This list outlines major art styles from most realistic to least. Learning about different art styles, seeing what painters have created, and trying different approaches is all part of the journey of developing your own painting style.
Art Style: Photorealism
Photorealism is a style which often seems more real than reality, with detail down to the last grain of sand and wrinkle on someone's face. Where nothing is left out, nothing is too insignificant or unimportant not to be included in the painting. Though it doesn't mean an artist painting in this style doesn't consider the arrangement of things to make a stronger composition.
Art Style: Realism
Mona Lisa Painting
Techniques of the Old Masters: Leonardo da Vinci and Rembrandt
How to Paint in a Painterly Style
How to Paint like Monet
What Colors Did the Impressionists Use for Shadows?
Techniques of the Impressionists: Broken Color
In the example of this art style shown, for instance, while we know no-one's face is truly green, nor does anyone have a line around their chin or for a nose, we still recognize it as a painting of a face. But instead of it focusing on being a likeness of someone, it's a painting that conveys a sense of mood and emotion foremost.
How to Paint Like an Expressionist
Palettes and Techniques of the Masters: Vincent van Gogh
Photos: Vincent van Gogh and Expressionism
Art Style: Abstraction
How to Paint Abstract Art from Photos
Using Nature as a Source for Inspiration for Abstract Art
Painting Photo Galleries: Urban Abstractions, City Abstractions, Abstracting Nature
At its worst, abstract art looks like a accidental mess of paint. At its best, it has an impact that strikes you from the moment you see it.
How to Interpret Abstract Art
How to Paint a Color-Field
Painting Without a Road Map
Step-by-Step Demo: Abstract Art