First and foremost, know what and where the focal point of your painting will be. Remember, placement of elements in the painting is always important. What do you want the viewer to see most in your painting?
Warm colors bring an image forward, cool colors recede.
Colors gray with distance and atmosphere.
Color balance and placement are important. Bright colors draw and focus attention. Use them sparingly, only in areas that demand attention. Soften hues where attention is not important.
Use of light and shadow not only add dramatics, but can be used to temper unnecessary areas.
The center of interest should always be away from
from the center of the painting.
Unusual shapes change the focus of the eye and mind.
Establish a vanishing point to give depth to a painting.
Shapes are smaller and less detailed with distance.
Avoid depressed lines, especially those that lead the eye out of
the painting or away from the center of interest.
Strengthen corners with convex shapes leading the eye into
the body of the painting.
Establish lead-ins beginning at the edges of the painting
Rocks and foam patterns can be important leads.
Blurring secondary areas gives the eye relief.
Extreme localized detail draws attention.
Direction of brushstrokes can be used to direct the mind
toward the focal point.