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How to paint with Acrylics on Canvas

Be bold, be inspired and have a go at painting with Acrylics on Canvas.

Acrylic Painting

Painting with Acrylics is really rewarding, I have found. Acrylics are pretty forgiving, allowing you to go over any mistakes and add as many layers as you like, once you have grasped the techniques and brush strokes for your particular painting style.

Painting straight on to the Canvas

With my style of painting, I like to paint straight on to the canvas without any pencil or charcoal drawing first. I used to draw my work first but I then decided to ditch the pencil and went straight for the paintbrush. This meant that I didn’t need to carefully go over any lines and also meant I didn’t need to do any rubbings out, risking leaving a mark on the page or rubbing into any paint.

There are of course many different styles of working, using pencil, pen and ink, watercolour and so on, all are beautiful, it’s just a different style of working. For me, I have developed a style of using various different brushes to do the work of drafting my original paintings on canvas. This has taken lots of practice, but I really enjoy this way of working which is quite freeing.

The Canvas

I find using a Canvas board for acrylic painting is great as you don’t need to stretch or flatten your art paper and it is then ready to hang or put in a frame of your choice. As I sometimes apply the paint on quite thickly or use many layers of paint, I find using a stretched canvas is really useful for this way of working as it doesn’t bubble or warp during the painting process.


It’s a good idea to get a few sets of various brushes in different sizes and tips so that you can find the right ones for how you like to work. You may find a particular brand or bristle type works better for you, so it’s worth trying a few out as it makes a real difference to the quality of your work when you find a brush that does exactly what you want it to. I am still always searching for that next perfect brush and it’s really satisfying when the right one is in your hand for a particular task.

Be Bold

It’s not always easy when staring at a blank canvas and can be an anxious time when you first put paint to paper. But I say just go for it, be bold and have a go. Find something that inspires you, something that you love or enjoy and just begin. With acrylics you can go over it, let it dry a bit and begin again if you’ve gone over a line you didn’t want. So be free, enjoy and create, it’s a wonderfully therapeutic and enjoyable process once you get going. And as with anything the more you do, the better at it you’ll become. Any helpful tips you’d like to know about for another blog or for a future e-course please get in touch on my website and let me know.

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