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How To Paint A Sunset With Acrylic Paints

Updated on February 17, 2011

How To Paint A Sunset With Acrylic Paints

Painting a sunset can be a very relaxing experience. Usually, the colors are harmonious and soothing to the eyes. Many options are available when painting. There are many reference photos available and tutorials that you can find online. You can find tutorials on youtube. Most of the tutorials follow similar instructions and techniques on painting a sunset. My favorite sites for tutorials are:

"How To Paint A Susnet"

"Sketchad Series: How To Paint A Sunset"


1) Start out by coming up with an idea of how you want your sunset to appear. You can reference a photo or use your imagination.

2) Apply large strokes to wet your canvas. You can use gesso, water, liquid white or oils. Use a big brush, preferably a 1.5" or a 3cm wide brush. Work back and forth until your canvas is completely wet. Apply layers of the transparent paint.

3) Outline some details that you want to include in your painting. You will want to come up with the horizon line. You might also leave space for an ocean scene that you would like to put on the bottom.

4) Gather the colors you will want to use in your painting. Some preferable colors are a yellow, orange, red, blue, purple, and white. You can also choose pink. You will want to make some dark shadows in the clouds with colors such as burnt umber, grey, and black. Make sure your painting is damp before you add your colors.

5) Start by painting from light to dark. You can choose to split your painting into three sections. You want to start at the bottom with light colors and work your way to the top with darker colors. Use yellows and oranges and then work your way up to the red and darker colors. Do not use blues if you are using yellows or oranges because blending the colors will end up with a green. If you find that the colors are too dark, you can always wipe them off with a tissue.

6) Blend the colors. Blending is the most important step in painting sunsets. Make sure you do a good job by making sure that the painting looks soft and harmonious.

7) Make sure you use the appropriate tone of colors. You do not want the painting to appear to dark or too light.

8) Dab in the shapes of the clouds with a fan brush. You can highlight the clouds with white or greyish color to make them stand out.

9) Finish by painting the background and foreground objects, such as a palm tree and ocean. You also have the option of adding some birds. It is a good idea to paint them with dark colors near the edge of your painting.

References: How To Paint A Sunset

Ehow: How To Paint A Sunset With Acrylic Paint

How To Paint A Sunset With Acrylic Paints

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    • profile image

      Asia McFarland 7 months ago

      good job :)

    • gamelover profile image

      Meskens Geert 5 years ago from Belgium

      Nice work