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How to Paint a Hydrangea

Hydrangea flowers are not only a beautiful summer bloom, but are so easy and fun to paint in acrylics on canvas. It’s really about creating shapes and repeating the same stroke over and over again and changing paint colors. I am here to lead you through step by step instructions or you can watch the video tutorial on how to paint a hydrangea in acrylic on canvas below that takes you through the entire process. For my painted hydrangeas below, I decided I wanted to make my painted flowers more white than green. Just pick varying shades of paint that get progressively lighter if you want to paint different colors of hydrangeas. I love gathering a bunch of beautiful hydrangea flower for a vase, so this project gave me the perfect excuse!

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Are you ready to paint hydrangeas? Let’s gather a few supplies or our supply list! To paint these easy flowers you are going to need 8×10 black canvas (or a white canvas painted black), acrylic paint (craft paint is fine) in dark brown, dark hooker’s or Hauser green, medium sap or light Hauser green, lime green, cream and titanium white, a filbert brush or round brush and that’s it! Note: I’m using a 4 filbert brush. For a more delicate petal, pick a smaller brush, or for a larger canvas to keep it in scale, for larger petals use a larger brush.

Grab supplies here for how to paint a hydrangea

Painting a canvas with black paint

The first step in painting your hydrangea flower heads is determining how many and placement. I decided on three beautiful clusters of flowers and centered them slightly overlapped on the outside edges. The first step is to use the dark brown paint as a base color to create a blobby outline and then paint it in.

Paint 3 blobs of paint to make a hydrangea

With the dark green paint, use the brush to make short marks all of the way around the outside of the brown blobs.

Make basic paint lines around the outisde of the brown blob

Once the outside of the brown blobs are filled with the green paint lines, fill in the center with more random green paint lines.Make sure to still leave some of the brown paint peeking through. Let dry.

Paint more green blobs in the middle of the brown paint to make a base for painting a hydrangea

For the first stroke on the next layer, use the medium green paint to make an “x” pattern. make small x’s all over the hydrangea flower , overlapping with the dark green but not completely covering it. Also add some single strokes to create some individual petals with each color around the edges and in the middle to add variation

Paint lighter x marks in the centerr of the flowers

Once the medium green is dry, repeat the same process with the light lime green color. Make sure to let the paint dry between each layer of your hydrangea petals so they don’t get muddy. Hard paint edges are better with this project.

Paint even lighter green x marks over the top of the others

At this point, I wanted to warm my painted hydrangea flowers up, so I used a cream paint to repeat the process. If I had wanted to keep them green, I would have stayed in the green color family (same for a blue hydrangea use varying shades of paints in the blue and violet color family ).

Then paint lighter cream paint over the light green paint

To add highlights to my hydrangea flower head and give them more depth, I then used titanium white paint to make my x-pattern, but I kept them near the top of the flower petals. This will give a slight shadow effect to your flowers.

Go over the cream paint with white paint with a x mark pattern when painting hydrangeas

Once your flowers are painted, you can add you leaves. Hydrangea leaves have serrated edge, so the messier you are with your leaf shape the better. A little trick to painting leaves is to paint a rough leaf shape with thicker paint and then while the paint is still wet, use the other end of your paint brush to scrap leaf lines into the paint. The more imperfect the better! Then you can use those lines to add highlights on the leaves between.

Use the back of the brush to create leaf lines in wet paint

And there you have it! You’ve painted an easy and beautiful cluster of hydrangea flowers! I knew you could!

Upclose of how to paint a hydrangea flower

Do you love hydrangeas? See how to make them last and dry them here.

For more painting tutorials, see how to paint an easy sunflower with one brush!

How to paint hydrangeas in acrylic paint