Paint Your Numbers

How to Paint Using Paint by Numbers

Can Paint by Numbers Teach You How to Paint?

Paint by numbers can teach you how to paint because it teaches color theory. It helps beginners to learn basic painting skills and sharpen their art skills. You also learn how to master your brush grip and different brushing techniques.

Some people greatly appreciate art but don't know where to begin. Others want to practice it for fun and mental relief. One way to get started is by using the paint-by-numbers approach. 

Unfortunately, this numbering system has often been ridiculed as formulaic, simplistic, and uncreative. But it works for beginner artists and helps people improve their artistic skills.

In this article, you will learn what a number painting is and if it's helpful for beginners. You will also see how painting by numbers can help you enhance your skills. 

Let's dive in. 

What is number painting?

Paint by numbers is a picture with several divisions marked with a number matching a particular color. The numbers are each engraved on distinctive paint pods. As you paint and fill out each division, you will watch your painting come to life, revealing a masterpiece.

paint by numbers

Paint with numbers was invented in the 1950s by Dan Robbins, who was to find a creative way to increase sales in his company, Palmer Show Card Paint, and came up with the first paint-by-numbers kit for the task.

Dan drew inspiration for the kit from Leonardo Da Vinci, who taught his apprentice how to paint through number painting. 

One of his first number paintings was a table setting which didn't gain popularity. As such, he switched to landscapes, animals, and portraits, which were more accessible.

Currently, millions of kids and adults use DIY Paint by numbers. The creative venture is more accessible and comes in a complete kit of painting equipment and a canvas. 

Paint by numbers is very common and recognized as an art therapy activity since it soothes and relaxes the mind.  

What does a Painting by Numbers kit include?


Paint by numbers kits have the following items

  • Rolled canvas
  • Colors needed to complete the picture
  • Paintbrushes
  • A picture that shows the results of the painting

    paint by numbers kit

    The acrylic paints come as ready-to-paint. It is a 'no-mic' kit meaning the paints come premixed and ready for use. The paint quality is excellent since it is thick and doesn't drip or splash on the canvas. 

    Is number painting useful for beginners?

    Paint by numbers helps beginner artists learn basic painting skills and sharpen their art skills. Whether you are an intermediate or beginner, custom paint by numbers or printed paint by numbers can improve your creative art skills at any age.

    One of the best things about paint by numbers is that you don't need to be super skilled. Even young artists like using the kit for fun and to improve their art skills.

    If you want to try paint by numbers, the kit is easy to use. The outlines of the image are visible, and the divisions of the image are blank for you to color. The kit has different acrylic paints with specific numbers to guide you on how to paint.

    All you need to do with these is follow the color code and numbers in the different sections of the image. 

    For example, you can paint colors methodically, which helps you complete section by section. Or, you can paint one color in all the sections with the same number on the canvas.

    How can paint by numbers help you develop your painting skills?

    Paint by numbers helps you understand the chiaroscuro concept and gain creative control. It also helps you build your self-confidence in painting, simplifies the painting process, teaches color theory, and improves your brushwork.

    Let's look at each way number painting helps you enhance your skills:

    It helps you understand the light and dark concept

    Art students must learn the light and dark values that make up a picture. Paint by numbers divides the image systematically to emphasize the light and dark paint areas making great study equipment.

    It helps learn chiaroscuro, which uses dark and light to create a three-dimensional illusion on flat surfaces. On the other hand, it describes portraits with extreme contrast between dark and light.

    Artists recommend starting with the lightest color and working in color groups when making number paintings. 

    It helps gain creative control

    Painting by numbers helps stimulate the brain's right hemisphere involved with creativity. It is a creative outlet that enables you to create a finished painting without artistic talent. 

    The more you stimulate the brain, the more you want to experiment with different paint brush strokes and new colors. 

    As such, your creative control helps you gain the confidence to start working on a blank page.

    It helps build your confidence

    One key to being a successful artist is confidence. 

    As a beginner, painting or creating art can be daunting since you have self-doubt and high expectations. The best place to start is using paint by number crafts. You can start with an easy kit and then move to a more complex one as you progress.

    It helps improve your skills with time and improves your growth process as you paint each numbered section. As you practice, you'll feel increasingly better for creating something out of a blank canvas.  

    It encourages you to try more colors, brushes, and painting tricks 

    A person who isn't interested in painting looks at colors as basic things without processing their impact or relationship with each other. 

    Paint by numbers teaches students that colors work together. Studying the effects of placing colors next to each other is essential. 

    Look at different ways paint by numbers encourages you to try painting tricks:

    It simplifies the painting process

    Paint by numbers provides all materials at an affordable price. They also come ready to use, so you can start your process without mixing colors. 

    You also don't need to apply any primer or gesso. This is useful for beginner artists who find painting equipment expensive or too complicated with the materials out there.

    It teaches color theory

    Paint by numbers shows a person how colors communicate with each other.  Color theory is one of the most fundament areas of painting.

    Color theory is the art and science of using color. It shows how humans understand color and the visual effects of how colors match, contrast, or mix. This is how you breathe life into your image. 

    Each number on the canvas from paint by numbers kits shows you perspective shadows and motion.

    It improves your brushwork

    Brush control can be challenging and takes time and practice. You also need to know the specific use and different uses for different brushes.

    Paint by numbers starts with basic brushes. You learn how to master your grip and different brushing techniques. The minor divisions in the canvas teach you how to be precise and gain control over the brushes.

    Tips for successful painting by numbers

    To succeed in painting by numbers, blend your painting, use a solid frame, and double-check your colors. You can also invest in quality kits, thin the paint with water, or add a personal touch by painting different colors.

    Let’s look at painting by numbers tips to succeed in detail:

    Invest in a quality paint by number set 

    You must purchase the best painting set to make your painting look better. High-quality sets set you apart and give you the best results. 

    Our paint by numbers kits have quality brushes, paint, and canvas. You only need to choose your favorite picture and order a kit to get a paint by number custom photo to improve your skills.

    Add extra coats

    If specific parts of your image look pale, you can add extra layers to make the painting look smoother and bolder. Two thick layers will be enough, but you can do more to increase vividness.

    Blend your painting

    Paint by numbers makes you block colors with sharp edges. To make your painting look more natural, always blend your colors. 

    Swiping the brush back and forth against the edge where colors meet will make your image look seamless. 

    Also, ensure to blend with wet paint and blend places that make sense, such as the sky, ocean, or landscape.

    Use a solid frame for the canvas

    Framing your canvas before you start makes your process more realistic. Wet acrylic paint makes the canvas warp. With a solid wooden frame, you can avoid this from happening.

    Thin your acrylic paint with water

    Acrylic paints are water-soluble. If the acrylic is too thick, you can thin it with water to make more paint. Adding water also makes the paint thinner, which can form great effects. 

    For instance, the lighter reflections of flowers, plants, and leaves come out best with the transparency of thin acrylic paint. But before applying the watered-down paints on your canvas, test it on paper to test the consistency. 

    Check the colors twice 

    It is important to double-check if you are using the correct colors. Painting is a relaxing exercise that can take your mind into a trance. You can go ahead and relax and paint but make sure to check your paints before painting. 

    Feel free to add your own style

    The game's rules are to paint the canvas according to the number. But you can break the rules if you feel confident. Also, remember art is a form of expression. There's no right or wrong way of expression. So let your imagination run wild and use different colors for different numbers. 

    Create your paint by numbers custom photo now!

    Paint with numbers is an approach that helps aspiring artists master their skills. It increases your confidence, enables you to master brush control, and teaches you about color theory. 

    Do you want to start using number paintings? 

    At Paint Your Numbers, we help you turn your pictures into the best paint art. 

    Our custom paint by numbers kit features a convenient way to create immaculate custom oil paintings. We also understand that DIY Paint by numbers canvas can be a fun activity that is satisfying and therapeutic. 

    Choose a photo and order your paint your numbers kit now!