Rose Arbor Pathway Scene

Rose Arbor Pathway Scene

Posted by DecoArt on May 24th 2016

This delicate rose arbor highlights a lovely cottage and rolling landscape.


    • water container
    • palette or plastic plate
    • paper towels
    • tracing paper
    • #2 round brush
    • #6 flat brush
    • 1/2" stippler brush
    • #4 flat brush
    • 1/4" deerfoot stippler brush
    • plain white copy paper
    • 1/2" angle brush
    • canvas
    • #2 flat brush
    • white graphite paper
    • #1 script liner brush
    • 1" wash brush
    • #14 flat brush
    • 3/8" rake brush
    • grey graphite paper
    • frame
    • oval bristle brush


    1. Seal the canvas with two thin coats of White Gesso. (Thin slightly with water so that the weave of the canvas won’t be covered.) Let dry.
    2. Trace the stage 1 pattern and apply to the surface using grey graphite paper.
    3. Place Baby Blue, Snow White, and Dioxazine Purple on the palette. Using a large 1” wash brush, begin to paint from the top down to the horizon line with Baby Blue, adding Snow White to the mix as you reach the horizon line. Let dry and then repeat with Baby Blue, and then with Baby Blue and Snow White. (You want it light where the background trees will be painted.)
    4. While still wet, brush in a scant amount of Dioxazine Purple across the top of the canvas and soften into the Baby Blue. Let dry.
    5. Clouds: If you desire clouds, load the angle brush with Snow White and fluff in a few cloud shapes streaking at the bottom. Let dry and then add more Snow White to the tops of the peaks to highlight.
    6. Using Raw Sienna and a bit of Snow White (this will make it more opaque), use the #14 flat brush to paint in the path keeping the brush-strokes horizontal with the edges near the bottom and along the back edge a little jagged. Let dry and repeat for opaque coverage.
    7. Mix Avocado and Snow White 2:1 to make a medium light value; begin to under-paint in the grass areas keeping the brush-strokes clean next to the sky and then a bit jagged next to the lower part of the path and on the right portion. (This may take two coats.)
    8. Instruction #7
    9. Background trees: Place Jade Green, Avocado, Hauser Light Green, Snow White, Traditional Burnt Umber, and Midnite Green on the palette. Using the stipple brush, mix Jade Green with a bit of Snow White and load the brush, tapping it on the palette to distribute the paint throughout the bristles.
    10. Lightly tap in some tree shapes across the horizon line, keeping them irregular at the top. Place a sheet of paper over the grass areas to keep them clean as you stipple. (These trees go all across the horizon line.)
    11. Mix a bit of Avocado into Jade Green and tap again, but don’t cover all of the lighter values and keep the tops of the tree shapes light. (Try to create some tree shapes as you stipple.)
    12. Repeat with Avocado, but don’t cover all of the light areas. When finished, lightly float Midnite Green at the bottom of the trees at the horizon line to darken more.
    13. Using Traditional Burnt Umber thinned slightly with a script liner brush, paint in some tree trunks and upper branches randomly. (Just pick some spots for these as your tree shapes will differ from mine.)
    14. Tap in a few darker areas in the trees to shade if needed with Avocado or Avocado mixed with a bit of Midnite Green.
    15. Place a bit of Snow White mixed with Traditional Burnt Umber to add a few highlights to the left sides of the trunks and larger upper branches.
    16. Using Hauser Light Green and just a bit of Jade Green, tap on a few lighter highlights. (You could also add a bit of Hauser Light Green and a bit of Snow White at the tops.)
    17. Instruction #15
    18. House: Transfer the house pattern (#2) to the scene and basecoat the house sides with a 1:1 mix of Grey Sky and Snow White. Basecoat the roof with Zinc.
    19. Shade the house with about a 1:1 mix Grey Sky and Zinc. For the three sides away from the upper left light source, just paint this value over the sections.
    20. Let dry and then shade with about a 2:1 mix of Zinc and Grey Sky, floating under the eaves and along the sides and where sections connect at a corner. Let dry and then shade in the deepest areas with Zinc. Highlight the house with floats of Snow White along the front edges and the upper center portion of the largest section.
    21. Shade the roof with Graphite and then highlight with about a 2:1 mix of Zinc and Grey Sky. Add a final highlight with about a 1:1 mix of Zinc and Grey Sky. (After you have finished the entire scene, you might want to highlight again.)
    22. Using a #2 flat brush, basecoat the windows and door with Zinc. Add the mullions with a liner brush using a thinned about 1:1 mix of Grey Sky and Snow White. Outline the windows and door with Graphite. Add a small dot of Slate Grey to the door for a knob.
    23. Using a liner brush with a 1:1 mix of Grey Sky and Snow White, paint small parallel fence posts along the horizon line next to the house. (Try to keep them the same size and vertical with the surface.) Paint two thin lines to indicate the rails. Use Zinc to shade along the right edges of the posts.
    24. Path: Paint a small path leading up to the front door with a 3:1 mix of Raw Sienna and Snow White.
    25. Float some horizontal streaky shading along the sides of the path with Raw Sienna.
    26. Mix Traditional Burnt Umber and Raw Sienna 1:1 and use to deepen some of the shading along the sides of the path. Deepen these even more with Traditional Burnt Umber, keeping things streaky. (Let the path get lost at the horizon line.)
    27. Add some horizontal highlights with a 1:2 mix of Snow White and Raw Sienna, so it's not too bright.
    28. Cover the surrounding areas with a piece of paper and spatter over the path with Traditional Burnt Umber. Pat these spatters while wet to flatten them to create varied pebble shapes.
    29. Grasses: Use an oval bristle-type stipple brush for the background grasses. Load the brush in the desired value and work to spread the bristles a little, placing the brush on the canvas, holding it at a slight angle, and pushing it upward in short choppy strokes. (This may take a bit of practice. If you paint these with varied values overlapping each other, it will appear like field grass.) Use even shorter strokes next to the house.
    30. Use lighter values with Avocado and Hauser Light Green or Jade Green, and then add some lighter values with Cadmium Yellow and Raw Sienna and then Cadmium Yellow and a touch of Snow White for the light background grass next to the tree line. Use darker values as you paint over the lower grasses on the left side using straight Avocado and then adding Midnite Green to Avocado at the lower left edge and bottom.
    31. Add some lighter values randomly with a mix of Cadmium Yellow and Raw Sienna.
    32. Use lighter grass values at the front of the house and along the back of the path getting a bit darker behind the house and the area where you’ll paint the two larger trees.
    33. Using a deerfoot stippler brush, tap in some shrub shapes next to the house with Midnite Green. Tap over to highlight with Avocado and then Hauser Light Green near the front edges.
    34. Use a liner brush to paint the flowers on the shrubs. The red ones are Cranberry Wine, highlighted with a mix of Cranberry Wine and Snow White. The blue bushes are Prussian Blue dabs highlighted with Baby Blue. (You can also add a bit of Snow White to the ones in front of the house.)
    35. The individual grass blades you see along the path and at the front were painted later using the dark, medium, and light values with thinned paint and a script liner brush. The dark grass next to the tree trunks was painted after the two trees.
    36. Trees: Mix Traditional Burnt Umber with a bit of Midnite Green to darken. Use the mix and a #4 flat brush to paint the tree trunks and upper branches using the chisel edge brush. Save the mix for next step. Repeat to darken, if needed.
    37. Mix a bit of Snow White into the trunk mix from previous step; use the new mix and a liner brush with short choppy strokes to highlight. Add a bit more Snow White and highlight again, if needed, on the trunks.
    38. Stipple Midnite Green and Avocado over the upper branches to create leaf clumps, leaving some of the limbs showing and alternating the colors.
    39. Go over the upper branches with Avocado and Hauser Light Green and then again with Hauser Light Green. Add some final brighter highlights by adding Cadmium Yellow and a bit of Snow White to Hauser Light Green and tap some highlights on the left portion of the leafy clumps.
    40. Using a liner brush with Midnite Green and Avocado, dab in some shade next to the right sides of the tree trunks and pull up a few grasses in the shadow area and in front of the trees.
    41. Small flowers: Use a liner brush to paint some daisy-like flowers on the right edge of the left grass portion along the edges of the path.
    42. For the yellow daisy-like flowers, use a 1:2 mix of Raw Sienna and Cadmium Yellow and highlight some of them with Cadmium Yellow. The centers are Traditional Burnt Umber.
    43. For the white ones, mix Avocado with Snow White 1:2 to make a light green and use to paint the daisies. Highlight with Snow White. The centers are Raw Sienna and Traditional Burnt Umber.
    44. Use the stipple brush to lightly tap some yellow (with a 1:2 mix of Raw Sienna and Cadmium Yellow) and Avocado flowers in the background. (You can dab a bit with a liner brush to indicate individual flowers.)
    45. Pull some stem lines coming from the daisy-like flowers with Avocado and a mix of Avocado and Midnite Green. Pull a few little leaves along the stems.
    46. Use Avocado, a 1:2 mix of Avocado and Midnite Green, and Hauser Light Green to paint grass among the daisies and along the path. (Vary the height and direction of the grass.)
    47. Hydrangea bushes: Loosely transfer the shape of the bushes (pattern #3) on both sides of the path with white graphite paper.
    48. Using a #6 flat brush, begin to paint leaf shapes in all directions with Midnite Green. (These leaves are painted with one stroke. Press, pull, and lift the brush pulling it to a chisel edge. These don’t have to be perfect leaves.)
    49. When finished, add some leaves in and around and over these with Avocado and then a Avocado and Hauser Light Green mix. (I kept the lighter ones away from the edges.) Add some brighter leaf shapes with Hauser Light Green.
    50. Using a deerfoot stippler brush, paint some random round shapes in random locations with Blue Violet and Prussian Blue over the shrubs.
    51. Mix Blue Violet and Baby Blue 1:1 and use to tap on highlights on the upper left portion. For those near the top or left portions of the clumps, highlight with Baby Blue and then the ones at the very top or facing the light source with Baby Blue and Snow White. Dab in a few 4-petal shapes to simulate the hydrangea petals.
    52. Instruction #49
    53. Arbor: Transfer the arbor from pattern #3 to the surface and carefully basecoat with about a 1:1 mix of Grey Sky and Snow White. (This will likely take two coats.)
    54. Using scant amounts of Zinc on the tip of an angle brush, shade on the supports and rails leaving some light edges.
    55. Apply this shading more than once as needed. (Think about where the light source will hit the arbor. Generally the left sides and upper edges are kept light.)
    56. Use the chisel edge of the angle brush or a liner brush to add Snow White highlights to the edges facing the upper left portion of the design.
    57. Transfer the vine, if needed, or simply paint one free-handed, intertwining around and between the rails and supports of the trellis. (Use a mix of Traditional Burnt Umber with a touch of Midnite Green.) When finished, add Snow White to the mix and add highlights on the left and upper edges.
    58. Instruction #54
    59. Using a #2 flat brush, paint some 1-stroke leaves randomly along the vine using Midnite Green and Hauser Light Green. (You can use Avocado over the darker areas at the bottom along with Hauser Light Green so that they will show up better.)
    60. Roses: Mix Snow White into Cranberry Wine 2:1 to make a medium pink value. As you basecoat the roses, brush mix a little Snow White into a few to make them lighter randomly. Paint these loose circular shapes all along the vine and among the leaves you painted. (You can add a few little dabs for buds if you like.)
    61. Shade inside the mouth of the roses with Cranberry Wine, having them face in different directions. (I just loaded a bit on my angle brush and floated them on.)
    62. Use the angle brush to float Snow White highlights around the mouth of the roses. (Use short choppy strokes around the rose to indicate outer petals. You could also do this with a small round or liner brush. It might help to practice a few so you get the hang of it. )
    63. Add some more leaves around the roses and go over some to add highlights with Hauser Light Green.
    64. Pull some grass in front of the rose bush and the hydrangea bushes using Hauser Light Green and Midnite Green.
    65. Using all the green values, paint some more grass in front of the rose arbor on the left side and pull more on the right side if needed.
    66. Optional: Add three little flying birds in the sky with Zinc and a liner brush.
    67. Finishing: Evaluate the design to see if you need any further shading or highlighting. (You might want to add more flowers in the grass area or grass next to the path.)
    68. Finish off canvas with three light coats of DuraClear Matte Varnish to protect the canvas. (Let dry between coats.) Select a light wooden or painted frame to enhance the painting.


    Arbor Pattern
    Landscape Pattern #1
    Landscape Pattern #2