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How to Paint Alliums

Updated February 21, 2017

Alliums are a family of flowers that bloom in early summer. The perennial bulbs are planted in fall and do best in full sun. The flowers are large, brightly-coloured and resemble large puff balls. The flowers have an X-shape at the end but, from further away, the buds look more like a long, straight line. Alliums bloom at the end of a long, thin green stem and normally do not have any flowers. Because of the nature of the flower, they are one of the easiest ones to paint.

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  1. Sketch out the basic design of your painting. For alliums, draw a long, curving line for the stem and a large ball for the actual flower. You can choose how many alliums you want to include and the height of each flower. Step back and look at your work; make any needed adjustments.

  2. Paint the stems green using a size 2 paint brush. You do not need to follow the line you drew exactly, but use it as a guide. The stem should be fairly thin and looks best if you paint it in one motion. Practice on a scrap sheet of paper if you so desire.

  3. Paint an X-shape in the centre of the circle you drew for the allium with a number 6 paint brush. Use any of the shades of the colour you chose.

  4. Paint lines coming from the X with the number 6 brush and the shade that you initially used. Don't fill the circle with these lines, but have several on each axis.

  5. Paint additional lines coming from the X, using the remaining shades of paint and the number 2, 6 and 10 paint brushes. The differences in colour and size gives the allium depth and makes it look more realistic. The placing of the different lines should be random, as a pattern makes it look fake.

  6. Paint small X-shapes on the end of some of the lines with the darkest shade and the number 2 paint brush. This is optional, but gives the flower more depth. Allow the paint to dry.

  7. Paint any additional lines on the flower after you allow the paint to dry. This step is optional, depending on how you feel about your creation.

  8. Tip

    Darker colours such as purple, blue and red look most dramatic, especially if you leave the background of your painting white. While getting the hang of painting alliums, paint a single flower or a bouquet of two or three flowers tied with a ribbon, which can be easily done with the number 2 brush and a sideways 8 motion, followed by long strokes for the tails.

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Things You'll Need

  • Canvas or paper
  • Pencil
  • Size 2 paint brush
  • Size 6 paint brush
  • Size 10 paint brush
  • Green acrylic paint
  • Acrylic paint in two to three shades of the same colour

About the Author

Jamie Farber started writing professionally in 2000. Her work has appeared in several newspapers, including "The Grand Rapids Press," "The Advance" and "The Wooster Daily Record," as well as in several local magazines and on various websites. Farber holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from The College of Wooster.

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