Can Paint by Numbers Help You Learn to Paint?

In 2017, roughly 11,000 students received degrees in Studio Fine Arts. It’s a joy to know that so many new artists emerge every year!

However, you don’t have to pay thousands of dollars or attend years of schooling to learn to paint.

If you’re looking to improve your painting skills but don’t have the time or resources to devote to formal education, why not pick up a few paint by numbers sets?

Read on for more information on how paint by numbers sets can help you to hone your skills and become a better painter.

Learn to Paint without the Pressure

Oftentimes, when we’re first starting out in a new creative field, we get bogged down by the pressure of picking our subject. Before we even practice or ability to render a realistic or recognizable image, we have to decide what that image will be.

If you’re a beginner, you may not know yet what your eye is drawn to. Developing our own personal style and taste comes with time.

Paint by number sets relieves some of that pressure by giving us a predetermined image to work with. That way, we can focus on our technical skills and worry about our individual creative preferences later!

Plus, paint by numbers sets relieves the pressure of stocking up on supplies for a new hobby. When we’re uncertain of our abilities, it feels more difficult to justify the financial investment in the necessary tools. Paint by numbers sets come with the paints, brushes, canvas, and wall mounting supplies.  Everything you need to complete that first piece!

Visualize Smaller Components in an Image

Perhaps one of the hardest parts about painting a realistic or recognizable image is learning to see an object in parts rather than as a whole.

Take, for example, a still life of an apple. When we look at the still life, we quickly perceive that we are looking at an apple.  The apple has rounded edges, and that it is red. The artist, however, was able to see many varying shades of red.  The white glints of light, and the black areas in shadow.

Visual perception theory posits that when our brain receives “enough” information, we are able to directly perceive what we are looking at. In other words, there’s no need to break down the image into parts in order to make sense of it. In order to paint, you will need to learn to see both the parts and the whole in order to not only capture the shape of an object but also the colors that create depth, light, and darkness.

Before you begin painting your paint by number canvas, you will see an image that may appear, at first, confusing. This is because what will become a recognizable object is currently broken into smaller parts than we might expect.

Seeing these smaller components and how they come to life when different colors are applied can help us retrain the brain to search for the smaller components in the objects we wish to represent with free-hand painting.

Learn the Importance of Tone and How to Create Tones

In art, tone refers to the level of lightness or darkness of a color, rather than what that color is. Once you know how to create a variety of tones using a single color mixed with either white or black paint, you unleash a whole new world! (Plus, you save yourself a ton of money that you’d otherwise have to spend on a large collection of individual paints.)

You can practice the creation of tones by creating tone scales. In other words, using the same color, you create several swatches that move from dark to light in tone. However, this won’t necessarily show you the way that tone can liven up an actual painting.

It’s remarkable how relative tone is. A tone scale won’t reveal the way the lightness or darkness of a tone appears relative to the surrounding colors and tones. Paint by numbers sets, however, will give you the opportunity to see how the same tone looks when paired with different surrounding colors and tones.

Develop Better Motor Skills and Brush Control While You Learn To Paint

Studies have found that we lose some of our fine motor skills as we age. Being able to paint precise, small details requires a great deal of fine motor control that may not come naturally to those who haven’t practiced with those skills in a long time.

When we free-hand paint, we may not notice the way that our fine motor skills are fading. When we examine a completed painting, we may notice that some of the details aren’t as sharp but we don’t know how to fix that issue or may feel like it’s too late to salvage the painting.

Because paint by numbers canvases are divided into those smaller components, it will be more noticeable to us when we, for example, paint outside the lines. This gives us an opportunity to correct the issue before the painting is complete. It also allows us to practice painting those small details over and over again as we make our way through the full painting.

Practice Different Brush Strokes with Different Sized Brushes

As we paint each individual component on a paint by number canvas.  We begin to see how different brush strokes and different brush sizes work. It is more intuitive to reach for your finest tipped brush to complete the smallest details when those spaces are designated for us. In turn, we are more aware of the fact that a larger brush is better suited for the larger details.

Over time, we may begin to feel more comfortable with a wider variety of brushes. No longer will we reach for that same, single brush to complete an entire painting!

Practice Different Styles

Paint by numbers sets come in a variety of styles. You’ll find that some of the paintings are highly realistic while others follow the style of Impressionist painters or modern painters.

Getting comfortable with different styles of painting can give you a sense of what your own, personal style is. After all, many people begin their creative journeys by mimicking the artists they admire.  As well as learning how they achieved certain results. Once you have that experience under your belt, you can graduate to a more experimental style that becomes wholly your own!

Grow Your Paint by Numbers Practice with Your Skill Level

The first few times you pick up paint by numbers set, you may find that it’s best to follow the directions exactly as they are laid out. Use the set as a sort of mentor and learn how the colors you are instructed to use work in harmony with one another.

By your third or fourth paint by numbers set, you may find that you’re ready to deviate from the plan. You may start creating your own tones based on your own intuition.  Or add shadowing and highlights that aren’t incorporated into the drawing on the page.

Over time, you’ll find that you can deviate from the instructions in many little ways that make the painting uniquely yours.

Gain Creative Confidence

Confidence is key when beginning a new creative practice. When we’re unsure of our skill level or bogged down with self-doubt, we may leave many projects unfinished. While not every piece has to be perfect.  It can be disheartening to surround ourselves with a number of abandoned, uncompleted pieces.

Paint by numbers sets allows you to see through the entire process from start to finish. They come with wall mounting supplies that let you show off your work to your friends and family, too! Visualizing those gorgeous, finished pieces will prove to you that you are growing in your practice and give you the confidence to carry on.

Learn to Paint with Paint by Numbers

If you’ve always longed to learn to paint but never knew where to begin.  Paint by numbers sets may be just what the doctor ordered. You can receive the lessons and mentorship you need without leaving your home or enrolling in a class!

Not sure which set to choose? Shop our most popular paint by numbers sets to see what everyone is buzzing about!

If you have questions about your order, our products, or the world of painting, email us at support@ledgebay.com. Alternatively, go to the bottom of our webpage and fill out the customer contact sheet. Happy painting!



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