Acrylic Painting for Kids and Beginners: Bird Silhouette | Em Winn | Skillshare

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Acrylic Painting for Kids and Beginners: Bird Silhouette

teacher avatar Em Winn, Teacher, Art Instructor, Artist

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

3 Lessons (14m)
    • 1. Introduction and Supplies Needed for Project

    • 2. Step 1: Paint Background

    • 3. Step 2: Paint Birds on a Branch

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About This Class

Are you searching for a fun and unique painting project for your child? 

Are you looking for an art project that will ensure artistic success and confidence?

Are you seeking an experienced art teacher to guide your child into the wonderful world of acrylic painting?

This Bird Silhouette Painting Project may be just what you are looking for! Designed with beginners in mind, this project is perfect for children ages 8+. By following along with me, step-by-step, your child will learn the skills to create masterpieces of their own long after the project is complete.

There are two steps in this art project:

  • Step 1: Paint Background
  • Step 2: Paint Birds Sitting on a Branch

The process used to teach this project is a kid-tested, step-by-step method that will both inspire and delight your child into painting action! This process involves observing, following instructions, and creating until the student is happy with the desired outcome.

Students will learn basic acrylic painting techniques and apply these techniques to complete this project. This Bird Silhouette Painting Project is designed to give children the tools they need to begin their artistic journey into self-expression, reflection, and creative thinking.

Supplies and materials needed for this project:

Let the creative fun begin!

Meet Your Teacher

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Em Winn

Teacher, Art Instructor, Artist


Hi. My name is Em Winn and teaching art to children is what I love to do! I pride myself on creating dynamic, meaningful, and engaging art lessons that are taught in a relaxing and joyful way. I have over 20 years teaching experience in the elementary classroom and in the art studio, and I feel that I have a good grasp on how to create a learning environment that makes children feel happy, motivated, confident, and successful. Let the creative fun begin!

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1. Introduction and Supplies Needed for Project: Hey, friends, how are you? I hope you're having a great day today. Today we will be creating this cute bird picture. It's made with acrylic panes, and basically it's a silhouette of two birds looking off into the sunset, so I'd like to go over the supplies and the materials that you will need for this project. The first thing that you'll need is a piece of paper. The paper should be a little bit thicker than regular copy paper. So if you have watercolor paper or acrylic paper or just a card stock that's pretty thick. That will work out just fine. I like to have my paper square for this project that is up to you. It doesn't really make a difference if you have it square, or if you have a rectangle, it's just your preference. This is just what I like for this particular project. What you'll also need is a mat that goes underneath. You're painting and as concede here. When I was painting this painting, the pain went right off the painting onto the mat, and then Matt protected my table. The next thing that you will need is some clean water. It's always a good idea to have some clean water so you can rinse out your paintbrushes. Speaking of print paintbrushes, you will need two sizes of paint brush. You will need a larger flat brush if you have one, and you'll need a smaller paintbrush as well that the larger brush is for the background. And the smaller brush is for the branch that the birds air sitting on and the actual birds . You will also need, Ah, handy dandy pencil with an eraser, and you will need some paint. The paints required for this project are acrylic paints. If you'd like to use tempera paint, that's okay as well. You will need white, black and your choice of color. Do you need to use Brown? Absolutely not. You can use whatever color you'd like. If you'd like to use pink, that would be okay. If you'd like to use blue, that would be OK as well. I chose Brown just because I like the look of the brown. It looks a little bit more rustic, so you'll need white for sure, black, for sure, and then another color of your choice. You will also need a paper plate to use as your palate if you take a look here. This is my palate for this particular project, so it just really helps with cleanup. It's very easy to take care of. The last thing that you'll need is a handy dandy paper towel for spills and for clean up. So that's it. I'm excited about this about this project. It's pretty, pretty simple and pretty quick, and I look forward to seeing you in a minute. 2. Step 1: Paint Background: all right, a friends. So the first thing that you'll want to do is take some of your white paint your white acrylic paint and put a small amount onto your paper plate or your plate or your piece of paper that you're going to use for your palate and then you'll want to take your paintbrush . That's a little bit flat if you have one. If you don't, that's okay. It might take you a little bit more time to get this part finished. But if you have a paint brush like this that's a little bit flat, it will go a lot quicker. So what you're going to do is you're going to dip your paintbrush into your paint and you're just going to start painting up and down on your paper up and down on your paper, and you're going to want to do this pretty quickly, and you might be thinking to yourself, Wait a minute. I'm not seeing anything on the paper. While that's okay. We just need to cover our paper first with a layer of white acrylic paint, so I look like I might need a little bit more paint on here. That's OK, I like to put little bits of paint on my palette at a time, so I'm not wasteful. So as you can see, I'm going up and down with my paintbrush because I want to be systematic about it. I want to make sure that I get every single part of my paper covered. So I go up and down, up and down. And like I said, you could do this fairly quickly because we kind of wanted to blend in with our other color that we've chosen. So up and down, almost finished. Here we go. Don't just take a look at your paper. It's kind of hard to see because it's a white on white. What you want to do next is rinse your paintbrush out, patted a little bit dry. It doesn't have to be completely dry and wipe it on your paper towel, and then you want to use the color that you've chosen. I've chosen my brown. You can choose whatever color you like, as I've said before, and just put a small amount on your palate, and when you're finished getting your paint out when you're finished pouring it out, it's a good idea to put the caps back on these because they dry out very quickly. So let me get the cat back on this one. Okay? So what we're going to do now is we're going to dip a very small amount. We're going to dip our paintbrush into a very small amount of paint, and then we're going to just start painting. We're not going to paint over the whole entire piece of paper. You're just going to make a decision as to whether you'd like to paint on the left side or the right side, and we're going to kind of make a little frame of color around the edges. Let me show you what I mean. So what I'm going to do is I'm just going to go up and down lightly like this, and then I'm going to get a little bit darker here, and I'm going up and down again. So up and down and see how I hardly have any paint on here. I I don't have that much of paint at all, just around the edges, and this is getting a little bit lighter, and that's okay. Now, after almost all of the paint is off of my paintbrush. Then I'm going to go down the middle a little bit. See how that works. Very, very light Up and down. There we go. There we go. When we come back for the next step, we will be using our black, and we will make our branch and our birds. So what we want to do now is we want to let this dry a little bit. It doesn't have to be completely dry, but it has to be somewhat dry. Maybe wait five or 10 minutes for this base coat to dry, and then we'll come back and we will paint the branch and our birds, so see, in a minute. 3. Step 2: Paint Birds on a Branch: All right, friends, I'm back. So the base coat on my painting is pretty much dry. I have a little wet spot right here, but that's okay. What I'm going to do next is I'm going to take my pencil with my eraser and I'm going to draw out what I'm going to paint in black. So the first thing that you want to do is go about 2/3 down your paper or 1/3 up your paper . So this is about halfway a little bit lower than halfway. What you're going to do is you're going to make a line with your pencil. It's going to be pretty light. I think I'm going to go over that one more time so I could make sure that you can see that . There we go. I don't want it necessarily to be perfectly straight, because it's going to be a branch and branches. If you look at them, they're not perfectly straight, like a straight edge ruler. Okay, after that, what I'm going to dio in the lightest part of my painting. I'm going to make a couple of birds and I'm going to draw these birds and I'm going to fill them in with black paint so they will look like silhouettes. So I'm going to put a circle here, and then I'm going to put a circle here and you notice that this circle the second circles a little bit larger than this one. This actually looks like an oval, and that's okay, too, because birds are different shapes after we make our ovals or our circles. Then we're going to make a curve line coming down to the branch in a curve line, coming down to the branch and then on this side as well. We're going to do the same thing, curve lying down and curb lying down. So these air to buddy birds, their buddies. Now we're going to make their wings, their back wings coming out. So curve, line, curve lying and close up, and I'm going to have this guy's, um, wings go the other way. So curve, line, curve, line and close up. So basically think about this. If this was really life and this was a sunset and you were looking at the birds from behind , they would look black. So that's that's the look that we're going for right now. All right. So those air all sketched out. I have my branch and I have my two buddy birds. Alright, What I'm going to do next is I'm going to take some of my black acrylic paint and I'm going to put a very small amount on to my palette, and I want to make sure that I close that up. Now. What we're going to use is a brush that looks like this. It's pretty thin and it's pretty small. And the reason why is because we want our branch to be pretty skinny. And if I used to brush like this would be very difficult to get the branch to be pretty skinny, right? This is This is a good brush for working with a large areas, and this is a brush that works well with small areas. Indeed, more detailed work. All right, so what you'll want to do is you'll want to dip your paintbrush into your black paint and follow along with the line. And, as you can see, because the brushes smaller who might have to dip it a couple of times, no problem. You want your branch to look a little bit thicker just go over that same line a couple times where we go now. What you're going to do is you're going to fill in your shapes with your black paint. There we go. There's his head and here's his body, and it makes it a lot easier if you have a smaller paintbrush for this part. His back queen, his tail. I put a little bit of extra paint down there because I want his tail look a little bit fluffy working on my second bird. Now go to the body. Okay? And hiss tail. Oh, look at how cute that IHS. All right, now what you want to do is you want to make sure that you cleaning out your paintbrush because acrylic, if it gets hard on your paintbrush, it will ruin it. So you have to be very careful with that. And you want to make sure that you're painting dries before you hang it up or you give it to somebody that you love. I hope that you enjoyed this project and I look forward to seeing you next time