As a child, I used to love doing paint by numbers projects. I remember one in particular, a cartoon panda bear, that I painted for my dad as a gift, and to this day it hangs in his basement workshop. What I didn’t realize until recently, though, is that the paint by numbers fun isn’t just for kids anymore. You can get all kinds of pictures from Winnie’s Picks; everything from animals and flowers, to detailed landscapes that are outlined and numbered on canvas and just waiting for artists of all ages to add the paint. I had the opportunity to try it out by choosing to receive an existing design or having a custom one created, so I decided to send in our family photo from this past Easter.
You’ll notice that both boys are wearing hats thanks to an unfortunate quarantine haircut situation… Anyway, I sent the photo to the folks at Winnie’s Picks, and a few weeks later a tube arrived containing everything I needed to complete my masterpiece: a printed canvas, four paintbrushes, and 36 small labeled tubs of acrylic paint. There was also a paper guide that matched the canvas in case I needed an additional reference to help me determine what colors went where.
I taped the canvas onto a table in my craft room where I have the best lighting and got to work. I started in the top left corner with the first color and did my best to fill in all the areas labeled with that same color. Then, I repeated the process with the next color. Slowly, the background started to take shape. My 11 year old wanted to help, so I assigned him a color and he got to work too. The great thing about paint by number is that there’s no special skill required. All you have to do is use the correct color and try your best to stay within the lines.
At first, I wasn’t sure how the image would turn out, because the colors it called for didn’t always match what I would have used. For example, I would have thought the fence should be different shades of brown, but the numbers called for one shade of brown and multiple shades of green. To my surprise, though, when the background was complete, it really did look like the two bushes and the fence!
Once I finished the background, it was time for the trickiest part, us! Once again, I was surprised by some of the colors, but they really did work! Slowly, our clothes and even our faces began to take shape. I saved my dress for last because it had the most detail and the tiniest spaces.
After several days, I finished the painting! I was pleasantly surprised by just how much it looked like the original photo. I don’t think anyone would guess at first glance that it was paint by numbers!
My choices were to try and get a wooden frame and stretch the canvas over it, or to mat and frame the photo instead. I happened to have a 16×20 frame and an 11×14 mat on hand already, so I opted for that instead of making a trip to the craft store. The mat does cut off a bit of the painting, but you can still see plenty and I really like the look of the finished project.
I will admit, though, that as happy as I am to have it hanging on the wall in our home, I was a little sad to finish, because the process itself was so relaxing. I thoroughly enjoyed the “me-time” I got while painting and listening to music. I’m definitely going to need another picture to paint now!
What about you? Did you know there are paint by number projects for grownups? Have you ever tried one? Check out Winnie’s Picks to see all the pre-printed options or create your own custom painting like I did! Now, I really want one of our adorable dog, Pumpkin! What would you love to paint? Use the code AMY10 to save 10% off your first order at Winnie’s Picks! Happy painting!