5 Acrylic Painting Techniques for Beginners


Acrylic painting is one of the most popular mediums for beginners because the paints are affordable, easy to mix and fast-drying. Acrylics are suitable for most materials, and you can paint on everything from canvas to leather. If you make a mistake, it’s fairly easy to repair the damage. These paints are also water-resistant and leave a smooth finish once dry.

Use these acrylic painting techniques and you’ll become a pro in no time.

Choose your paint and brushes  

If you’re completely new to painting, it’s essential to have all the materials you need to get started. Acrylics are cheap to buy, and we recommend stocking up on a range of colours to work with. It’s best to use synthetic paintbrushes because they hold acrylic paint more efficiently than natural fibres. Invest in a range of shapes and sizes so you can experiment with different effects in your work. You’ll soon discover the types of brushes you prefer to use.

Paint your largest strokes first

Acrylic dries very quickly, which is both a blessing and a curse. If you’re a perfectionist who likes spending time on the finer details, this could compromise the whole piece because the paint can dry on the palette before you’re finished. It’s better to get the largest strokes out of the way first and save the finer details for later.


Another great technique for perfectionists is misting. This involves spraying water onto your painting to prevent it from drying out, buying you more time to craft the effect you want. Fill up a spray bottle with water and spray the area you want to work on. Use this method sparingly because you don’t want the entire piece to become sodden.


Although acrylics are thick and fast-drying, it’s possible to use blending techniques. While the blending isn’t as intricate as it is with watercolour painting, you can still introduce some softer elements into your acrylic paintings. Take a clean, dry brush and gently apply it to the area you want to blend. You can also add strokes of white paint to achieve colour gradients and softer edges. Make sure you act quickly before the paint dries.


Why not enhance your painting by mimicking the appearance of watercolour? By diluting the acrylic paint with water, you can make it more translucent and create some stunning effects.

Do you want to conquer more types of painting? Check out our tips for painting on silk.


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