Painting for Beginners – Painting Using Layers

Lonely Tree

Many people look at a painting and are taken back and awe struck by the artist’s skill. Granted there are some very talented people out there. But I want to demonstrate how many of the beautiful paintings that you have seen were created. I encourage you to watch this video on painting for beginners.

The video highlights one of the most overlooked techniques that isLonely Tree essential to creating depth and a three-dimensional image. Using layers, you can work on small parts of a painting at a time. Breaking your painting down into pieces like this also allows you to focus on one part at a time.

Think of this like writing a book or essay, or building an engine, or even building a house. You don’t jump all over doing several things at once. You break your tasks down into smaller tasks and prioritize each into what order they need to be done.

Painting a scene or landscape requires the images in the back to be done first and each successive visual plane done in sequential order moving forward. Basically start in the back and work toward the front. But this is also done when painting individual objects.

Watch the video and take note of each step. Watch as I paint the mountains and tree. I don’t paint the tree first and then try to fill the back ground after. I lay the base of the mountains first, then lay the snow on after. I get the shape of the tree then give it color and leaves. Even the leaves get different layers of color to give them depth.

This video is not meant so much as a tutorial, but more a demonstration of the method. Pay attention to how I lay different parts of the image down. Take note that there are many points throughout the process that I could have stopped and left the image as a finished painting.


I hope you enjoyed watching the video and this post.  Please leave me some comments below.  Was this helpful?  let me know.


4 Comments on “Painting for Beginners – Painting Using Layers”

  1. I enjoyed your video. This year, I tried painting on canvas for the first time. For me, painting on canvas was rather scary. Canvas isn’t cheap and I was afraid of wasting it on awful mistakes. However, I quickly found out you can paint over… kind of like the techniques you used with layering. Realizing that really helped free me a bit.

    What medium are your using? I ask, because your paint blends so nicely. My first painting were with Acrylic and I’ve tried one painting with Oil. I also understand that the quality of paints affect how well the paint covers and blend. Any particular brand suggestions?


    1. Renee,
      I use acrylic. The techniques I use can be used with oils, but the two do definitely act different. There are many mediums you can add to acrylics to get them to act differently. Water can even do a certain amount to help paints mix and blend better on the canvas. See my other post on mediums.

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