When you think about freehand painting do you say “OMG — I CAN’T!!!” Me too! I’m awful at freehand painting, but today I’m going to show you that YOU CAN be a freehand painter. Well, actually I’m going to show you how you can look like a freehand painter. I’m sharing the simple trick I use to make me look like a freehand painting pro!
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I love painting… walls. I can cut around windows, door and floor trim without using painter’s tape! But freehand painting is another story. I just… can’t. I mean I can, but about the best I can muster up is a pathetic looking stick figure.
I’m so jealous of people who can paint freehand. My aunts are amazingly talented freehand painters. One aunt paints faux finishes like wood grain and marble you would swear are the real deal. Two of my other aunts paint highly detailed freehand scenes on everything from glass ornaments to upcycled chair seats.
It seems I inherited the creativity gene, but not the aptitude to paint. Sure I can build furniture projects and home decor pieces, but painting freehand is not in my wheelhouse. I want to be a freehand painter and I want to paint more than a stick figure.
The closest I get to freehand painting is paint-by-number. For me, paint-by-number is just like painting a wall. I’m pretty good at painting within the lines. Wait. A. Minute. Maybe I could use the paint-by-number idea to fake a freehand painted look on my DIY projects! YES I CAN!
I took the paint-by-number idea and applied it to my projects. First I tried the technique on my Tiki Mask Planters, then on my Flower Power Bus Planters. The results? It looks freehand painted to me!
I also used the paint-by-number freehand painting technique on my Vintage Camper Napkin Holders. By the way, how adorable are these things?! This freehand painting technique is sooo easy! If you can paint-by-number, then without a doubt, you can do this technique!
My paint-by-number technique works best on wood projects. First you’ll need to find a line drawing or picture you want to paint on your wood project. (Check out google images if you need some inspiration.) You could even use your computer to print a few words or a phrase. Then you’ll use a ball point pen to trace the drawing or picture on the wood. The ball point of the pen leaves an indent in wood. The indent becomes the lines of the paint-by-number system. Then you just paint within the lines. SOOO EASY! C’mon I’ll show you step-by-step how to do it!
How to Look Like a Freehand Painting Pro
Step 1. Use painter’s tape to temporarily attach the line drawing, picture, words or phrase you want to paint on your wood project.
Step 2. Trace the image with a ball point pen onto the wood.
The pen leaves a slight depression in the wood.
Step 3. Getting the freehand painted look is as easy as painting in between the lines. It’s almost like paint by number! And it doesn’t have to look perfect, remember, we’re aiming for a freehand painted look.
It’s difficult to cover a dark color with a light color, so it’s best to apply light colors first and then follow with darker colors.
I wanted the body moulding to be straight on the Flower Power Bus Planter, so I used a little painter’s tape.
This freehand painting technique is sooo easy! If you can paint-by-number, then without a doubt, you can do this technique! What project would you use this freehand painting technique for?