Hey there, want to learn how to paint a snowman that’s easy for beginners with a fun twist?
In this tutorial you’ll learn how to paint a simple snowman with a hat, scarf, carrot nose and your choice of snowman faces (the twist!), that I’ll share with you below.
You can make it a snowman, snow-woman, or anything you’d like. It’s a fun and easy painting idea that even a beginner can paint.
This tutorial (Youtube tutorial included) works well for school art projects, paint and sip parties or a nice winter / Christmas painting idea. Looking for more creative holiday inspired tutorials? Check out this 65+ Christmas painting ideas list for a slew of festive art projects for all skill levels.
Let’s get started with this snowman tutorial.
Snowman Painting Tutorial on YouTube
Below you’ll find the step by step painting tutorial on YouTube if you prefer to follow via video instruction.
How to Paint A Snowman With Acrylics
Below is the step by step snowman tutorial. After the tutorial you’ll find the FREE download file where you can choose from 20+ different snowman faces and expressions.
- 10 x 10 Stretched Canvas
- Mars Black
- Phthalo Blue
- Titanium White
- Cadmium Red Medium Hue
- Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue
- 3/4" Flat Wash Brush
- Size 5 Round Brush
- Size 1 Round Brush (detailing)
- 1/4" Angled Brush
- Optional: White Gel Pen
- Follow the YouTube painting tutorial here.
- Paint in the background of your snowman painting using Phthalo Blue (with a tiny bit black mixed in) at the top of the canvas. Use the 3/4" flat wash brush with horizontal back and forth strokes. Top 1/3" canvas is Phthalo Blue + tiny bit black, middle 1/3" canvas is white mixed in with blue mixture, bottom 1/3" canvas is more white mixed in. At the end, the background will be a gradient from darkest blue at the top, fading into a light blue at the bottom of the canvas.
- Paint in a snowbank at the bottom of the canvas with white paint. The blue background can still be a bit wet and blend in a bit with the white. Snow has a natural blue shadow to it so its okay for them to mix.
- In the middle of the white snowbank, mix in some black+blue with the chiseled edge of your flat brush. It's okay if it's dark, this will eventually become the shadow beneath the snowman.
- Paint in the basic shape of a snowman with titanium white (switch over to your large round brush). Let loose and paint the snow with criss-cross strokes so the snow has texture to it. Also, it's okay if the strokes come out of the snowball shape. Snow balls are not naturally perfectly round circles, so let the paint fall outside the lines 😉
- Now add the shadows around the edges of each snowball. Add a tiny amount of blue and black on the tip of your paintbrush and paint it on. If it's too dark mix in some white paint. to soften the color. Leave to dry before moving onto the next step
- Dry off your round brush (so that most of the moisture is wicked away) and pick up a small amount of pure white paint. Add another layer of white (with loose criss-cross brush strokes) over the bottom snowball of your snowman, leaving the sides (where to shadows are). When you run out of paint on your paint brush go over the shadowed areas of the snow ball so that it lightly covers some of the color, leaving some of that shadowed color still peak through. Essentially to create a "round" looking snowball. the lightest area is the center and gradually fades into the shadowed area on either side of the snowball. Repeat this for each snowball. When you're done, take a step back and analyze. Go back in and add in some more white in areas that are too dark and darken the shadows if they're too light, until you're happy with it.
- Paint in the snowman's arms as two branches sticking out from either side of the middle snowball. Use your 1/4" angled brush and thin black paint (thin down black paint until it's a gravy like consistency).
- Paint the snowman's hat using the same angled brush and thin black paint
- Choose your painted snowman faces from the image here or the download below. Have fun here and pick the expression that calls out to you the most.
- Add the snowman's eyes and mouth with black paint and the small round detail brush (or paint your own custom eyes/mouth)
- Paint in the snowman's carrot nose with your small round detail brush in the shape of a long narrow triangle on it's side. To make orange mix 1 part red with 4 parts yellow until you get to a nice carrot orange color. P
- Paint in some eyebrows and rosy cheeks to finish off this snowman's face (Optional). You can also paint in 3 round buttons down the middle snowball
- Paint in the snowman's scarf. You can customize the colors of your scarf here. If you want to follow along with me use some red with your angled brush and paint the basic shape first. Then pick up some white and add some white stripes, along with a fringe at the bottom of the scarf.
- Add some embellishments to the snowman's hat as an optional step. I added a big red stripe on his hat and a small branch with winter berries on it.
- Add some snow on top of your snowman's arm/branches and on the rim of his hat. Simply take your angled brush (make sure its as dry as possible). Pick up a tiny amount of white paint and drag your brush along the branches and hat and let the paint land where it will.
- Paint in some ornaments dangling from the branches. Some options here are stars, hearts, round baubles even candy canes!
- Paint in some large fractal snowflakes and smaller snowflakes falling from the sky. I used my white gel pen for the intricate snowflakes but if you don't have access to a gel pen then use your smallest detailing brush and some thin white paint (gravy consistency).
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PHOENIX White Blank Cotton Stretched Canvas Artist Painting - 10x10 Inch / 8 Pack - 5/8 Inch Profile Triple Primed for Oil & Acrylic Paints
Liquitex BASICS Acrylic Paint, 8.45-Oz Tube, Titanium White
Liquitex BASICS Acrylic Paint, 4-oz tube, Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue
Liquitex 1046151 BASICS Acrylic Paint, 4-oz tube, Cadmium Red Medium Hue
Liquitex BASICS Acrylic Paint, 8.45-oz tube, Mars Black
Liquitex 4385316 BASICS Acrylic Paint, 8.45-oz tube, Phthalocyanine Blue
How to paint a snowman face
Snowman faces are thankfully very simple to paint. A traditional snowman’s face have 2 black round eyes (coal), an orange carrot nose and a black dot-like smile (rocks/buttons). But there are a world of possibilities to give your snowman more expression and bring it to life.
Add in some rosy cheeks, luscious lashes, some fun sunglasses, or even eyebrows! Any detail you add will help personalize to your snowman and make him/her as unique as you are.
You can paint these snowman faces on anything from fun snowman face ornaments, to wood round (below).
How to paint a snowman on wood
The beauty with this snowman tutorial is that you can paint it on wood or any other surface. To paint on wood, simply give it a coat of acrylic white paint then leave to dry. After the white paint is dried you can paint overtop much like a blank canvas.
Use the same colors listed in the tutorial. In terms of brushes sizes you might have to adjust depending on the size of the wood slice or plank. Use larger brushes for a larger wood panel or small detail brushes if painting on small wood rounds.
If you’re painting on smaller wood rounds and want to learn more about how to paint on wood slices , check out that post. You’ll learn tips when painting on wood like how to prep and seal your wood.
Another cute idea is to paint in the face on a wooden round slice (using the 20+ face ideas above).
Finished Snowman Paintings
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