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10+ Easy Canvas Fall Painting Ideas for Beginners

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If you fancy giving painting a go this autumn, I've got some easy fall painting ideas for beginners that will give you a helping hand. With the leaves turning and the days getting shorter, now is the perfect time to get creative indoors. And, whether you’re using oil paints, acrylics or watercolors, these simple ideas will have you creating beautiful fall paintings in no time.

I am an amateur too, so this is by no means professional advice, and just the approach I have taken (probably wrong!) but hopefully it can serve as some foundation and inspiration for your Autumn painting ideas.

1. A Single Autumn Leaf

I think one of the simplest and most effective ideas is to paint a single autumn leaf. You can use any color palette you like, but I think natural tones work best. To get started, sketch your chosen leaf onto your paper or canvas using a light pencil.

Then when you have got the shape, start painting in the broad colors. I mixed in a dark green for the base, then added lighter greens and yellows for the mid-tones. Finally, I used a orangey-brown for the shadows.

2. An Autumnal Landscape

For a more ambitious project, why not try painting an autumnal landscape? This one is great for practice as it involves a few different elements such as trees, sky and grass. Start by sketching out the basic shape of the scene with a pencil. Then I'd go painting the sky. I used a light blue for the base color and then added some white for the clouds.

Next, paint the trees. I started with the trunks using a dark brown, then added lighter browns and burned oranges and browns for the leaves. For the grass, I fused together a darker brown and green for the base color and then added some yellow and white for highlights.

3. A Bowl of Fruit

Fruit is always a popular subject for paintings, and it’s perfect for autumnal scenes. In this painting, I used a mix of apples, pears and pumpkins. To get started, sketch out the fruit with a pencil. Once you’re happy with the set up, start painting in the range of colors. I used red and green for the apples, yellow and green for the pears, and orange and brown for the pumpkins.

4. A Vase of Flowers

Flowers are another great subject for fall paintings. In this one, I’ve used a mix of autumnal blooms such as dahlias, chrysanthemums and sunflowers. Again, start by sketching out the flowers with a pencil.

After the overally placement, get to painting in the main colors. I used a range of oranges, yellows and reds for the dahlias, pinks and purples for the chrysanthemums, and yellows and oranges for the sunflowers.

5. A Stack of Logs

If you’re looking for a more rustic fall painting idea, how about this stack of logs? For this one, I started by sketching out the logs with a pencil. Once I've got the pencil markings, I'd go onto start painting in the main colors. I created a dark brown for the base of the logs, then added lighter browns and oranges for the mid-tones. Finally, I used a white to add some highlights.

6. An Old Barn

Another great rustic idea is this old barn painting. For this one, I started by sketching out the barn with a pencil. When I got the sketching right and was pleased with that I went on to start painting. I used a light brown for the base of the barn, then added darker browns and oranges for the shadows.

7. A Pumpkin Patch

Pumpkins are synonymous with fall, so it’s only fitting that they feature in one of our fall painting ideas. For this pumpkin patch, I started by sketching out the pumpkins with a pencil. I then went on to a range of different variants of oranges for the pumpkins, then added some yellow and white for highlights. For the background, I used a light blue for the sky and a beat up green for the grass.

8. A Scarecrow

Scarecrows are another great fall motif, and they make for great paintings. For this scarecrow, I started by sketching out the basic shape with a pencil. Then I added that to canvas and pleased with that, I started painting in the main colors. I opted for a light brown for the base, then added darker browns and oranges for the shadows. For the shirt, I used a blue, and for the pants, I used a green.

9. A Basket of Leaves

For a more simple fall painting idea, how about this basket of leaves? For this one, I started by sketching out the leaves with a pencil. Get the placement sorted, then I started painting in the primary colors. I used a range of greens and yellows for the leaves, then added some browns for the shadows.

10. A Bowl of Acorns

Acorns are another great fall subject, and they make for lovely paintings. For this painting, I started by sketching out the acorns with a pencil. I painted with a light brown for the base, then added some darker browns and oranges for the shadows - then a bit of white for highlights.

How to Get Better at Painting Fall Paintings?

There are a whole range of ways that you can get better at painting fall paintings. Here are just a few suggestions:

1. Take a Painting Class

One of the best ways to get better at painting is to take a class. There are plenty of classes available both in-person and online. You’ll be able to learn all the basics, as well as get some helpful feedback from a professional.

2. Join a Painting Group

Another great way to get better at painting is to join a painting group. This is a great way to meet other painters and learn from each other. There are plenty of groups available both in-person and online.

3. Watch Painting Tutorials

If you can’t take a class or join a group, another great option is to watch painting tutorials. There are plenty of tutorial videos available online, and they’re a great way to learn new techniques.

4. Experiment with Different Mediums

One way to make your paintings more interesting is to experiment with different mediums. There are a whole range of mediums available, from watercolors to acrylics to oils. Try out different mediums and see which one you like best.

5. Use Reference Photos

If you’re struggling to come up with ideas, one way to get inspiration is to use reference photos. You can either take your own photos or find photos online. Once you have a reference photo, you can use it to help you plan out your painting.

6. Practice, Practice, Practice

The only way to really get better at painting is to practice as much as you can. The more you paint, the better you’ll become.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Elin Beck