How to Select an Easy Paint by Numbers Kit for Beginners

In life, simple pleasures are to be found everywhere. A paint by numbers kit is one of these pleasures; not only do they offer a creative outlet, but also a rare sense of tranquility. And no, they aren’t just for kids. After all, no one’s above learning, and it’s certainly never too late to learn.

You can begin experimenting by buying a paint by numbers kit. You don’t even have to go—it can arrive all the way to your doorstep. But before you pull your wallet out, you might want to consider a few things.

Wondering how to select an easy paint by numbers kit for beginners? Luckily, you’re in the right place. Hop along!

Selecting an Easy Paint by Numbers Kit for Beginners

For those who are inexperienced, picking out a kit can be a bit confusing. There are all kinds of kits out there: oil and acrylic kits, impressionist and baroque paintings.

Here are some details you might want to consider.

Detailed or Abstract?

What kind of painting is too difficult to manage? For beginners, detailed paintings might present somewhat of a challenge.

Remember: learning is a process. Take your time and don’t dive head-first into an advanced painting.

This is where abstract paintings can come in handy. They’ve just enough spaces and numbers to keep you engaged, yet they’re not too complicated for beginners.

Additionally, abstract paintings offer you a certain freedom that other paintings don’t. For example, more “realistic” paintings are restrictive because you have to forgo artistic conventions. This is especially hard for a beginner who’s still grappling with the basics.

Painting Medium

Acrylic Paints

Are you working with an acrylic kit? Or are you working with another kind of paint? You’ll notice that most beginner kits employ the use of acrylics. This is because acrylics are easy to work with and quick to dry down.

Nonetheless, acrylics’ ability to dry quickly can be a disadvantage. Paint can quickly grow tacky on the brush when you’re still pushing it around, which means you’ll have to use more paint than necessary.

To overcome all of the common problems that accompany acrylics when painting, you need to take a few precautions.

For starters, make sure to open only one pot at a time. Also, don’t forget to put the lids back on to keep the paint from drying. It’d also help if you painted one number at a time rather than multiple numbers at once.

All About Paints

Paint by number kits may seem straightforward and simple, and that’s largely part of their appeal. However, the paint that accompanies these kits often appears to be hit-or-miss.

Sometimes, the paint can be too spotty. Using it, you’ll have a hard time covering the numbers. You may try to counter its insufficient texture by layering on a thick coat, but you’d be surprised by how quickly this can turn into a mess!

Moreover, a lot of these kits include paint containers. Opening these containers can turn them tacky really fast, especially if you leave multiple containers open at once.

As a result, you’ll end up stirring these containers with toothpicks to keep the paint nice and smooth. This will waste an incredible amount of paint.

Overall, it’d be best if you purchase a painting kit that includes paint tubes. This way, you can squeeze a suitable amount of paint in your container with no problem.

What You Need to Know Before Painting

Before you make your order, you need to think about some things first. These details may seem small, but they’re incredibly detrimental to your overall painting experiment.

Painting Environment

You need to find a suitable environment to work in. For starters, it needs to be well-lit. If you try to paint in a dim place, you won’t only hurt your eyes and back, but you could also mess up your painting.

This could largely affect your performance. The bigger your kit is, the more detailed it is. And the more detailed it is, the more numbers and spaces it has. In such cases, you could use lamps to allow for better lighting. You could even use a magnifying glass.

All About Tables

Whether you’re on your computer or painting, the persistent backache is probably an all-too-familiar affair. Being hunched over your desk for long hours can only affect your back and neck negatively.

For those reasons, you should remind yourself to change your position every now and then. Not only will this make you more comfortable, but it’ll help you avoid unnecessary pain when painting.

Even switching between surfaces could help. If you’re starting to feel that soreness settle in again, try switching from a flat surface to tabletop easel, and vice versa.

Take a Picture!

A paint by numbers kit can get particularly messy. This is precisely why you need to take a picture with your phone of the untouched painting. A picture will serve as a reference and a reminder.

While painting, there’s an endless range of things that could happen; you could tear, spill, misplace, or even burn. Using the picture you took on your phone, you could zoom in to see every nook and cranny. This will help gain a clearer image of the borders and the details if you lose sight of them in the process.

Avoid Smudging!

One of the biggest problems a lot of beginners face with these kits is smudging. Your arm has never seemed more than an obstacle!

However, if you paint right, it won’t be.

To avoid any smudging, tackle one number at a time. Then, work your way from the top to the bottom. This way, your wrist will cause fewer issues.

Also, be patient. When switching between colors, remember to take a break as not to smudge them together.

From Darkest to Brightest

When you’re painting, be mindful of your colors. It’s preferable to paint first using the darkest color available to you. Then, start to lighten the shades until you reach the lightest color.

This will help you comprehend the composition of colors better. It also helps you understand how they relate to one another. You’ll quickly start to see the impact of colors against each other. After all, to show how dark something is, you have to contrast it against something light.

Amount of Paint

No matter how much you want to, you shouldn’t soak your brush in paint. Instead, let it gather an amount that’s sufficient enough to cover the required space, but not too much that it should leak into a connected space.

Remember: don’t let your brush drip with paint. This will conserve paint, and make it easier to paint in the smaller details.

Degree of Thickness

This is a common issue for beginners. What degree of thickness is suitable when painting? How many times do you have to layer over a space?

It’s important to not overuse paint when working. If you do, you could increase the risk of smudging. Additionally, the painting will take longer to dry.

Instead, layer your paint up to a medium thickness. You’ll know that you’ve reached an adequate layer when you see the number covered.

Move from Bigger to Smaller

A paint by numbers kit has small and big sections. To make things easier, you might begin by painting the bigger sections first. To do this, you should start painting in descending order; from biggest to smallest.

This will conserve both your time and energy. It’ll also help you avoid any unnecessary smudging.

Should You Use Gesso for Your Paint by Numbers Kit?


Gesso is a mixture that consists of a binder, chalk, pigment, and some other chemicals. It’s used as a primer for painting surfaces so that the paint would hold on longer. This allows for a longer lifetime for the painting, as well as better paint application.

However, gesso is typically used to prime canvases or panels. Do you have to use it for your paint by numbers kit?

The answer is no. Gesso usually accompanies oil paint, not acrylic paint. A lot of paint by numbers kits employ acrylic paints.

Nonetheless, it’s up to you. If your kit is non-acrylic, you could use gesso. In such cases, you must only use clear gesso. Colored gesso, such as white gesso, could cover up the numbers and spaces you need to complete your painting.

Conclusion – Easy paint by numbers

Paint by numbers kits are all about having fun. No matter how tips and tricks you arm yourself with, you won’t achieve anything notable if you’re not having fun.

Be patient. Take your time. We know it’s tempting to swallow your easy paint by numbers kit in one day, but it’s important to take a breather every now then. Those breaks aren’t only for you, they’re also for the quality of your painting, which will be a lot better. Good luck!

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