Karen Ilari
  • Female
  • Portland, OR
  • United States
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Karen Ilari's Discussions

New Challenge?

Started this discussion. Last reply by Mark S Ward Feb 19. 5 Replies

Well it's been a while!!! What do you guys think? Should we do a new challenge?What ideas do you have?There has been one vote for a still life challenge. My old age is creeping in and I can't…Continue

A new Facebook page for Sharing!

Started this discussion. Last reply by Wenda Spooner Oct 5, 2016. 1 Reply

Just wanted to let you know I've started a new Facebook page for anyone who considers themselves my student! Whether you have taken classes, watched videos, or are thinking about it :)It's another…Continue

Tags: facebook

Having trouble accessing the website?

Started this discussion. Last reply by Charles Eisener Sep 28, 2016. 1 Reply

Just wanted to let you know that there have been some issues lately with being able to access the website.The site runs on a platform hosted by Ning.com - it seems they are currently being purchased…Continue

Daily Painting Challenge!

Started this discussion. Last reply by Karen Ilari Oct 1, 2016. 22 Replies

Join me in this fun, ongoing challenge!Daily Quick Study Paintings!Lately I've been on a quest to loosen up, which I've heard from a number of you as well! I find when I do a painting, the longer I…Continue

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Karen Ilari's Page

Latest Activity

Karen Ilari replied to Brad Powell's discussion Garden Arbor
"haha, no worries. It's all fun, right?"
23 hours ago
Karen Ilari posted a photo

Spring Lane w/Karen Ilari

My version of Spring Lane courtesy Karen's tutorial. Thanks!
23 hours ago
Karen Ilari commented on Kathryn Hardsog's photo

Spring Lane w/Karen Ilari

"Nice job Kathryn! lovely color :) I'll add it to our album of Spring Lane paintings!"
23 hours ago
Karen Ilari posted a photo

The Red Tree

From Karen's instructional video. Acyrlic on canvas 16x12in
23 hours ago
Karen Ilari commented on Ian Greig's photo

The Red Tree

"Nice job Ian! I'll add it to our album of Red Tree paintings!"
Karen Ilari commented on Russ Hager's photo

elijah on the mountain

"Welcome Russ! Nice first painting! Keep up the good work. Be sure to check out the videos for some tips and techniques!"
Karen Ilari replied to Brad Powell's discussion Garden Arbor
"Wow! Nice Brad! I'm really seeing the sunlight now! And the greens are reading as more natural as well. A lovely spot indeed. Thanks so much for the update, it's really fun for me to see the changes :) Great job!"
Karen Ilari replied to Marion's discussion Painting kids on beach...do you pencil figures in first?
"Hi Marion! This is where acrylics is especially forgiving. As Charles mentioned you can "block in" your large areas first, no detail, just accurate values and ballpark colors. It's important to get those values right first. Then I…"
Karen Ilari replied to Marion's discussion Mountanin Range...
Karen Ilari replied to Mary's discussion Critiques Appreciated for learning
"Nice! I think the changes made a big difference! Especially the softer trees in the mid ground. Well done Mary!"
Karen Ilari replied to Mark S Ward's discussion Study of water meets rocks
"Really nice Mark! I love painting waves, you can really get lost in all the little patterns. I think you've done a great job with this! Your water has a lot of movement and interest. There is nice variation in color, size and texture in your…"
Karen Ilari replied to Corri Schmidt's discussion Snow on the San Miguel at Dawn
"Hi Corri! Sorry I didn't get back to you earlier, I wanted to take some time to manipulate the photos this week and I just had a hard time getting to my computer! I love this scene and what you have done with it! I, too would like to try a…"
Karen Ilari replied to Marion's discussion Am I nearly done?
"Hi Marion! So happy to see an update on this one! Your other comment posted just fine too! Here is a link to the original discussion in case anyone wants to check out the…"
Mark S Ward replied to Karen Ilari's discussion New Challenge?
"How fun! Haven't done a still life in...still trying to remember. It was very interesting viewing all of your older challenges using the same photo. On the other hand it could be a creative lesson in composition, lighting, ect. if we set up our…"
Feb 19
Karen Ilari replied to Mark S Ward's discussion Summer Shade
"This is beautiful Mark! I love the way you added interest with the hills in the background. Your nice warm color palette really adds to the feeling of a warm summer day :) I wish I was walking that path in the sunshine!"
Feb 19
Charles Eisener replied to Karen Ilari's discussion New Challenge?
"Won't be able to participate, but maybe it is time.  Instead of a specific photo, maybe a still life incorporating a specific vegetable, fruit, or flower type?  That would give lots of room for individual tastes and still have a…"
Feb 19

Profile Information

How long have you been painting? Doing any kind of art?
Many years
What other mediums have you used?
Oils, pastels, graphite, colored pencil, watercolor
Are their specific things you would like to learn?
Always want to learn more!
Where did you learn about this website?

Karen Ilari's Photos

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Karen Ilari's Blog

Choosing a Photo for Reference

Posted on February 21, 2016 at 11:20am 0 Comments

Ever have trouble knowing what to look for in a reference photo?

Here are a few of my thoughts on the subject.

Click here to read the blog on Choosing a Photo

Wet vs Dry - Acrylics Dry Darker - The Proof!

Posted on January 22, 2016 at 2:02pm 4 Comments

Wet vs Dry - Acrylics Dry Darker - The Proof!

So one of the things we deal with when painting with acrylics is that they dry darker then they seem when they are wet.

How many times have you walked away from a canvas thinking your highlights are just right, your value…


I'm Not a Creative Person

Posted on November 4, 2015 at 2:20pm 1 Comment

I've been thinking a lot about the role of creativity in our lives, and why I paint and teach painting.

It feels more important to me that anything I have done. And yet, we are just making pretty pictures, right?

Click here to read my blog on Creativity

Comment Wall (131 comments)

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At 9:58am on April 9, 2016, Mary said…

Thanks Karen for your response.  I did just discover the "Photos" page and that is a good way for me to do it as an option.  

If(when) it does get upgraded it would be great if you could alert us to that so we can start using that feature.  Thanks!

At 9:39am on April 9, 2016, Mary said…

Hi Karen:  

I have a question about the web site - when I am looking thru What's on your Easel on the right hand side, with their pictures and comments, - when I click to respond to someone and then hit either the back arrow on the computer, or "More" on your site,  it  takes me back to the beginning of the list.  

Is there a way that I'm missing that can get me directly to the place I left off at?

If not,  would it be possible to add that feature - would really save time.

Thanks, Mary

At 3:54pm on February 15, 2016, Mary said…

Yes Karen - that helps.  

Thanks also for your 1st critique and suggestions.  I actually did use two different blues for the lower and upper horizons but they didn't show up as distinctly in the picture as they do here live.

 Nonetheless, I should be able to improve that without redoing all of it (hopefully).  I think I will stay with the warmer sky colors because so much of the effort I've invested for underground layers includes those purples/blues and I'm afraid to add a new one into the mix (if I was YOU, that would be different!)  

I will try to add the tiny bit of yellow to the mountain shadows and see how that feels - they would be a little easier to revert back if it doesn't seem right.  

Thanks for your encouragement and tips.  Very helpful and I'll be back in touch for another round in the near future.  The wedding is 4/30/16!  

At 1:25pm on February 15, 2016, Mary said…

Hi Karen:  

I tried to following your directions to send you the Tutor pics and text of what I'm hoping to accomplish first.  Unfortunately, I don't know how or where to check on the site to see if anything actually reached you - or to check on it.  

I'm sure I'm missing something obvious here and in reality I am not as technically challenged as I may seem to be on this site.   I would expect that, privately, I would be able to go to a Tutor section on My Page perhaps and it would be located there.  I'll wait for your guidance and thanks in advance.  

(Thanks for inviting me to be your friend - I suspect that is how it gets started because otherwise I wouldn't have know how to reach you privately.)


At 6:53am on January 16, 2016, Phyllis Burnett said…
I made the color cards yesterday and will paint the red bush piece today. Thank you for responding. Phyllis
At 6:28am on December 30, 2015, Mary said…

My pleasure Karen - thanks for all you do for us and for this site! Mary

At 11:10am on November 13, 2015, Charles Eisener said…

Your community and your own insights are well worth supporting.

At 5:07pm on October 21, 2015, Dan Lefebvre said…

Thanks so much Karen.

At 10:11pm on October 10, 2015, Kathryn Hardsog said…

Thank you. I'm looking forward to this month's challenge.  It's a beautiful photo and will be lots of fun experimenting with the great fall colors.

At 6:31am on October 7, 2015, Naomi Norris said…

Hi Karen, just watched Red Tree videos...  very helpful.  I am wondering how much larger you paint and do you use larger brushes on larger paintings?  Also, do you glaze?


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