My art process has evolved throughout the years as I’ve developed my own distinct way of using light and color in my art.


Acrylics are my current medium of choice. Throughout the years I have painted with oils as well.

I don’t limit myself to any specific substrate. I love working with different materials, including canvases, wood panels, and live edge slabs. A live edge slab is a cross-section of a tree with the organic curved edges of the trunk left alone, in contrast to piece of lumber where the edges are cut to be straight.

Art process of Cedar Lee painting on a live edge slab
Artist with painting: Hydrologic Cycle. ~27″ x 32″, Acrylic on Live Edge Slab, © 2021 Cedar Lee


My usual process is to plan out my painting with the help of photos and collage, then make a printout of my plans to work from. Once I transfer the important parts of my plan onto my canvas, I look at the plans less and less as I let the painting process take over.

I usually block in all the large areas of color first, then add more layers of detail until it feels finished. For me, art is a combination of careful planning and intuitive play.

Cedar Lee painting large scale forest art
Artist painting: Earth’s Forest. 48″ x 48″, Acrylic on Canvas, © 2022 Cedar Lee

I use a variety of techniques and textures in my paintings. Some of my paintings have a base layer of thick impasto texture created with acrylic molding paste. Sometimes I drip fluid paint down the canvas. I often work in subtle thin glazes of color, creating glowing light effects. I paint details with small brushes.

By switching between palette knives and brushes, opaque and transparent paint, I achieve a variety of textures and effects within one painting.

Cedar Lee's art process in the painting studio

Continual Evolution

Since 2005, I’ve painted a large variety of subjects, but you can see the same artist’s hand in my work throughout the years.

Within my continual experimentation in the studio, I pride myself on my knowledge of art materials and best practices for creating art that is professionally finished, ready to hang, durable, and made to stand the test of time. In this area I am always learning more and improving.

I consider myself equally proficient painting on a small or a large scale.

Much of my work is extremely large-scale, including works up to 10 feet across. There is nothing more exciting to me than creating large-scale, dramatic and inspiring art that makes people say “Wow!”  

You can see many time lapse painting videos, as well as in-depth explanations of my art process, on YouTube and my other social media accounts.

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