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Painting may not come naturally to all of us, but if you want to create works of art to hang in your home, there are plenty of techniques to try. Bring out your inner artist and discover a new passion for creating with colour using some (or all!) of these beginner-friendly methods and tips.
There is a reason why watercolours are enjoying a resurgence – it is so satisfying and mindful to sit quietly and paint a restful scene, whether that’s a landscape or a vase of flowers. You don’t need to be an artistic whizz to enjoy it – who cares if your finished piece isn’t Tate-worthy? It’s all about the process and practising applying paint to paper for something that gives you satisfaction. If you’re a total beginner, a great place to start is with a painting by numbers kit. This will help you get used to the texture of watercolours until you feel confident to get going on a blank canvas.
Acrylics are forgiving for the beginner artist and they are great fun to work with. While the effect is similar to oils, these water-soluble paints are easier to use and quicker to dry. They can also be used on a variety of non-porous surfaces, so once you get the hang of them, you can move beyond the canvas. Two top tips for beginners are that you should start with darkest colours first before applying lighter tones, and also use a good quality heavyweight paper that can support these thick paints.[image source: Image Art by Rangrez https://www.etsy.com/in-en/listing/521870600/original-flower-paintingcontemporary-art]
Blendable watercolour pencils are as good for beginners as they are for seasoned artists, so grab a set and start practising!
Some people find them easier to hold than a paintbrush, so getting used to applying colour to paper may feel more natural. You can enjoy blending colours in the same way that you would paints, but they are better for smaller areas – perfect for adding colour to stamped images if you’re not feeling totally confident about your drawing abilities.
Glass paints can take a bit of getting used to, but the gorgeous creations that you’ll be able to come up with are well worth the effort. Use thicker glass paints to create an outline then fill in with transparent ones for a lovely stained-glass effect. Start with a simple design – you can draw this onto paper before overlaying your glass pane and tracing the outline and colours so your finished piece is mistake-free. Check out our choices here.
Paint pour is proving a winner among younger age groups, but this messy craft is perfect for adults too. The great news is that you really don’t need to be a good artist to come up with something impressive and original. It’s all about the colours and how you mix them, so think about your favourite hues and use tones of them, or apply a colour wheel theory for complementary opposites. Tone it with your interior to make sure you have something to display with pride. Use acrylics which can be thinned out with a pouring medium, if you would like to.
Thought finger painting was just for kids? Think again! If you do an internet search, you’ll find an array of amazing artworks all done using digits. Non-toxic tempera paint is ideal, and you’ll be able to mix colours together to come up with your ideal hue. Start with something simple and abstract – look to nature for inspiration as flowers and trees are ideal.[image source: Amy Latta Creations https://www.amylattacreations.com/]
Create interesting abstract effects using masking fluid and drawing gum before painting over with inks and watercolours. Simply paint your design onto paper, allow to dry and then add colour over the top. It is also perfect for brush painting sentiments and greetings, perhaps decorating with a simple motif, before adding your colour – it works well with a touch of sparkle too![image source: Image Lemon Creation https://www.lemoncreation.com/index.php/2018/04/17/drawing-gum-technique-atcs/]
Now here is a painting technique that will release your inner child! Bubble painting creates unique designs... and it’s great fun too! Simply make a bubble mix of non-toxic paint (or food colouring can work well, too), water and washing up liquid, use a straw to blow some bubbles and then gently overlay paper onto your coloured bubbles. This will produce a print that you can use to create floral designs, or use as the background for another piece of art. Give it a go, see what you come up with and what work of art it inspires you to create.[image source: https://www.apieceofrainbow.com/bubble-paint-flower-hydrangeas/]