Paint is a compound that does more than bring color to almost anything— it’s a substance that allows us to grow and expand our creativity. From discovering new ways of using color to painting the perfect stroke, at Horizon Group USA, we believe everyone can learn through creativity. So, whether you’re an aspiring painter or an experienced one, we’re sharing our favorite techniques so you can keep adding color to your world!
Dress the Part
Some paints can leave permanent stains on furniture and clothing! Be sure to wear a smock, apron, or other attire you wouldn’t mind adding a little extra color to — and protect your work area with newspapers or paper towels, even if you’re using an easel.
Find Your Paint!
From watercolors to acrylics, finger-paints, and washable tempera paints, picking paint for your project depends on the artistic style you’re going for.
Use watercolors to create fluid and flowy designs. This type of paint is great for creating landscapes, skies, or even tie-dye designs because it’s not just your paintbrush that guides the color — but the water, too!
Acrylic paint is fast drying, which allows you to add multiple layers onto a painting — and even paint over any mistakes! It’s easy to create super vibrant colors and textures using acrylic paint — and, with a little bit of water, you can even make it look like watercolor! The one potential downside? Acrylic paint is permanent and will leave stains on anything it touches — clothing and furniture alike. So, remember to cover up anything you don’t want to get paint on while using acrylic!
Just like acrylic paint, tempera paint is great for layering and easy to create vibrant colors and textures with. Unlike acrylic paint, tempera paint is washable — meaning it won’t leave permanent stains on clothing or furniture. Although it does take longer to dry than acrylic paint, tempera paint is perfect for those who love to create outside the box — or the canvas!
Pick a Brush, Any Brush!
But which is the right brush for your masterpiece? The truth is, probably all of them! Use thick, wide brushes — called wash brushes — for covering large parts of a canvas or surface quickly and easily.
Brushes with slanted tips are perfect for creating lines and shapes that vary in thickness and coverage. Rounded brushes feel like you’re holding a pen or a pencil, and they’re perfect for adding details with maximum control.
Thin tipped brushes are perfect for little details and are great for adding words and phrases to your masterpiece. No matter the brush you use, just make sure to paint your strokes in the same direction — adding extra layers as needed for maximum coverage.
Plan it Out
A blank slate can be intimidating at first. Before you put brush to canvas or figurine, plan out your design. Refer to packaging for inspiration, and get to know your colors by testing them out on a piece of paper first! If you’re working with a canvas, use a pencil to draw out your design. Freehand is freeing, but laying the groundwork can help you produce your best work.
Create Your Own Color Palette
ROY G BIV. Most of us have heard of the acronym, but some of us may not have experimented with our rainbow: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, and Violet. Working with this standard family of colors gives us the chance to make each one completely unique — and mixing them together can help you add some fun dimension to your painting. Whether it’s creating all-new colors or varying shades, use a paintbrush and a palette to mix and blend standard colors together to create a color scheme that’s uniquely your own. Use white to create a lighter version of the same color and black to create different shades! Or, follow the color chart below to create different colors of paint — even if you don’t have them in a tube:
Lots ‘o Layers
Layering paint really is as easy as it sounds — just apply one layer after another, working from the bottom up. Start with big swipes of color, then refine as you continue painting. Whether you’d like to make a single color more vibrant or create an ombré effect — mastering the art of layering paint is the key to creating a masterpiece.
When it comes to adding texture to any painting, the opportunities are endless! Add a mass of dots to create a bumpy look and feel to your painting, while adding depth — a technique called pointillism. Try crumpling up a piece of paper, dipping the ends into your paint, and gently dabbing onto your surface. Or, see what happens when you use sponge dabbers! Maybe you’d like to go even bolder with your textures by introducing another component, like fuzzy sticks or feathers. Whatever you choose, just remember to let your imagination guide you — and feel free to have fun!
Who says you can only paint with a paintbrush?! Put some paint on your paintbrush, dip it into a water cup, then flick or splatter your paint onto your canvas or work surface to create an abstract landscape, stellar stars, or just some fun texture!
Experiment with Mediums!
The beauty of painting is that you can do it almost anywhere, on almost anything. From rocks to figurines, classic canvases to stepping stones — use different paints on different surfaces to make your painted creations come to life! And with projects like Window Art or Sparkling Light Catchers from our Made By Me® line, you can use paint to create artwork that transforms sunlight into sparkling rainbows!
You know the saying, “Practice makes perfect.” And when it comes to painting — strengthening your skills and mastering any technique comes with time. So, keep creating and experimenting with paints, techniques, and surfaces. Getting hands-on makes learning fun, and if you need some extra inspiration, here’s where to find it!