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Paint by Number – How To Guide

Paint by Number – How To Guide

Paint by Number kits are a great way to ease into the world of painting. These kits provide a detailed outline of the image you'll be painting, and each section is numbered so that you can easily find the corresponding paint color. 

While Paint by Number kits can be a great way to get started with painting, it's important to note that they're not just for beginners. Paint by Number kits can be a fun and relaxing activity for people of all skill levels. And with a little practice, you may even find that you're able to create your own Paint by Number masterpiece.

Top 10 Paint by Number Tips

  1. Ensure you work in a well-lit area. This will help you see the details more clearly and avoid mistakes. It's also a good idea to have a magnifying glass close by to get a closer look at small pieces and ensure that everything is painted correctly.
  2. Begin by painting the smallest areas on the canvas first, and progressively move to the larger areas. Work on one section at a time, and take your time. The key is to be patient and careful with the details.
  3. If possible, let each painted area dry completely – for approximately 10 to 15 minutes. This will help ensure that the paint adheres to the surface properly and creates a smooth, even finish.
  4. It's important to wash your paintbrush thoroughly before moving to a different color paint. This ensures that you won't contaminate your colors and ruin your painting, and keeps the paint colors true and vibrant.
  5. Blending colors can be a great way to create new shades and hues. However, it's important to leave a tiny amount of the original paint colors when blending if you later find you've missed an area requiring that color.
  6. Toothpicks are great for mixing colors. They're also perfect for filling in very small areas on your canvas.
  7. Use enough paint to cover the numbers, but not so much that it will run into the adjacent cells.
  8. To prevent smudging the wet paint, start painting at the top of the canvas and working your way downwards. This will ensure the wet paint stays above your working hand.
  9. Double-check that the lids on the paint pots are tightly closed when you're not using them to ensure your paints won't dry out.
  10. While it's not a must, you can seal your completed Paint by Numbers project with a clear acrylic sealer. This will help protect your work and keep it looking great for years to come.

A beginner's guide to Paint by Numbers

If you've recently purchased your first Paint by Numbers kit, you might be a little nervous about starting and not sure exactly where to begin. You don't need to worry; we'll walk you through the process. Also, please don't be concerned if you've never picked up paint and brushes before today – Pretty Neat Creative's kits were designed to make the process as easy and enjoyable as possible. There are no rules. As with any art form, this is yours to play and work with as you please.

Setting up

To get started with your Paint by Numbers kit, you'll need a flat surface or an easel if you prefer using one. You can also tape down your canvas to a large piece of wood, cardboard, or foam board. If your canvas happens to arrive with a few wrinkles, you'll need to remove these before you start painting. Spray a light mist of water over the back side of the canvas and iron on the lowest setting. Do this before you use any paint. Set up your working area in a place where you'll have good light – either from a natural source by a window or with a strong table lamp. You might also find a magnifying glass useful for those teeny tiny bits.

Lay down a few paper towels and a cup of water nearby to clean your brushes as you paint. Don't allow the paint to dry on the brush, as it will damage the bristles and be hard to clean once dry. You'll also want to clean your brush between each color so as not to contaminate the following paint color. To clean your brush, dip it in the water, swirl it around and wipe on a paper towel.

Get painting

Where to begin is often the first question many people ask. The most obvious answer is – it's entirely up to you. But… you will want to consider a few things:

  • Where your arm will be resting. If you're right-handed, it's advisable to start in the top left of the canvas and work your way down and to the right. This will prevent you from resting your hand or arm on the areas you've already painted. But if you prefer painting all the cells of one certain number/color first, this is also possible. Just make sure the paint is dry before resting your hand on it to prevent smudges.
  • It's advisable to start with the lighter colors first and then move on to the darker colors. This way, you can paint slightly over the lighter colors to ensure a perfect finish to the specific cell you're painting.
  • Keep your reference guide close at hand to check colors as you work.
  • Paint slightly over the lines of each cell you're working on, which will ensure there are no gaps in the final painting.
  • Be sure not to overload your brush with paint. This way, you will be able to control where you put down the paint.
  • Cover the lines and numbers. Add a second coat if the paint is too translucent.
  • Switch between the different-sized brushes for the different-sized areas you're working on.
  • Make sure you keep your paint pots closed between use to prevent drying. You'll hear an audible 'click,' and you'll know your pot is securely closed. If your paint becomes too thick, add a drop or two of water and stir with a toothpick. It's also a good idea to stir your paint before use.
  • Up close, your painting might look like a mess. It's not, we promise you. Paint by Number kits were designed to be viewed from a distance.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Paint by Numbers?

Paint by numbers is a popular form of painting that has been around for centuries. The basic premise is simple: each section of the painting is assigned a number, and the corresponding paint color is used to fill in that section. The result is a beautiful, complex painting that looks like it was created by a professional artist. Paint by numbers kits are available at Pretty Neat Creative, and they offer a great way to enjoy the satisfaction of creating a masterpiece without having to be an experienced painter. Acrylic paints are the most commonly used type of paint for paint by numbers kits, as they provide good coverage and dry quickly. However, watercolor and oil paints can also be used. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced artist, paint by numbers is a fun and rewarding activity that anyone can enjoy.

What does my Paint by Number kit include?

Paint by Number kits are a fun and easy way to create a beautiful piece of art. All you need is the kit, which includes a pre-printed canvas, a set of acrylic paints, and numbered paint pots. Simply match the numbers on the paint pots to the corresponding areas on the canvas, and Paint by Number! The Paint by Number process is perfect for those who want to try painting but don't know where to start. Plus, it's a great way to relax and de-stress. With Paint by Number, anyone can be an artist!

How many paint colors are included?

When placing your Paint by Number order with Pretty Neat Creative, you'll have the option of choosing between the 24, 36, and 48 color pallets. The more colors you choose for your pallet, the more detailed and authentic your final painting will be.

Will I need to buy additional supplies?

Paint by Number kits are a great way to get into painting, and Pretty Neat Creative offers some of the best kits available. All of our Paint by Number kits come with everything you need to get started, including the paints, the brush, and the numbered canvas. The only extra supplies you'll need are paper towels and water to clean your paintbrush

I've never painted before. Will I need to mix or blend colors?

In Paint by Number, every color or every value of color is provided for you. No blending or mixing of colors is required. As an example, when painting a sky, light to dark values of blue will be provided based on the artwork.

Are multiple layers of paint required?

The darker opaque colors usually only require one coat, but some of the lighter more translucent colors might require two coats to ensure optimum coverage.

How long does it take to complete a Paint by Numbers kit?

Paint by Number kits are a great way to relax and unwind. The act of painting is therapeutic and can be done quickly or slowly, depending on your preference. Paint by Number kits come in a variety of sizes, so you can choose one that will fit your schedule. If you want to complete a project quickly, opt for a smaller size. If you want to enjoy the process over a series of weeks or months, choose a larger size with a higher level of detail. It all depends on your mood.

How long does the paint take to dry?

Because the paint is water-based acrylic paint, it will dry to the touch within 10 – 15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the paint application.

How often should I clean my brushes?

Paint by Number kits are a fun and easy way to create a beautiful piece of art. However, many people overlook the importance of cleaning their paintbrushes when changing colors or after each painting session. Acrylic paints are water-based, so they can dry out quickly if they are not cleaned properly. As a result, it is advisable to clean your paintbrush when changing colors as well as after each painting session. This will help to keep your brushes in good condition and prevent the colors from bleeding into each other.

How do I clean my paintbrush?

It is important to clean your brushes thoroughly after each use to prevent the paint from drying out and ruining the bristles. The best way to clean a paintbrush is to rinse it well in a brush basin or container of water. If needed, you can add a touch of mild soap to clean the paint from the bristles thoroughly. Once the brush is clean, reshape the bristles and allow the brush to dry between uses. Never let a brush sit in a water container or rest on its bristles, as this can damage the brush.

What do I do with my completed Paint by Numbers canvas?

A Paint by Number project is a work of art that can be enjoyed for years to come. Once the painting is complete, it can be placed in a frame for display. When framing, it is not necessary to frame with glass; however, when framing with glass, be sure to use a matte board so that the artwork is not directly touching the glass. Paint by Number projects also make lovely gifts for friends and loved ones.

Order your custom Paint by Number Kit today! 

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