How to paint a robin in 8 easy steps.... revisited

How to paint a robin in 8 easy steps.... revisited

Hi all so I revisiting this blog a wrote a few years ago now, it has proven to be one of my most popular blogs and maybe one you'd like to try in the run up to Christmas


I have been so busy running around , waiting in queues at the post office. Trying to get cards done, and as I flick through my old address book I encountered names and crossings out...people who are no longer with us or friends I don't see. It made me think how fragile 'now' is, lets make the most of it, say the things you want to say to people .Wear that top you've been saving for never know.

I also want to make the most of 'here' as well as 'now'

A walk in a lovely Devon wood

A long look up through the old branches, what has this old tree 'seen', who else has passed this way ?

Decades past this tree has stood here, and we can only marvel at it's endurance.

Savouring a sunset on a fine cold crisp Devon Day , 

As we head towards the shortest day, and hold the ones we love closer, these are the things I want to savour...oh yes and the odd mince pie !


So take some time out and have a go at my little robin , have fun x


Step 1

Draw your robin.....

Step 2

Paint the eye, remember to leave some light in the eye and add some very dark darks.

Step 3 

Paint his red breast, which isn't just red but yellow , orange and browny red, blend and add the colours until you are happy.

Step 4

Add some blue then merge to the brown of the wings. 

Step 5

Keep going

blending and maybe flicking some paint as you go

Step 6

Add the legs  feet and the branch, using a purple made from cobalt blue and cadmium red.

Step 7

Add snow ( it is nearly Christmas after all).

Step 8

Add any finishing touches, I like to rub out pencil lines and step back from the work to check the colours .

Your robin is done x


Back to blog


Brilliant step by step guide. Can’t wait to have a go


Leuk geoefend met aquarel

Mieke Van Gelderen

I enjoyed trying your robin today, thank you.

Jo Connor

It was lovely thank you, just what I needed to help make a card for a dear friend.


Personally I find that snow flakes can be achieved by either splattering with masking fluid before any paint hits the paper or splattering with opaque white gouache at the end. Snow on the ground is rarely white. Use blue ir pink shadows depending on the overal light and feel of your painting 3D effect is obtained by tonal difference between shadowed areas and lighter areas. Darks dark, lights light and a soft transition between the two on a bird. I love the list and found edges on the breast and underside of the bird.


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