How to Get Started in Painting

Painting is an art form that has been around for thousands of years. It is the act of putting pigment (color) on a surface (like paper or canvas).

The best way to get started painting is to start with an idea and find something that excites you. Whether it’s something that you have already seen, or something you want to learn how to paint, finding the right subject for your painting can be challenging.

Choosing the Right Painting

One of the most important things to consider when selecting a subject for painting is the “big why” of your art project. This might be a personal goal, like being able to make realistic portraits of your friends and family, or it might be to challenge yourself to paint like John Singer Sargent.

Whether you choose a subject for your art project, or it’s something that you want to learn to paint, the first step is to determine the size and shape of the canvas that you will use. You will also need to decide which type of medium to use (oil, acrylic, watercolor).

Selecting the Right Brush

Using the wrong brush can result in a painting that looks unfinished or that doesn’t look like it was painted at all. A good brush should have a variety of sizes and shapes so that you can cover all areas of the painting quickly, while still being able to keep the shape of the canvas intact.

A small, rounded brush works well for blending and painting softer colors. A larger, flat, and broader brush is better for blocking in details and painting larger surfaces.


When working with oils, dabs of paint can add texture and movement to your work. This is a technique that has been used by artists for centuries, including Claude Monet and Bob Ross.


Splatter is another fun painting technique that can make your painting look more real. This method is used to create natural-looking splashes and explosions or express movement.

It can also be used to paint a starry sky, sand and dirt, or anything else that you want to add some texture.

Using the Right Colors

A great painter should be familiar with a wide variety of color. This will ensure that they have enough colors to paint whatever the picture might be, and it will help them to blend the various shades of a color when necessary.

The most important thing to remember when selecting colors is that a painter should be able to mix the different hues together without losing their intensity or mixing too much of any shade. This is important for any painting, but especially a painting of a human face because the skin tones aren’t always the same.

To achieve this, a painter should mix different shades of the same color to get an approximate match. For example, if the face in the painting has bright highlights in the cheeks and mouth, then the white paint should be mixed with a touch of gray to represent these.