Impressionism Sunflowers, How I made this Porch Leaner

Impressionism Sunflowers, How I made this Porch Leaner

Finished Sunflower Porch Leaner

A porch leaner does not have to always go outside.  I put mine in an empty corner that needed some cheering up.


I started with a cedar fence slat.  My Mom cut the slat in half.  This section is 36 inches long.  I then sanded it and painted it a very, very light gray and sanded it again.  I like a smooth surface and a distressed look.  Below are the paints I used and brushes I used.

Paint used on Sunflower Porch Leaner

Next I used a ribbon container to make the inside circles of the sunflower.  I hand drew a petal to use for a pattern.  I knew I wanted to fit 3 flowers on the leaner.  It took a few times to get the right size.

I then started tracing the circle 3 times.  A full circle in the middle and the top and bottom circle are a half circles.  I used a pencil because I knew I was going to trace over in dark brown paint and it wouldn’t show through.  But if you are going straight for yellow paint you may want to use a chalk pencil.

Below is how it looked after I traced it with a pencil and next to that is how it looked after I traced over it roughly with brown paint.

Next I washed it with yellow paint.  I had a oil painting teacher tell me to always use a wash before starting your actual picture with paint.  The training has stuck with me.  Below is how it looked with a yellow wash.

I then started with the center of the flower and began dabbing brown paint so that the brush strokes of the wash would not show.  I added yellow dabs and later added orange.  

Then I put a second coat of yellow paint on my petals.  After that I added some orange low lights all around the edges of my petals.  (See below) I just roughly painted these in.  I like my paint to be “wet”.  It goes back to the days I painted in oils.  That paint would stay wet and we could blend for several days without it drying.  Now with acrylic you have to work fast or repeat your paint process.

This is how it looked when adding the orange but I would go back and add more yellow until I had the impressionism look I wanted.  I didn’t want it to look perfect like a photograph or cartoonish with just the outlines.  I wanted a blended and blurred sunflower leaner. The next picture is with one flower blended.  It is best to do one flower at a time before your paint dries.

 Below is the finished product.  I hope you like it.  Try it yourself.  Remember perfection is not the goal.  HAVE FUN!!

Sunflowers should be FUN!
Thanks for reading my blog post!

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