Values - The Key

More important than color - understanding values will take you to the next level

Understanding and using values in your painting is one of the hardest concepts to grasp. Believe me! Both from my own experience, and my experience in helping others learn to paint. It is the #1 challenge most beginners face.

Most people focus on detail in drawing and color, not understanding why their painting just doesn't look "right". We have to learn to understand and look for values first, and it really is something you have to train your eye and mind to see and reproduce.

In this course you will find written materials explaining and illustrating what values are. Then I'll give you some exercises to complete. Included is one short video further explaining values.

After that we will paint a scene starting with 5 basic black and white values, then move on to full values and finally adding color.You will be able to upload your painting as you go and I'll give you any personalized help you might need!

As always, I encourage you to share your progress! It is sometimes hard to see at first if you "got it right" with values. I'm here to help! Please do share :)

Your Instructor

Karen Ilari
Karen Ilari

As a full time acrylic artist and teacher living in Portland, Oregon. I am inspired by the amazing natural and man made beauty around me. Painting is my way of stopping all the busy madness of life for a moment. I slow down and study what is around me, the colors and shapes, the beauty that we pass every day but stop seeing because it is familiar. With each painting I try to tell a story, to share all the sensations of the day. Sounds, smells, and emotions. The paintings remind me to live each day with an open heart and an open mind. To slow down and enjoy life!

I paint outdoors "en pein air" as well as indoors in my studio. I will often spend a day out painting, taking lots of photos, and then come back to the studio to develop my painting further. My process involves many layers of acrylic paint on canvas. This creates depth, texture and interest throughout the canvas. I often become happily immersed in the process for many hours at a time.

I also love to pass on what I've learned about painting. I teach locally in Portland, as well as here online. I host a free online Art Community website as well. You are most welcome to join me and the other members to share your art and ideas with painters from around the world!

For more info, visit my website:

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.

Thank you for enrolling in this course. Your better understanding of values awaits!

Get started now!