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DIY: Quick & Easy Artwork – 30 Minute Acrylic Painting

Last Updated on December 17, 2012 by Kristi Linauer

You may have noticed that I’m often drawn to DIY projects that are quite time-consuming and tedious (like this and this and this).  I really do have to force myself to think of quick and simple projects.  So when I decided to replace the paint chip artwork that was above the pet station (I liked that artwork, but it just didn’t seem to have enough oomph for that wall), I decided that I would try my hand at something truly fast and simple.  So I purchased a canvas and some small bottles of acrylic paint, and with a vision in my head, I created a piece of artwork in about 30 minutes.

It’s nothing fancy…obvious.  It took 30 minutes!  But I really like the color variation and the movement.  It’s definitely more exciting and colorful than the paint chip artwork.

I didn’t really mean for it to be anything.  But of course, because of the colors I use, my “artwork” often turns out looking like a sunset over water.  But I really wasn’t intending to create a sunset over water.  I just wanted something colorful, with lots of movement, highs and lows, lights and dark, and a fluid look.

It was super simple to make, and you don’t have to have a ton of creativity or talent to make a painting like this.  I started by putting drops of acrylic paint on the canvas in zones of color, with green at the bottom, then dark blue, light blue, orange, and yellow.  I did the first three colors, and then flipped the canvas around and worked on the last two colors.

After putting the drops of paint on the canvas, I loaded up a slightly wet 2″ Purdy paint brush with white latex paint left over from my ceiling, and just started painting across the canvas with very even strokes.  I would add more white paint when I felt it was needed, but I tried not to blend too much.  I really wanted the color variations to show.

I did clean my brush between colors, but I also tried to blend between each color just a bit.

It’s no masterpiece, and I’m sure any true artist or art critic would laugh their heads off at my attempt at artwork, but that’s okay!  I happen to like it.  🙂  And since it only took 30 minutes of my time, I think it’s a pretty good return on my time investment.

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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kathy Strader
    November 13, 2012 at 9:50 am

    Sometimes the simple things give us the most pleasure. Arts and crafts do not have to be hard or time consuming to be valuable. I love what you’ve done!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    [email protected]
    November 13, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    It looks beautiful Kristi! i love the colors you used.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    [email protected] beautiful life
    November 13, 2012 at 7:21 pm

    Hi Kristi! I love the colors and simplicity of the art. It looks great.

    Have a “Crazy Beautiful” week!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    November 14, 2012 at 10:24 am

    Love it.. thats my kind of artwork.. I think it would be even prettier with a quote of some kind on it.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi Linauer
      November 14, 2012 at 10:27 am

      I was actually thinking the same thing. It would make a nice “background” for something like a quote. But then it wouldn’t be 30-minute artwork! 😉 I may add something if I can think of the perfect thing.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        October 14, 2014 at 8:13 am

        Actually, it could still be 30 minute artwork. You just stick vinyl letters on the canvas before you paint it, then peel them off, and wa-la…your quote is there in white. I recommend painting white over the letters first to prevent the color from bleeding under the letters, though. You can find vinyl letters in the art department of a craft store OR you can cut them out with a Cricut machine (if you have one or know someone who has one). I love making my own “art”. It is easy and fun (and relaxing), and I don’t care if anyone considers it real art.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    November 14, 2012 at 11:00 pm

    I think it’s beautiful. And if you love it that’s all that really matters right? It’s your house after all. I love you blog!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    November 15, 2012 at 8:14 am

    It looks amazing and I love the fluidity of it. Just wondering if I can do that – believe me, paint and I do NOT get along. I can do a lot of other crafty things but give me paint and a brush and I am a disaster.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lisa T
    November 15, 2012 at 9:20 am

    I think it looks great. Just like dessert sometimes the simplest ones to make are the best!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ian Ace
    November 15, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    Nice work Kristi! Your beautiful painting blends well with the wall color.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    November 15, 2012 at 11:28 pm

    I love this!! Totally looks like something you could have bought in a store. So yes, you should be happy with it.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jets Jewelry
    November 19, 2012 at 8:42 pm

    Love the art work

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    DIY: Iridescent Watercolor “Fish Scale” Artwork
    December 3, 2012 at 10:04 am

    […] for under $20 December 3, 2012 By Kristi Linauer Leave a Comment   The 30-minute acrylic artwork that I made to go over the pet station in my breakfast area has since gone to live in the […]

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    January 4, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Love everything….have just found your blog….so happy!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    January 18, 2013 at 9:29 pm

    I love it! I’m going to attempt to make one tomorrow!!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    February 4, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    I was hoping you would post a video to show how did you paint it like that. I may be very UNartistic, but it sure looks like art to me. SO even if you would just show it on a paper just to show the technique, it would be great.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Angela Kloss
    February 12, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    I love it! Honestly, I’m going to do that for my home. I’ve been wanting art for my walls but I’m very particular. And this is just an awesome idea especially adding on words and phrases. I can’t wait to create my own. Thank you!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    April 1, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    Beautiful! Half an hour? That’s the best part!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    April 18, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    Did you realize that this picture looks like you’re standing on the beach, looking over water while the sun is setting?


  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 2, 2013 at 2:31 am

    If the “art community” was to talk about your painting and hyped it up proper it could suddenly become a masterpiece worth thousands! I love it, especially that it’s very duplicatable in any color scheme one likes (though I like yours quite well). I love your site and am a kindred spirit. I’ve got to find people who don’t want to do this themselves to buy stuff done by me! Do you make “extras” and sell them? I always start out making something to sell, then being somewhat unable to part with it. Did you ever see that commercial about “Tommy’s Toys”? I don’t even remember what the scenario was really advertising, but probably advertising. Anyway, he says “I’m Tommy and these are my toys” and he’s basically a toy shop owner who loves his toys so much he doesn’t really want to buy the advertising to sell them. Struck me funny. Like you, I don’t have enough walls.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ms Paulette House
    January 11, 2014 at 11:19 pm

    I enjoy looking at all your projects. You are extremely talented. You are truly blessed in decorating and creating!