Acrylic Painting for Kids and Beginners: Learn How to Paint a Rainbow Swirly Tree | Em Winn | Skillshare

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Acrylic Painting for Kids and Beginners: Learn How to Paint a Rainbow Swirly Tree

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

    • 1.

      Rainbow Swirly Tree Introduction


    • 2.

      Step 1: Paint Rainbow Background


    • 3.

      Step 2: Paint Swirly Tree


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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 Rainbow SwirlyTree Acrylic Painting Project may be just what you are looking for! Designed with beginners in mind, this project is perfect for children ages 8-12 years old. 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 Rainbow Background
  • Step 2: Paint Tree onto Background

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 Rainbow SwirlyTree Acrylic 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. Rainbow Swirly Tree Introduction: Hey, friends. How are you? I hope you're having a good day today. I'm excited about presenting this next lesson to you. This is an example that I created the other day of what we will be making today. So I wanted to just show it to you. So you know what to expect. We have a little I will here in a tree with a really cool background. 2. Step 1: Paint Rainbow Background: so I wanted to go over the supplies and materials that you will need for this lessons. You Congar the everything up and be ready to go. The first thing that you will need is a piece of paper said This is a piece of acrylic paper holds acrylic paint very, very well. That's the type of paint that we will be using for this project. It's a thick paper, and it's a little bit texture, which means I have some little bumps in it. If you do not have acrylic paper, that's OK. You can just use any thick paper. You will also need some acrylic paint, so acrylic paint as a little bit thicker than water color. It's made out of different stuff. So if you have various colors like I do, just pull them all out, poll all of your colors out that you have, and then you could make a decision on the colors that you'd like to use for this project. So these are the These are the colors that I am going to use along with White and um, yeah, you can use any colors that you want, though actually you will need black that That's the number one color that you will need. And let me tell you why. Because if you take a look at our example, you will see that the tree and the owl are black and it looks really cool against the bright sky. So just pull out your acrylic paints and we're not going to use all of them right now. We're going to save the black for later, but we will get started in just a moment. So let me put all of these back, and then I'm going to show you the other materials that we will need. We will need a pencil so we can draw our tree after week, get our background together, we will need a large paint brush, so that's important to have. It's It's much easier to work with, Ah, large paint brush when you are doing the background. When you're doing the circular background, it's easier to use a large paint brush. You can use a small one, but it will just take you a little bit more time. You will also need a small paintbrush. It's easier to paint the tree and the owl if you have a smaller paintbrush, because if you notice up here, this area kids a little bit tight and small. So if you have a really big papers like this, it's really hard to paint really small. So if you have it, if you have a large one in a small one that will work out perfectly, you'll also need some paper towels. They come in real handy when we're using this acrylic paint for this particular project. We're not going to use a lot of water. But what I like to do is have a couple of water available in a in a small bowl, and what we can do with that is we can rinse our brush, and then with her paper towel, we can dry our brush. So the paper tells always come in handy when you are doing art. The last thing that we will need is a paper plate, so I have a little tiny paper plate here. I usually is a bigger one, and I might go get 1 1000 just a moment, and that's about it. So let's get started. All right, a friend. So if you take a look at our picture here, you can see some yellow, some white orange peak purple, lots of different colors going on here. As I said before, if you don't have all of these colors, that's okay. Just do the best that you can with what you have. It works out really well. If your moon or your son in this case, I feel like it's a moon can be kind of a brighter color, so yellow, or how white. And then from there you can spread out with all of the different colors, just the weight you want it. So what we're going to do is put that aside for right now. And here's my big paper plate, and I'm just going to start shaking up my paints and then putting a little bit of each paint on my paper plate. I like to use paper plates because we have, um, the option of tossing them when they're finished. When we're finished, it's It's very easy cleanup when I'm doing a lot of different projects. If you have a palette that you like to use, however, that's a good way to go, because you can, um, use a less. You can use less resource is, and that's important to think about as well. So I pouring out my paint colors and that you don't need a huge amount of paint. I like to start with a smaller amount of pain to begin with. And let me tell you why. Because you could always pour more out. But it's harder to put the paint back, so you want to start out with a small amount. So we're going to use all of the colors. Look how pretty that looks. Look at how pretty my my palette looks. We're going to use all the colors, including White. We're not going to use the black yet, however, in the reason why is because we are going to use that after these colors have dried. So the first thing that I'm going to do is I'm going to take my large paint brush, and I am going to dip it in the yellow because I want my moon to be yellow. I'm going to start it up to the right a little bit. Not at the very top, but just kind of like right here. And I'm not going to be super careful about it. But I'm just going to make a circle with my paintbrush. See how I'm doing that relatively quickly Now, I am a fast painter, so if you want to go a little bit more slowly, no problem. You can do that now, on the outside of my yellow And I am not going to rinse out my brush. I'm going to dip it into the white and make a ring around my yellow so it gets a little bit lighter and I blended in. See how I did that. Now I'm going to move on to my orange and I'm going to make a ring around that white with the orange. Now, as you can see, I'm going to start falling off the edge of the paper, and that's a okay, that's what I want. That's the look that I want. And I'm kind of blending the colors into each other. See how the ring is around the moon. Okay, so I have my orange down Now I think I'm going to move to my paint, going to move to my pink all the way around. Do you notice how I'm going all the way off my paper now? That's okay. The thing about it is however, that you want to make sure that you have something, a piece of paper or something underneath your paper. Do you see how I have my black paper hair? The reason why we have that is because I know that I want to just be free to go off my paper without making a huge mess. You have to be kind of careful with these acrylic paints because they can get a little bit on the messy side. How does that look? So far, I really, really like it. Now I'm going to start with my purple. And as you can see, I'm just going around and around in a circular motion. And I if you look here, you can see a little bit of yellow because I did not rinse my brush out. I'm not going to be doing that very frequently with this project. And then I blend them in. See how I did that? I just blended them in. Okay, Next, I think I'm going to use the blue. Wow, I love that color blue. It's called Pool Blue. Well, blue. All right, I see that it's mixing with the yellow a little bit to create green. Okay, Speaking of green, I am going to use I'm gonna put some a little bit more blue. I want to be is green next. I love Green. Green is actually my favorite color. Just in case you wanted to know what My favorite color is Definitely green. Green kind of reminds me of the earth. I love the earth. Okay. What do you think now? Have I used all my colors? I think I have. I've used all my colors. So what I'm going to do now as I'm going to go back to yellow, go back to yellow. That's just what I feel like doing with art. You could just do what you want to dio. That's really important to know. I'm gonna use a little bit of white and then I'm going to use orange, and I think my paper will be pretty much filled up, my man. Okay. Wow, take a look at that. What do you speak? So what you can do now is you can take a look at this picture. This is the one that I created a few days ago as an example. And then take a look at this one so I really like the way that this looks. It's a little bit more blended than this one, but I like them both a lot. Are they exactly the same? Now they're not. But even though I'm the same artists that have that has created both of these, my artwork is not going to look exactly the same. And that's really a wonderful thing about art. So I'm excited about it. What I'm going to do now isn't going to allow this to dry. I want it to be nice and dry before I create my owl in a tree. So I am going to let it sit for about an hour. Some people like to put it out in the sun shines, and people like to blow with a blow dryer to get it dry a little bit faster. I'm just going to let it sit here, and I will be back. Does that sound good? Okay, so I'll see in a minute by 3. Step 2: Paint Swirly Tree: Okay, friends, I am back. My painting background is completely dry. That's what you want. You want to make sure that it's completely dry before you start this next step. So let me show you my example that I created the other day and let's talk about this for a moment. So what we have is a tree here. The tree trunk is wider than the actual branches, so you'll want to make sure that it starts out kind of fat here at the bottom. And as it goes up, it gets skinnier and skinnier. Now this particular tree has a lot of curl. So if you take a look at these branches there pretty curly, I usually don't see like trees like this in real life. Maybe there are some out there there. It looks pretty cool, but it's more of like a fantasy tree. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to take my handed Andy pencil with a eraser on it, and I am going to draw out just a really quick, rough draft of my tree. Now the neat thing about acrylic paint is if you draw on it with the pencil really lightly you can erase it. So what you can do well, what you're welcome to Dio. If you want to is you can sketch out your tree on your background and then you can start painting. Some people just want to go ahead and paint, and that's fine as well. So what you would dio is you would take some of your black acrylic paint, put it on your paper plate and just start painting if that's what you'd like to dio. But I'm going to show you how to sketch out a tree. So I'm going to start here at the bottom, kind of in the middle of the paper, and I'm going to come up and come up now I'm going to come out and I I'm going to start with some curlicues and what I like about this is I can remember that I might want to change my mind, and I might want to put a curlicue in a different spot, and that's OK. It'll all work out as you will be able to see. So this one, this branch right here is going to have to it to curlicues coming out from it. This one right here. I'm going to put a big one up here and then I'll put one right here and maybe even one right here. So let's see how that works out. Have that one rinsing right now. So let's put some black paint on my paper, and I'm going to start at the bottom, and then I'm going to work my way at so because my because my paint print papers is a little bit smaller, it requires more dips. I'm gonna have to put a whole bunch of dips into the paint. And basically what I'm going to do is I'm just going to start at the bottom with my black and I'm just going to paint on up, kind of using my pencil lines as my guides. Okay, so I have my paper taped down, and sometimes I like to move my paper around. I like to twist it and turn it. So if you'd like to do that, be my guest. I'm going to speed up this this video so that you can watch me speed paint and you can either do your own painting at the same time or you can watch me. It is up to you. Do you see how I go over the paint one time? I'm sorry. I go over the pencil line one time, and then I go over it again. So I make sure that I have really good coverage with my paint. Okay, I'm going to be working on this, and I'll see you in just a minute. All right, Friends, I'm back. What do you think? I pretty much love it. I think it's really, really cool. So I wanted to point out a couple of things. I have a lot of curlicues going on here. I want you to keep in mind that the trunk is the fattest part. And then as each branch goes off the trump, it's the fattest at the point where it leaves the trunk, and then it gets skinnier and skinnier. Okay, that's how it a tree normally works. See, on this branch right here, it starts up kind of that, and it gets skinnier and skinnier. Now, what I need to do is I need to figure out where I want to put my Abol, and I think I want to put him right here. So the way that I make an owl. It's very, very simple. I just make a curved line, a little V and a curved line, and then I feel him in who he's a foul isn't. He's a fat one. Now, let me let me show you a little trick. I want to make his eyes nice and big and round. So what I do? It's kind of crazy, but I take the tip off the paint brush that I was using. So this is the part with the brush part, And then this is the tip. I dipped out in the white and it makes a really nice circle. Look at that. So professional like that. Okay, then what I do with my handy dandy paper towel is I wipe off that white and then I dip it in the black just like that. Now, this kind of works better when this white paint is dry. But I'm going to try it right now. It worked. See that? How I did that, that one. Maybe not so much. It might need to be a little bit drier. Try one more time. Yes. Alrighty. Me. Rinse that off and then put this in here. Now let me show you one more thing. So this is the one that I just created right now with you friends. And this is the one that I created the other day in preparation for this lesson. So as you can see this one and this one, they they look different from one another. Don't they kind of tell the same project? But your project will look totally different. Ah, from mine. And if you have brothers or sisters or classmates that you're working with, theirs will look different as well. That's the really meeting and the cool thing about art. So take care. Hope you liked it by