Flowers & Paisley Painting Tutorial I



It’s been a while since I posted a painting tutorial. I thought it was time to come back with some of my original paintings inspired loosely by my love of paisley and give the low down on just how it all comes together.

I’ll be posting these in a series of four tutorials in the coming weeks. First up is this lovely guy on the left. I really love to paint with bright colors as you can tell, and also I hate mixing colors so there is usually relatively little custom paint mixing involved.

Tools and Materials (for the entire series)

4  8×10 frame (I use canvas board so the slip easily into regular gallery wall frames)

4 8 x 10 Canvas board

Carbon Paper

Paint Brushes

Paints (outlined below)

  • Cadmium Red Light
  • Cadmium Yellow (Pale Hue)
  • Dioxazine Purple
  • Magenta
  • Permanent Alizarin Crimson
  • Phthalo Green (Blue Shade)
  • Naples Yellow Hue (Pale Hue)
  • Titanium White


Step 1. Using the sketch outline trace over it with a piece of  transfer paper onto the canvas board. Sketch outline is attached at the bottom of the post.

Step 2. Paint the background of the canvas with a mixture of Cadmium yellow and titanium white. I placed a some of each color onto my palette next to each other and load 1 corner of a stiff bristled brush with yellow and 1 with the white. Then directly on the canvas I lay down the paint in an x pattern mixing better in some spots than others, leaving a mottled effect.

Step 3. Since I’m usually working with the water mixable oils (oils take longer than latex to dry) at this point I tend to leave the background alone for a couple of days to set up a bit mostly because I’m clumsy and forgetful and tend lean my hand into the wet paint often.

Step 4. Using the image and paint by number guide below fill in the flowers and paisley designs.

  1. Varying mixture of Permanent Alizarin Crimson and Titanium White some of the more orange areas I added a touch of Cadmium Red Light
  2. Cadmium Red Light and Titanium White. The inner portion of the paisley design is just a lighter version of the outer rim and dots made by adding more white
  3. Varying intensities of Magenta and Titanium White
  4. Each petal is a varying mixture of Titanium White, Cadmium Red Light with touches of  Permanent Alizarin Crimson
  5. Dioxazine Purple almost straight from the tube and a speck of Titanium White
  6. Cadmium Red Light and Naples Yellow Hue along with some Titanium White Highlights
  7. Alizarin Crimson and a speck of Titanium White
  8. Cadmium yellow
  9. Add the final detail dots in your choice of complimentary colors

Some Tips

While the paint is still wet dry brush with white paint to highlight

I usually paint 2 coats on each area to achieve the vibrant colors

Remember to have fun it’s just paint you can always paint over it if you don’t like it

 Click link below for PDF of sketch

Paisley Flower Art I

PS: Don’t forget to check out Part II here and Part III here and Part IV here.

PPS: If you like this project stroll on over to our tutorials page to see our other projects

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