If you want to learn how to paint, you will need some skill and the desire and enthusiasm to learn! Here is a beginner’s guide to painting.


Everyone can get into painting, regardless of age or profession. Moreover, the pandemic lockdowns and isolation have allowed many of us to take up a hobby. Painting can be soothing and can ease anxiety symptoms that you may have about the new Coronavirus waves. With all the brushes, paints, and media available, learning how to paint can be intimidating. However, painting doesn’t need to be difficult or expensive. You can become a good painter with some materials, practice, and the right attitude by following the steps below.

Why do You Want to Paint

Think about why you want to paint and what you hope to gain from it before you begin. Among the artist community, reasons why they like to paint range from for fun to building bridges between themselves and the rest of humanity. According to some, the true value of painting lies in the ability to create something we love and express ourselves. Ask yourself “why” do you want to paint. Your “why” will help decide what to learn and how to proceed.

Which Medium to Choose

The next step for you is to choose a painting medium. If you know how the medium works, you can pay more attention to more important aspects of painting, such as color, composition, etc. There are three major mediums to choose from: acrylics, oils, and watercolors. There are pros and cons to every medium. Following are a few questions you should ask yourself when choosing your first painting medium.

Which Style Do You Love?

Perhaps you are drawn to watercolor paintings, or maybe there is something about acrylic paintings that appeals to you. When choosing a medium, always take into account your own personal preferences.

Are Certain Mediums Difficult to Deal With?

Imagine you want to try oil painting but live in a small apartment. You won’t be able to pack up the painting, which means taking up space. When you live with other people or have pets, this can be challenging to manage. In this case, it would be best to choose a medium that dries quickly, so you can pack up the canvas and supplies when not in use.

Which Medium is Easiest?

Acrylic is the easiest medium for beginners, while watercolor is the hardest. If you dislike acrylics, don’t force yourself to paint with them. The more important thing is to find a medium that you enjoy.

To help you decide which medium is right for you, here are a few more details about each.

For beginners, acrylics are popular and are easy to use. Acrylics are a great choice if you’re on a tight budget, sensitive to harsh chemicals, or enjoy experimenting with mixed media. The disadvantage of acrylics is that they dry very quickly, and some colors tend to become darker or lighter as they dry.

Among professional artists, oils are a popular medium. Their versatility makes them useful. Paint thinner and oil can be used to adjust paint drying time and consistency. With oil paints, you can use a wide variety of techniques, and you can’t go wrong.

Water-based colors can naturally create transparency. If you can master the techniques, you can create remarkably beautiful paintings. Due to this medium’s water-soluble nature, little can be changed once it has been applied, and once dried, it is difficult to remove. Since watercolor paintings are on paper instead of canvas or panels, they need protection.

Supplies You Will Need

As a third step in becoming a painter, ask yourself what supplies you will need. Depending on the medium you choose, you will need different supplies. Start with a starter package that includes the most basic supplies. For a beginner, it is best to keep it simple. Look for quality where it matters (e.g., brushes, canvas, paint). To begin painting, you simply need:

  • Easel to hold your artwork.
  • Canvas (for acrylic or oil painting) or paper (for watercolor).
  • Palette: For arranging and mixing paints. Mixing colors can be confusing for beginners. You can avoid this confusion by using a color mixing guide.
  • Brushes: A brush that is suitable for your chosen medium.
  • Paints: Start with a limited palette that includes red, blue, yellow (primary colors), white, and an earth tone, or with a starter kit that contains six or ten tubes of paint.
  • Palette knives: For mixing and applying paint.
  • Solvent (needed for oil painting).
  • Paper towels: used for cleaning brushes between strokes and after use.

What are the Fundamentals of Art

Color, brushwork, composition, value, edges, and techniques are the pillars of painting. By understanding them, you will be able to understand what happens when the brush hits the canvas.

There are three elements to color: saturation, hue, and value. Hue refers to the position of a color on the color wheel. The colors red, blue, yellow, and green all have different hues. The saturation of a color refers to how rich, intense, or vibrant it is. A color’s value is its lightness or darkness. The underlying value of each color – red, green, purple, etc. – lies somewhere between white and black.

In terms of composition, consider “what I want to say” and “how I will say it.” Your vision will be conveyed through the use of color, strokes, lines, and textures.

In a painting, two shapes are separated by edges. It is important to keep smooth transitions between shapes, whether they are hard, soft, or lost.

Paintings look like paintings when they have brush marks. It is natural to have these strokes and brush marks in your paintings.

With practice, time, and observing master painters, you can develop good techniques.

What Will Be the First Painting’s Subject

A beginner may find it challenging to choose a subject for painting. In this step, explore the subject you want to paint and ask yourself questions (e.g., does the subject inspire me or am I capable of painting it). You can enhance your drawing capability by using drawing diagrams.

How to Create the First Piece of Art

When you paint for the first time, take a general approach. Capture your initial impression of the subject. Consider the subject from the perspective of shapes and colors. You can then refine the painting and add more detail later. One of the tips on painting suggests that you take breaks and stand back, glance back and forth between your painting and your reference image. This gives you fresh eyes for refining your painting.

Final Words

Try not to be intimidated by the work of others and don’t worry about what other people think. You should accept criticism but not let it drive your actions. A great painter is one who learns, practices, reviews, and improves their work.