The 3 Key Secrets of Portrait Painting Success

A woman in an apron is painting a portrait on an easel.

Find out the three vital tricks a beginner need to know to paint the ultimate portrait.

Perfecting the art of portrait painting, you may feel the void of the most versatile brand of paint or brushes with the most suitable bristles. Once you sit in front of your canvas you’ve drawn beautifully, but just the transition from pencil to a paintbrush may feel revolutionary. As a result, buying yet another shade of brown or skimming through articles online may seem like a far better idea. If this sounds like you, you are in the right place. Keep reading to discover the three essential secrets that will open the door to the success of portrait painting. 

The Significance of Beginning

The inevitable step towards painting the perfect portrait is starting! In any creative pursuit, your biggest regret would be not commencing. We often take time for granted. Thus, days, weeks, months, and even years may go by while we make time and allow ourselves to start. It would be best if you sat down and self-reflect. Why is it you are taking so much time? What are your excuses for the delay?

What steps can you take to address them? If one of those specific issues is not resolved for any reason, is it impossible to start your painting? Answer those questions, and if you calm your mind and put in the effort, you will realize your ‘problems’ aren’t problems anymore, or at least won’t get in the way of your painting. If you want a portrait for your home, convince your brain that there appears a void on the wall to be empty for so long. 

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All you have to do is permit yourself. It may sound like something on an Instagram page that posts inspirational quotes, but it is what it is. You need to acknowledge and embrace the fact that you are human. Just because you haven’t started till now doesn’t mean you can’t. You will undoubtedly make mistakes. You will fail and feel like you are not made to be an artist. But then, you will come to realize that’s what makes you an artist. You will pick yourself up and permit yourself to be human, to be an artist. You will work on your art and confidently claim yourself as an artist. However, none of that will happen if you don’t start. 

Perfecting the Recipe

You may feel overwhelmed by the expectations you have of yourself, especially if you keenly follow renowned portrait artists. You can try spending more time looking at other people’s art. Sometimes, all you need is a little push. One of those days, you’ll come across a portrait that will shake you to the core. It will make you feel alive. Or it may create an entire opposite feeling; it may make you realize that you have been missing something essentially all along. It’ll help you identify your void.

Then, you study that artist and find out about their method. It may be conventional, or something you wouldn’t have thought up even in your wildest dreams. No matter what or how it is, it will be unique, the artist’s personalized style. All in all, you will be inspired and thus start to work. Once you do so, you will develop your style. You can purchase the main elements of your painting, and paint kits from paint by numbers Australia.

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You know, how all our mothers cook the same dishes but have their minor tweaks? Once you continue painting, you will have your touch in the art you create. Your approach to the whole painting process will also be unique. Some blast jazz or classical and munch on wine and cheese while painting. At the same time, others prefer to let out their creativity in a much serene environment. You can choose to learn from art schools to become a professional. If you have access to opportunities, try making your way to the root of your preferred art form. Go to the source of that particular style. 

Not Letting Anything Limit your Creativity

This tip may seem a little contradictory to the points made before about finding inspiration. While as an artist, you do have to be constantly on the lookout for anything that might spark your creativity or could influence your art, you also need to ensure that this hunt doesn’t stifle you. Convince yourself to use anything within your capability and reach to create art, no matter how unconventional. It’s okay if you don’t have a revolutionary idea. No matter how unbelievable it may sound, you don’t need one. It would help if you dared to mess up and not give up, and the determination to keep going no matter what happens. 

Prepare your mind to adapt to even the most adverse of situations. Some artists have faced physical or mental illnesses that have left them handicapped, but there wasn’t a dent in their art journey. Some of them reached their best form only after struggling horribly. This doesn’t mean you have to suffer to paint lovely portraits. You have to take the lesson out of those instances of not giving up despite worldly obstacles. If you plan to paint to decorate your home with your paintings, portraits aren’t the only option

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You may try challenging yourself under certain creative constraints. That can help your creativity ebb and flow in the right direction. You may try to avoid limitations with all your might, but sometimes it might help you! You may give yourself a short deadline or choose not to use a specific tool, like a particular paintbrush for a certain portrait. Potential failures may lead to breakthroughs. You may end up discovering your style.


If you follow the tips mentioned above and keep practicing, you will reach success in time, whether you have the art gene in you or not. Do remember, though; you have to take all the advice with a pinch of salt. Not everything works for everyone. Anyway, get your art smocks on and grab that brush. Happy portrait painting!

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