How to Paint an Owl Silhouette & Moon
Learn how to paint and easy moon lit sky with a tree branch and owl silhouette in the foreground.
This painting is one of several paintings that I have that require you to trace a paper plate for the first step! The circle is painted completely white for the moon. Easy!
You can leave the owl as a silhouette or add some cute details on the face.
My original, pictured at the top, is slightly different than the one I recorded myself doing. This just goes to show you that no two paintings done by the same artist end up being the same!
Actually, the color variations are because the original was done with Liquitex BASICS paint and the second one was done with Apple Barrel Craft Paint.
Any how, in this tutorial. you will find detailed step by step pictures as well as a video.
Enjoy and Happy Painting Artists!
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- Acrylic Paint (I used the Liquitex Basics brand or Apple Barrel Craft Paint)
- Paint Colors:
- Red Cadmium (Flag Red)
- Orange Cadmium (Jack O Lantern)
- Yellow Cadmium (Bright Yellow)
- Purple Iris (Deep Violet)
- Black (Mars Black)
- White (Titanium White)
- 16″ x 20″ Canvas (You can use any size you want!)
- Paint Brushes
- 9″ Paper plate for tracing the moon
Directions At A Glance:
Step By Step Pictures:
1. Trace A Circle For The Moon & Yellow Ring
Trace an 9″ paper plate with a pencil for the moon.
Paint a yellow ring around the moon using a flat brush. This is about 1″ thick.
2. Paint The Second Ring & Blend
Then paint an orange ring around the yellow ring. The orange should be about the same thickness.
3. Blend the Colors
Blend the two colors together. You can use a wet brush if your paint is still wet and do the “wet on wet” technique to blend the two colors together. If your paint is too dry, try “double loading” your brush with yellow and orange and blend the two colors that way. You can also use a soft dry brush to go over and blend the colors. Or…you can mix orange and yellow on the palette and then apply that color in between the rings!
The two colors are blended together.
4. Paint Red Ring and Blend
Next, paint a red ring around the orange ring. Then blend the red with the orange in the same way you blended the yellow with the orange.
5. Paint The Purple Sky & Blend
Paint the rest of the canvas (except the moon) purple. Blend the purple with the red.
6. Paint The Moon White
Paint the moon in a solid coat of white. Try to keep your strokes circular.
7. Paint Moonbeams
Add some white “C” lines of white around the moon for added interest. You can do this dry brush or wet brush.
8. Paint The Tree Branch
Get your angled brush and load it with black paint. Hold the brush to where the longer bristles are on the left. In the LOWER LEFT CORNER start painting a large branch.
9. Paint The Owl
Fill in the owl solid black.
10. Optional: paint some details on the silhouette
You can add details on the owl such as facial features and talons. This is just an added design element I did on the recorded version of the painting.
11. Paint Leaves
Share Your Art!
Please share your painting in Pinterest or Facebook so we can see it!
8 thoughts on “How to Paint an Owl Silhouette Moon”
The owl was a fun a project. I’ve been in a creative painting rut and this was just what I needed.
I look forward to trying out some of the other painting in the future.
Thanks Jenee! Glad you liked the owl! I definitely know what that creative rut feels like!!
Just did this with my 4 boys. It was fun.
I’m having so much fun with these tutorials. Thank you!
You’re welcome! Glad you’re having fun!
I love your paintings, I am an Activities Director at a care facility. I avoided painting class because I believed that I had no talent, my assistant that was a great paint teacher left so I had to learn. I use your paintings to show the patients that it is not as hard as you think it is, just have fun!
Can you please recommend which brushes to use for this project? Thanks for your help!
Sure! It’s been awhile since I created this painting tutorial but if I were to paint this again today I would use:
-3/4” Wash Brush for the Background
-Either an Angel brush or a Large #10 Round Brush with a point for the Tree and Owl Silhouette
-A #4 Round brush for the details in the owl’s face as well as the leaves.