Painting Crosses – Tutorial

Whimsical Cross

In my blog post about the Painting Class, I mentioned my lack of talent in the area of painting, except for walls.  Really love to paint walls – gives you time to think.  Like when you’re pulling weeds.  Mindless work for time to ponder.

In our little 3-hour class, my friend and I started with a blank canvas.  In this tutorial, I’m using an old cabinet door.  Works the same.  The door was stained originally, but I sanded it and spray-painted it black.

You’ll notice my background instructional pictures are already painted the background of the finished one.  I didn’t take step-by-step photos, so I went back and repainted so I could get those shots.  So, don’t worry.  If we mess anything up, just paint over it!  Just like walls – if you hate the color, paint it again.  🙂  Love that, y’all.

For the background, use regular craft paint, 3-4 colors.  I use pearlized for accent, but the others are flat.  Squirt about a half-dollar-size blob of each on a paper plate, right beside each other, running into each other.  Notice I reuse my plates after they’re dry.  So classy.  But cheap.

Craft Paint on Paper Plate

Step 1:  Use a 1-1/2 inch flat art brush (Wal-Mart sells them) and lay the brush along the joining of 2 colors to load the brush.

Loaded Brush

Place the loaded brush in the middle of your canvas and run to one end.

Beginning Paint

Then return up the entire canvas to spread paint to the other end.

First Paint Run

Step 2:  Load brush with the other section of 2 colors running together on your plate.  Lay your loaded brush beside the first “run” and repeat.

Second Paint Run

Continue all across the canvas, blending as you go.  Don’t be all precise about this, y’all.  It’s whimsical, remember?

Blending Paint

See how the striped effect goes away as you blend?  Be quick, ’cause the paint dries quickly!  When you have another color for accent to add, simply swipe quick stripes randomly and blend some more.

Accent Paint

Well, that one was a little much!  Blob!  No problem, just run your brush over it several times, maybe adding a little black on your brush edge, and it’s wonderful.

Background Complete

Wish I had taken step-by-step pics of the Lollipops I painted.  That background was more fun because of the colors, y’all.

Three Lollipops

This one today is a little depressing with black and browns, but I wanted a rustic “woody” look.  Besides, it’s rainy and dreary outside.  Sort of changes your mood.

Onward – painted crosses I promised.  Painted crosses you’ll get!

After background is dry, gather all the many colors you want in your crosses.  You’ll also need a skinny paintbrush with long bristles – the longer the better, ’cause it holds more paint.  I had one longer somewhere – couldn’t find it.  Oh, well, I’m in the Land of Making Do, remember?  I’ll make do with this one.

Paint and Brush

I know you love my storage box!  Shoe box recycle – so “green” – so that’s classy, right?

Here’s a tip:  Rather than squirting out little bits of paint all over your paper plate (these we don’t mix, y’all), I just shake, remove cap, and paint right out of the cap.  Of course, I wipe my brush really well between colors.

Step 1:  Paint a circle (any color) just north of the center.  Eye-ball it, y’all.  Mine was a little in the snowy region (too far north), but I don’t mind, if you don’t.  Paint 4 ovals coming off that circle, as I did here, with a longer oval at the bottom.

Beginning Cross

See how crooked I paint?  I already added some more paint to the left, trying to even it out.  No problem.  You’ll see – it won’t matter.

Step 2:  Continue adding a few loops to even out your cross.  See how it worked?  It’s like magic!

Even Out Cross

Step 3:  Select another color, and paint a few loops again, close to the first ones.  A little more shaping with the colors helps even it out.  Repeat with each color.  Use quick, curving, light strokes.  Remember – whimsical, not precision!  Should look like lots of skinny ribbons.

Adding Colors

If one color gets too prominent, add others.  If one color “disappears”, paint more loops with it.  See how easy this is?

I also added a little of that bronze pearlized paint from the background accent.  The light picks it up and makes it shimmer.

See the curly-thingy at the bottom?  Let’s do that now.

Step 4:  Pick a favorite color, and at the ends of each cross loop, make a “fish” sign, then curl the ends around.  I had flat fish on the sides and top, ’cause I didn’t leave myself much room there.  My cabinet door was rather long and thin.  It’s OK – I don’t mind, if you don’t.

God gives us painting classes, persuasive friends, and encouraging parents for a reason, y’all.  He designed us to be resourceful and try new things.

When God created the whole world, just think…if He’d blocked his creativity before He got to us, we wouldn’t be here!  So, let’s unleash our creativity…paint some crosses – or lollipops – or whatever your creative mind comes up with.  You know, to help fill your home with love, comfort, and harmony…

I’ve loved having you join me for this tutorial!  I hope to be hearing from you about your painted creations!  Be sure to leave me a comment, or email me some pictures by using my “contact” page!