Hand-Painting Garden Rocks: Flowers and Fairies
Painting on rocks is a fun craft for all ages!
Did you ever want to try painting on rocks? I'm here to help you do this! Rocks make an excellent painting canvas for a number of reasons.
- Most rocks are free, which is always nice in my book.
- They're extremely forgiving of mistakes. If you don't like what you paint, you can start over with no problem.
- Painting them is a relaxing hobby. If you need a creative outlet, this can be a great stress reliever as well.
- They make a fun craft for kids too. I painted my first rock when I was a child and really liked it. I have since turned it into a business on eBay, which gives me a way to share my creations with others.
- You can create beautiful pieces on ordinary objects. I made the custom piece above, which features irises, tulips, daffodils, impatiens, crocuses, and pansies!
So... are you ready? Let's go have some fun hand-painting beautiful flowers, fairies, or animals on rocks!
Where Can I Find Rocks to Paint?
Rocks are everywhere! Just take a walk alongside a river, stream, or pond. You can find them where there is new construction. A lot of times, they can be found on greenbelts that run behind neighborhoods.
If you don't want to find them, rocks can also be purchased relatively inexpensively. Most towns have a stone center where stone, slate, and rocks are sold in large quantities. These centers usually have a misfit pile of rock or slate they can't sell at the regular price, usually because they are just broken. The place near me charges a discounted rate for these pieces.
- Sometimes, I can get seven or eight fairly large pieces to paint for only five or six dollars. Just ask if they give discounts on the broken pieces, they are usually happy to get rid of them.
How to Paint a Basket of Pansies
Sometimes, I like to use a stencil to start. This can make things much easier because it gives you a guideline that you can use as a starting point.
The Stencil Method:
- Purchase a flower stencil of your choice.
- Paint the whole rock black on all sides.
- Paint the bottom half with a gold acrylic paint to make it look like a basket.
- Take your stencil and apply your flower design using white acrylic paint over the top portion of the rock.
- After the white paint dries, color in the flowers and leaves with paint pens or acrylic paints. If you do the latter, use the ones in a little bottle with a stencil brush and use the video below for reference.
- Decorate the basket (you can use a basket stencil with random lines using a brown paint pen to give you extra control and accuracy with the lines.
- And there you have it! You have just painted your rock, and I bet it's gorgeous! Congratulations, I knew you could do it!
How to Paint Forget-Me-Not Flowers
What You'll Need:
- Medium-Sized Rock: It should be rounded on top and (preferably) able to stand up on its own. If it can't, you can buy a picture stand to display it.
- Forget-Me-Not Flower Stencil
- Stencil Brushes: I recommend at least three 1/2" brushes, one for each color.
- Acrylic Paint: You'll need three colors for the flowers: white for the initial stencil base, blue for the flower color, and green for the leaves. For the background, you'll need black and white acrylic paint.
- Foam Paintbrushes: Have at least two to paint the black and gold paint on the top and bottom half of the rock.
- Liner Brush or Paint Pens: You'll use this to paint brown lines on the basket. You can also use paint pens for more control. They're fun, easy to use, and come in a wide array of colors. I would recommend using a fine-tip pen to paint the flowers and an extra-fine tip to outline them.
- Purchase a floral stencil. If you choose to find one at a craft store, I suggest visiting it in person for a better selection. You can also shop online, and some of my favorite websites to shop from are Stencil Kingdom, Stencil Library, and Cutting Edge Stencils.
- Paint the top half of the rock in black or dark green paint.
- Paint the bottom half of the rock in gold paint.
- After the black paint dries, stencil the small flowers and leaves in white all over the rock to give it a realistic look.
- After the white flowers and leaves dry, place the stencil over them but add blue paint for the flowers and green paint for the leaves.
- Using a picture of a basket for reference and a thin liner brush, paint brown lines onto the bottom half of the basket.
- You now have the beautiful gift of flowers to give as a gift or to keep for yourself!
This is so easy, but if you need help, post your question in the comment area. I'll be glad to give you some guidance. Below is a short video showing how to stencil forget-me-nots or any small flowers in general.
Kids love painting on rocks too!
So, do you think you are going to try to paint on a rock???
The Art of Decoupage in Rock Decoration
Decoupage is a fun method to use in rock painting.
Basically, it is the art of cutting out pictures and adhering them to another surface. The art takes a lot of patience. I sometimes use decoupage in my artwork to give it an extra realistic look and to use as a painting guideline. I always paint and embellish any cut-outs I use both before and after cutting them out.
To decoupage on a rock, you will need paper prints to cut out. One of the places I look for cut-outs is Dover Publications. They have what seems to be an endless choice of prints to choose from. I choose the flower series books, which come with a colorful picture of each flower and a CD so the images can be printed in all different sizes.
The method I use to download and print them is very easy and a little less involved than package instructions. Here's the process:
1. Insert CD into the hard drive and wait for the pictures to upload.
2. Find the picture you want to print on the computer.
3. Right-click on the picture you want.
4. Select "Copy".
5. Open another window and bring up a blank Word Processing document.
6. Click "Paste" into the document.
7. The picture you selected should appear. If you right-click on the picture within the word doc, you should be able to adjust its size.
I realize this is not the method they tell you to use, but it's easier to do. Of course, you can learn their method and it might be beneficial for you to do so, but my way is quick, simple, and the only way I use it.
Transferring Designs with Saral Transfer Paper
Another easy method you can use to get an outline onto a rock is to use transfer paper that you can buy at most craft stores.
- Just paint the surface of your rock with white paint.
- Print out an image from your computer.
- Place it over the transfer paper and using a pen to trace the design onto the rock.
I love using this method in my stained glass rock art. Transfer paper comes in all different colors, so you can also paint use this method in reverse. Paint your rock or background black. After the background paint dries, place a piece of white Saral transfer paper on top. Find a design you want to transfer to the piece and place it on top of the transfer paper and trace your design.
Use a white Deco paint pen to fill in the design and wait for it to dry. Then, you can use Sharpies to color in the painting over the dry white paint. Easy peasy!
I purchased this book many years ago, and it is the one that got me started on my rock painting journey! It is full of step-by-step instructions. If you decide to try it, you will not be disappointed. Lin Wellford is a master rock painter.
Rock Painting is Fun!
Have you ever painted a rock?
Rock Art InspirationClick thumbnail to view full-size
7 Reasons to Try Rock Painting
There are so many reasons to paint rocks. Here are just a few!
1. They are affordable (usually free).
2. If you make a mistake, it can be easily fixed by washing the rock and starting over.
3. It's a fun hobby for children and adults alike, and one you can enjoy doing together.
4. The painting possibilities are endless. Once you start, you will see ideas everywhere and get inspired by the rock's size and shape.
5. You can sell your painted rocks and make money.
6. Painted rocks make wonderful gifts.
7. The activity inspires creativity.
So go ahead and try it, what have you got to lose? A rock?!