Simple yet stunning silhouette painting

December 19, 2009 at 9:05 pm | Posted in crafts, Handmade Christmas | 1 Comment
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Complete I love silhouettes!  This painting, which I gave my husband for Christmas, made a simple, yet stunning gift.   If you can cut and trace, you can easily make a similar painting yourself.  You will need:

A blank canvas (mine was 10×13 and cost $1.28)
2-3 contrasting colors of acrylic paint ($0.58 each)
Pencil, scissors, and paintbrushes
A silhouette photograph

I love how blue and white swirl together to make a sky like background, so I squirted the two colors onto a yogurt lid and blended them on the canvas until I liked it.  You can blend whatever colors you like, or just paint the canvas a solid color.  Let the paint dry thoroughly before tracing onto it.  (I found my canvas was dry enough in about an hour.)

I looked through our wedding photos to find an appropriate image. has some great free images if you can’t find one of your own.

You will want to print out the picture and then cut out the silhouette to trace.  You can re-size the image before printing if needed – I like to use Word since it is so quick, but there are many programs that will work.  Cut out the image with sharp scissors or a craft knife, paying careful attention to the details.  Position and trace your image onto the canvas.

Trace figures I used a fine paintbrush to outline the image in my contrasting color – be careful to cover all of the pencil lead with paint.  Use a larger brush and fill in the image with an nice even layer of paint.  You may need to let it dry and go over it again with a second coat of paint depending on how much the colors contrast.

Fill in body

After I made a few of these, I played around with adding a few simple details, like another color or two, such as the light inside of the lighthouse painting below.

Let your painting dry, and enjoy!  The variations on this simple project are endless, and this is an amazing gift for about $3 and only a few hours of effort.  And it makes an even nicer gift if you frame it – I find high quality frames for $3-5 at Big Lots all the time.


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