If you are looking to learn to paint or you just want something quick and easy to paint, you have come to the right place! You can easily follow this quick written tutorial on how to slap this simple painting together. This is the first of a continuing series I call Easy Acrylic Painting Ideas. These will all be simple paintings that anyone can do. So, let’s get to it! Watch the video down at the bottom of this post.
Tools and supplies
- Primary Blue
- Primary Red
- Titanium White
Some simple brushes will get you through this, but I used a 2” decorator’s brush, a fan brush, an angular and a pointed round. If you don’t know these terms check out my previous post about brushes.
If you don’t have all these brushes it’s fine, just use a small pointed and a larger brush with a chiseled edge or close to it.
I always start with the background. This is the sky and water in the painting. It is difficult to add things in the background after the fact. If you want, you can wet the canvas first to help the colors blend better, but I found a dry canvas gave me the effect I was looking for.
Using a 2” decorator’s brush (or what ever you have in a large brush), mix blue with a small amount of black and paint the very top of the canvas with crisscross strokes to blend things together.
Add some red to the blue and keep working down the canvas. You are looking for a deep purple color here. I regularly give some straight even strokes across the canvas to smooth things out.
Add a small amount of white into the blue/purple and draw a straight line across the canvas at about 2/3 or so down the canvas. Now use the same Blue/Purple/White and blend up into the darker sky above the line.
I then added a few quick strokes with red on the brush and blended everything in a 45 degree angle up and to the right.
The water should be done with a mix of blue and white to your flavor of color. Work from the sides into the middle using horizontal straight strokes. Keep the lines flat and horizontal. This will make sense later.
Fill the bottom of the canvas below your line like this. It is okay to leave a few light spots and have different shades of blue. Remember the water is reflecting the sky.
Stars and Moon
Grab a small brush, I used a pointed round. Load the brush with pure white paint. Get the brush wet now and work the water and paint together on your palette. You want a runny flowing paint here.
Using another brush, gently tap the paint covered brush against the handle of the other brush to spatter little white dots onto your sky. STARS! Easy Peazy.
Using the same small brush mix a tiny amount of blue into some white and start with a small circle for your moon. Working in a circular motion grow the moon out to however big you want it. Leaving a mix of different shades in the moon will give it a more textured surface. Like when you see the shadows and craters on the moon.
I used a mix of my fan brush and my 2” brush to make the trees but use what you have. Start with a vertical line in black paint. Keep it nice and skinny. Then using the chiseled edge of your brush just tap or push the boughs of the tree into existence. You don’t need to be aggressive, start light and play with it until you get the right look.
Add as many trees as you like. Try not to get too carried away.
Mix blue and black to get a dark blue. I used a fan brush but a small pointed round or anything with a sharp edge will work. Gently start at the base of your trees and add some subtle horizontal lines in the general mirrored shape of the trees underneath them. Start very lightly and grow. Try not to slap too much paint on here as this is a subtle shadow we are trying to create.
Use your small brush and lay out the general shape of the top of your snow in pure white. Then do the same for where the snow meets the water/ice. Fill in the spaces between with white.
Now using a slightly larger brush (if you have one) load up with white and paint from the base of each hill up and out following the shape of the top of the hill.
Grab the small brush and give the snow a solid edge at the water’s edge by tracing the base and cleaning up any brush strokes.
Using the brush (or similar) that you used to make the trees, load up with white and tap some snow onto the trees in the same way you painted the trees earlier. Just don’t get too crazy. A small amount of snow on the trees will go a long way. Spread it out and start with very little then add more if you feel the need.
Using a sharp-edged brush or the pointed round, add a few tiny horizontal lines in white extending out from the snow. A couple here and there will do.
Then below the moon in relation to trees and shadows and using your knowledge of how a mirror works, add a few faint lines in a rough shape of a circle on the water to give the sheen and reflection of the moon.
Obviously, you can use whatever colors and techniques you like. This is a quick tutorial for beginners to help give them a place to start and learn some easy techniques that work very well to create some stunning art.
I hope you enjoyed this first installment of Easy Acrylic Painting Ideas, and if you have questions or comments please leave them below in the comments section. Also, if you did this painting I would love to hear how it went and see the results.
Thanks for reading,