September 11, 2021

We created this guide to help you get the most out of your new custom paint by numbers kit. Get your kit and start creating your own masterpiece.

You can bookmark this guide and come back to it, or send it to the person that will receive the kit if you ordered it as a gift.

1. Prepare the linen canvas

A completely flat canvas without wrinkles is essential for the best possible results. All of our custom paint by numbers kits are printed on a linen canvas, so it is common to have some slight wrinkles when unboxed. 

We recommend you carefully moisten your canvas with a damp cloth and iron or steam it at a low temperature (linen mode) to smooth the entire surface.

2. Find a place with the right lighting

Natural light is the best when it comes to painting. Period. But we know that sometimes natural light might not be available, especially if you decide to work on your paint by numbers project indoors.

In that case, try to find a place at home with a white and even light. By this, we mean light that won’t generate shadows beneath your hand or body. The correct lighting will also help you see the numbers and outlines clearly. 

Ideal light sources would be:

  • Natural light
  • Direct even and white light (lamps installed on the ceiling)
  • Or you may also use a pedestal lamp, that you can always move and set up as preferred to illuminate the area that you exactly want.

You can find an artist pedestal LED lamp on our site too, under the accessories section.

3. Fix the canvas on a table

We recommend you to fix your canvas on a table or a smooth surface. By fixing the canvas on top of the surface where you’ll be working on, you can prevent it from sliding or rolling when painting.

If you will be working outdoors instead, you can consider getting a portable tabletop easel along with your framed paint by numbers kit.

Placing the painting by numbers canvas on a table

4. Create your own personal workspace

Before starting to paint your custom paint by numbers canvas, prepare your personal workspace with the following:

  • A place to arrange your paint pots
  • A recipient to clean and keep your paint brushes wet
  • Some tissues to dry your paint brushes
  • Additionally, you can use a comfortable cushioned seat, prepare some relaxing background music and even use pleasant humidifier to ensure a complete artistic experience.

In general, we recommend a pleasant workspace where you can not only feel completely comfortable and relaxed, but also have all your tools at hand.

Keep in mind that painting is a way to connect with your emotions and capture them on a canvas.

By having your own personal space, you’ll be able to better connect with your thoughts and memories, be at peace and calm, relax and focus on your project.

How to prepare your personal workspace to start painting by numbers

5. Extra tip for the numbered sections

Your personalized paint by numbers kit comes with a custom-made numbered canvas. Each section is delimited by an outline, and inside each of them there is a printed number.

Especially for lighter colors, it is possible that the outline and numbers will still be slightly visible after applying a first layer of color.

To prevent this from happening, we recommend pre-painting these guides with a white primer or white eyeliner.

In addition, you can also apply more than one paint coat to your paint by numbers kit to enhance the brightness and contrast of the colors. This will ultimately make your kit look much more professional and colors will be right on spot. 

If you happen to have covered a number guide and you are not sure of the paint color you were supposed to use on that section, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us asking for the Digital Version of your paint by numbers canvas.

6. Paint in order and by colors

One technique that even the most professional painters use is to work in order and by color. A common “rule” when engaging in oil painting is to paint dark to light.

Even though you should not take this as a painting rule that applies in every single case, it might allow you to achieve better results if you are just starting with painting.

How to paint a personalized paint by numbers canvas

7. Start with a single coat applied evenly.

Remember to cover the number that you will no longer need if you are going to apply a second coat in a certain section, since you will have the color to guide you. 

Make sure that the first coat is completely dry so that the paint does not run to areas that you do not want color.

Don’t load the paintbrush too much, wring out the excess, so that you only use the exact amount of paint you need. For a more realistic effect, you can blur the edges of each section.

As soon as you finish with one color, wash and dry the paintbrush before starting with another color. By doing this, you will avoid staining your canvas accidentally with a mixture of paints that can spoil your artwork.

How to paint by numbers

8. Use creative painting techniques and ideas

Our custom paint by numbers kits come with numbered colors that match the labels (numbers) placed on the canvas. This will easily allow you to apply the right paint to corresponding areas to paint the image correctly.

However, if you want to change the tones to enhance the painting and make it more realistic, you can mix and blend colors.

Additionally, you can use other tools aside from brushes:

  • Q-tips for placing accents on leaves
  • Scrapers to create fine and straight lines
  • Dabbing cotton to highlight the layers of clouds.

These techniques are not complicated and can be done even by a first-time painter or one with no painting experience whatsoever.

9. Take your time

Although it is good that you set yourself personal challenges, in the case of painting a custom-made canvas we highly advise you to take the necessary time to enjoy the experience.

There is no need to rush the process.

From our customers we know that a 15 x 19 inches personalized paint by numbers kit, would take on average one or two weeks to finish depending on the time you spend on it.

Work your painting with love and dedication so the result is exactly what you imagined.

10. Take notes - Leave your mark

There is a process of ideas and a journey of introspection in every single artistic form.

We have heard from some of our customers how satisfying it is to take down some notes in a journal throughout the painting process.

It is so special to share these thoughts, memories, ideas later with your loved ones, friends and family.

Kind of a brief ceremony once you are done with your custom paint by numbers kit, explaining everything that came along your mind while painting.

Once you have finished, make sure to leave your mark. Your signature, handprint or a postal card signed with the date and a short thought about the painting will ensure the memory perdures in time.