How to Paint Simple Still Life for Beginners

Are you excited to discover valuable tips on painting a simple still life as a beginner, with ample opportunities to use everyday objects and real-life references?

How to Paint Simple Still Life for Beginners

Are you eager to uncover valuable tips on painting a straightforward still life as a beginner? This captivating subject offers a wealth of opportunities as you can readily utilize everyday objects and paint from real-life references. In this guide, we will not only help you create a stunning still life composition but also delve into the art of negative space painting techniques. Get ready to embark on a journey of artistic exploration!

Beginner still life painting tips using negative space techniques

Watercolor painting can be a challenging medium to master, but it also offers tremendous rewards. In this extensive blog post, we will delve into the world of watercolor and explore the technique of painting negative space. By utilizing negative space, we can create captivating compositions and infuse our paintings with depth. Whether you are a novice or just starting your artistic journey, this beginner-friendly tutorial will guide you step by step.

One crucial aspect of successfully employing negative space is to adopt a light-to-dark approach. Essentially, this means beginning with lighter colors and gradually progressing towards darker shades as you paint.

Negative space is a fascinating design technique that can elevate your artwork. Throughout this article, we will examine various ways in which negative space is utilized and discover how you can incorporate it into your own designs. It is a powerful tool for generating striking contrasts between foreground and background elements, as well as establishing a sense of depth within your images.

Before you even touch your brush to the paper, take a few moments to contemplate washes. How can you strategically incorporate washes with specific hues that can later serve as parts of the background and transform into objects by adding darker values?

This process doesn't occur by chance. In the accompanying video, you will witness the initial painting of lemons at an early stage, followed by the meticulous carving out of their shapes using darker hues added to the background and tabletop.

The choice of materials is crucial! To achieve satisfactory results, it is essential to utilize the appropriate watercolor supplies. While inferior paint and paper can be used, they often pale in comparison to professional-grade materials. This doesn't imply that you must possess top-of-the-line equipment. You don't need a $200 brush to achieve the desired outcome. We will also provide recommendations for the best watercolor supplies suitable for both beginners and professional artists.

To complement this guide, we have included a collection of images from the tutorial, allowing you to visualize the step-by-step process and gain inspiration for your own watercolor endeavors.

How to Paint Simple Still Life for Beginners
Lemons by Robert Joyner

The benefits of painting household objects from real life

Painting simple still life compositions using household objects is not only easy but also highly educational. It provides a wonderful opportunity for beginners to enhance their artistic skills and understanding of various elements, such as form, light, and shadow.

By painting from real-life objects, rather than relying solely on photographs, artists can engage with their subjects in a more immersive and intimate way. This hands-on approach allows for a deeper observation of details, textures, and colors, leading to a more accurate and authentic representation.

Additionally, painting from real life enables artists to develop their ability to interpret and capture the nuances of objects, enhancing their artistic growth and visual perception. It is a fulfilling and enriching experience that brings both artistic and educational value to the creative journey.


Embark on your journey of painting negative space with watercolors and unlock the potential for creating captivating artworks. Let's dive in!