns. Fantastic but overkill for beginners.

In early 2018 I spent 5 week studying Spanish and doing plein air painting in Guanajuato, Mexico. WOW! You can take an iPad anywhere and you certainly can’t do that with real paints. I was able to be very painterly, freely plein air painting in churches, streets – everywhere! The more you work with the digital painting and digital drawing apps, the more you progress, just like any skill.