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How to Paint by Numbers like a Pro?

by Tracy Miller

Paintbrush Guide

At Craft-Ease™ , we support art therapy by offering high quality tools, as well as a detailed paint brush guide to help you make the most of our kits.

While there are many types of paint brushes and different paint brush sizes, we’ll cover the most popular, explain what each one is used for, and how to choose the right paint brush.

    1. Round: This paint brush can help create thick-to-thin strokes as well as watercolor wash effects.

    2. Liner: The linter brush is perfect for details, thin lines, precision, outlining, or decorative lines.

    3. Flat: Flat brushes are often used to color in blocks, shade, blend, and highlight. It can create sharp, square shape, and crip edges.

    4. Angular Shader: This brush is used for tight shading, curved strokes, and stroke work.

    5. Wash/Glaze: This brush has large, broad bristles and is ideal for washes, base-coating, applying glazes, finishes, and sweeping strokes of large areas.

    6. Filbert/Oval: This brush has a round shape, which helps to create strokes with soft edges.

Our guide has all of the best brushes for paint by number kits—for further guidance, visit our painting tutorial, and make sure to browse our wide selection to get started!

Tracy Miller teaches Paint by Numbers

Having over 25 years of experience and being featured in industry's most well known magazines including Professional Artists, Cowboys & Indians and Southwest Art, Tracy is a celebrity fauvist painter most noted for her works surrounding wildlife. You'd love her bold strokes of bright colors and how she brings soulful animals to life through paintings!

Featuring Tracy's "Horse and Stars" also available in Diamond Art Kit

Paintbrush and Paints

Get Your Hands On...🎨

  1. A bucket of clean water to clean your brushes
  2. Paper towel that you can use to wipe clean your brushes thoroughly. So, when you paint you won’t mix the paint colors
  3. A stand or easel to put your canvas or lay the canvas flat on a table. To make it easier to view and work with the canvas
  4. Q-tip to correct the slight paint off the guided lines

Get Your Hands Dirty...🖌

  1. Start with a larger area, easy-to-spot, or by choosing your first paint color
  2. Match the number on the canvas with the paint pots and wet the brush!
  3. Pick up a small amount of paint first. Then, adjust the amount as you go
  4. Start from the edge of the area and fill it with the paint
  5. Make a mistake? Don’t worry! Q-tip will save it! Just dip it in the water and dab it on the mistake
Paintbrush and Paints

Be confident with your brushwork!

Pointers For The Champions 🏆

  1. Be confident with your brushwork! Don't be afraid to lay that brush down.
  2. One thing to note about acrylic paint. It dries very quickly, especially depending on where you leave it. So, in between using all the individual paints, remember to close the lid of the paint pot!
  3. If you feel like your brush is not dragging well, or moving well. Dip it again in the water to smoothen it.
  4. Find a way you feel most comfortable to paint - either stand your canvas on an easel or lay it flat on the table.
  5. Make sure to let the paint color dry on your canvas before painting with another color to avoid smudging.
  6. Great thing with a flat brush is that you can use it in 2 different ways. Go flat, or go side. The flat side will cover the largest area while the thin side can cover smaller, thinner areas without needing to pick up a different brush to work with.
  7. Double-check your color guide to see where are the other areas that use the same paint color before switching to another paint color.

But the most important thing is to take your time - don not worry about the mistakes and just enjoy the therapeutic experience of painting!

Paint like a Pro - Splatter Effect

Some paintings may have used splatter effects which can be too small the area to paint on. Worry not, just cover it up! Then, you can follow the below steps to see how to recreate the splatter effects!

The Secret Weapons are...

  1. Painting palette or paper plate
  2. Brushes or even an old toothbrush

How it's done!

  1. Pick up a little bit of paint you choose and put it on your palette/plate
  2. Really wet your brush
  3. Swirl it on the paint, make sure it is watery enough
  4. Tap the handle of the brush on your palm, right over your canvas and make the paint splatter
  5. To change to another color, just dip your brush in the water and redo the steps!

Last but not least...

Just a last little tip from Tracy before you hang your masterpiece on the wall. If you are not using a frame, paint all the edges and sides of your canvas with the same painting background color. That will render a really neat and professional masterpiece on your wall!


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