Wednesday, May 25, 2011

How To: Paint Diva Roses

Painting these roses are so stinkin' easy and fool-proof that it's practically immoral.

Supplies: Acrylic paint and some paint brushes, pretty basic and pretty simple.

Art brushes: one flat brush to paint the circular roses, one round brush for the details and leaves.

  • Flowers: two contrasting carnation pinks, one light and one medium.
  • Leaves: two contrasting greens, lime is perfect for the lighter of the two and a medium green for the darker. Think tropical.
  • Dots: White.
My plastic lid fancy pants palette is ready to go.  Ignore the metallic gold, aqua and black from a previous painting binge.  Believe it or not, this IS a clean palette for me.  Normally I have ten or more thick layers of paint crusted on.

Basecoat: I'm using soft blue for this tute, but black or white/ivory are fab and I'm dying to try a yellow-gold background soon.
Basecoat your item and let it dry. Besides the pot and wood hearts, I've also considered a bench, stool, flat picture frame, wooden box, garden art, pretty much anything flat that can be painted. You're limited only by your imagination! My brain is creating signs for a Garden Party, an arrow to the Rose Garden,  a garden quote for my jardin and a box for the TV remotes.
Grab your flat brush and some white paint, paint large and small circles randomly. Can you tell I use a pivot technique? So quick to just spin my brush around. Voila!
Let'em dry. (Why white? I always-always-always paint white first when I intend to use pink or red which cover notoriously poorly. You'll get a truer pink or red without painting multiple coats.)

Fill in between the circles with white elongated-almond shapes, some tilted one way, some tilted the other, some almost horizontal. Try to keep them random.

Using your flat brush again (I'm assuming you washed out the white paint), pivot-paint over your white circles in light pink. Don't worry if you still see some white at the edges or if you slop some pink outside the white. It'll look great, you'll see!

Pay no attention to those darker pink circles.  Pretend they are light pink too. Please?

Now use the round brush and lime green to turn the white almonds into leaves. Paint more than half the white shape lighter.  Then use the medium green to paint crescent-moon shapes on the other side.  You should have a definite bend in your leaf.  I usually (but not always) have my lighter green on top.

And yes, I did accidentally touch some wet green paint as I spun the pot around.  It happens.  No prob.
Time for the round brush and darker pink to bring your roses to life. Think sixes and nines and spirals for the centers and fill in with some curved commas around the edges.  It's fine if your lines waver, change from thick to thin or become wispy.  In fact, it's good if they do that!

You can add white polka dots and call it done at this point OR you could darken your green with a tad of black and add some definition to the edge of the green crescent like I did on the right there.

I used this terra cotta pot as an opportunity to play around a bit.  My inspiration piece had large light pink and small dark pink roses with black accents, so I experimented with both red and purple accents for my pastel version of the diva roses with limited success (at least for me, you might love'em).  My conclusion?  Keep all the roses light pink with darker rosy spirals (that's why I told you to ignore those darker pink circles earlier).

Here are three other colorways for the diva roses :
Black background with both light and dark pink roses and white dots.  Wretched photo, I know, so hard to see the colors in the glare in the morning sun.  Do not despair, my lambs, the mug photos below are filled with details enough to delight any heart.
And the fabulous white diva mug itself in with black dots and detailing.  See how yellow-green the leaves are compared to the pastel ones below?
Pastel blue like my How-To flower pot, only with black lining the leaf centers and detailing the roses.

Have fun painting,


  1. love the pot. so bright and cheery. now what are you going to plant in it?

  2. This is cool! I am going to try it. Thanks!

  3. Cynthia--I don't know what'll go in my little flower pot, but I've been eying three large pots that usually look rather blah even with flowers in them all summer. The little one was a test run.

  4. I love your diva roses, I am going to book mark this, the best compliment a blogger can get!! Thank you!