Northern Values.

The Great Northern Depot, featured in this painting, was originally built in 1906. In the late 90’s it went through multiple restaurants unsuccessfully, but now it houses the Great Northern Bicycle Co. The historic charm of this depot always has me returning.

old photo of gndI found this picture along with the historical facts here!

In college Don McCraven, my professor from MSUM, took us to paint watercolor on location. We ended up going to the Great Northern Depot and I had a great time painting that piece, I knew I had to do it again. This time around I decided to do it in acrylic.At the time of this painting I was very new at using acrylic. I had specialized in watercolor for so long that this paint made me feel like I was painting with frosting. And let me tell you, my cakes taste much better than they look. To say the least, it was daunting. I found not only do the colors mix differently but it was very difficult to paint straight lines. But I discovered that for very important structural lines, using masking tape helped alleviate the issue. I had a tough time with the sky of the painting. I learned to paint dark to light in acrylic, the opposite of my usual pattern with watercolor. Every time I tried to paint around the roof, I would mess it up. It was tough to make the colors flow. I finally remembered hearing about these paints called open acrylics by Golden.They take longer to dry, so I was able to slow down my painting. I used my masking tape trick to block the edges of the buildings and smoothed out the paint to my heart’s content.

Here is a video if you are interested in learning more on the paints.