One of the most common questions I get asked is- do you teach dot painting? How did you start and how should I? So I decided to pen 10 tips for anyone wanting to get started!
My initiation into dot painting was through a friend, and once I found a few artists dotting on instagram, I literally went down a rabbit hole... with my eyes open wide in excitement and awe of all the beautiful creations these seemingly innocent tools could create.
However, I wasn't sure if I would be any good! So, I didn't want to invest in a lot of tools. So, I started with the obvious - tools around the house. Here are my Five tips on where you can start and find your voice in this art form.
1. "Start at home", sounds simple. But where should you look? I started with the ubiquitous ear buds, pens with dried nibs (for some reason, our house always has plenty.. especially close to where you would need a working one!) and barbeque sticks.
Think of any tool which has a rounded tip and try finding a variety of sizes to play with.
2. Experiment on paper. While most vidoes will show you how to paint a stone, I found painting on paper to be a great starting point, mainly because at some point all of us have used it as a medium and are familiar with the amount of pressure you would need to apply.
3. Talking of pressure, dot painting is a lot about two things - a. amount of paint on your medium and b. the amount of pressure you apply with that paint. Pay attention to these two aspects and experiment away, till you get a handle on the tools you are using. Try dipping the tool in paint before every dot, try making multiple dots with the paint topped up just once, try making patterns around a centre dot... all these will give you a sense of control over the art.
4. Use natural resources, when you have mastered paper. Pick up a couple of stones the next time you are out for a walk! Trust me, I made my friends pick up a few stones each at the beach, because I wanted to practise. :)
Pick up a few leaves- Foliage has such beautiful texture!
Or, just revamp your coffee mug or water bottle!
5. Practise. Practise. Practise.
I emphasize because what really made my work fine and intricate was a minimum of 1 dot painting a day. Sometimes it took me 10 mins, sometimes 2 hours. I would diligently draw a basic outline on paper or stone and then dot away.
Over time, I figured out how to make really tiny dots, even though swooshes (those curved designs around a dot, which look like a petal) are still my nemesis.
There, its that simple.
Try these out and eventually, you will know if this is something that brings you joy... that's when you can splurge on supplies.
Honestly though, while you can get dotting tools on Amazon, do consider buying them from a local business instead. It will definitely make someone's day!