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Step by Step Oil Painting - How to paint Sunsets Art Gallery Step by Step - Colorful Fine Art : Art; Colorful Sunsets; Colorful Sunset Original Oil Paintings on Canvas, by Gina De Gorna; Colorful Sunset Art; Colorful Sunset Artworks, Colorful Art Works of Sunsets; Colorful Sunset Wall Art; Colorful Sunset Original Paintings for Your Home; Colorful Modern Sunset Paintings; Colorful Contemporary Sunset Paintings

How to Paint Colorful Sunsets STEP BY STEP:


How do I do it and how long does it take?

How to Paint a Colorful Sunset Oil Painting?

Please Enjoy:

Oil Painting INDIGO Sunset Seascape, Canvas on Board, 18x24",  by Gina De Gorna

Materials for the Sunset Oil Painting:

1. Stretched Primed Canvas or Canvas on Board suitable for oil Paintings. 
2. FLAT Bristle Oil Painting Brushes: 2'' and smaller.
3. Metal Pallet Knife.
4. Oil Paint Colors: Titanium White; Cobalt Blue; Ultramarine Blue; Light Yellow; Orange; Alizarin Crimson.
5. Medium dark flat purple acrylic paint.
6. The softest 2" flat brush you can find in a craft store. 
7. Paper Towels.
8. Disposable pallet, disposable gloves and disposable apron so you don't have to clean the pallet and yourself longer than you paint, but to focus only on the FUN PART of the painting process :)

1. Follow the Step by Step instructions.
2. There's no need to dilute or pre-mix the oil paints. Remember: over mixing oil paint results in muddy and grayish look of a painting.
3. Use the recommended brush strokes for each STEP.
4. Do not overdo things. Overworking is never good for a painting.
5. Enjoy painting SUNSETS and Have FUN :)))

Establishing background Under Color, Horizon Line and Light Source are extremely important for the overall look of the painting.

Apply Medium dark flat purple acrylic paint to the entire canvas surface with the 2" brush and let the canvas and the brush dry completely! When the surface is dry, establish the HORIZON LINE and the light source - the SUN. Use a small brush with dark color for the Horizon line of the painting  and use pure white paint for the sun.

Tips: Use X brush strokes to smooth the under color. Do not under estimate the precise placement of the Horizon and the Sun. This will save you time and struggle later. If you have to, use measuring tape and a long straight wood piece like a ruler for the Horizon.

How to Paint Colorful Sunset Oil Paintings: STEP TWO:
Establishing basic sketch/idea of darks and lights is very important for the BALANCE of the painting.

Apply  the darkest and the lightest spots/ lines by using smaller flat brush or a pallet knife.

Tips: Use loose strokes and do not dilute the paint.

How to Paint Colorful Sunset Oil Paintings: STEP THREE:
Establishing the BACKGROUND Colors.

Apply all COLORS for the Background of the whole painting with a brush or a pallet knife. The strokes must follow the lines of the composition. Use only Cobalt Blue Paint for the sky and white; orange and yellow around the sun. 

Tips: Use unmixed colors and do not dilute the paint.

How to Paint Colorful Sunset Oil Paintings: STEP FOUR:

The purpose of this step is to blend the colors/ the oil paint of the Backgrounds both for the sky and for the sea.  The sky needs a smooth background for the clouds to float and the Sea needs a blended background colors for the ripples and the highlights. The background should be nice and light.  Use the pallet knife to take any excess/ thick paint from the surface of the painting.

1. Do not overwork the blending. 
2. At this point,  clean often the brushes with paper towels;  NOT in turpentine!
3. Use appropriate brush strokes to give direction of the paint.
4. Use big clean brush with very light strokes for the final blending of the painting.

How to Paint Colorful Sunset Oil Paintings: STEP FIVE:
Applying fresh oil paint for clouds and foreground. 

Here you must think cloud shapes, ripples, reflections and highlights. Use Ultramarine Blue and Alizarin Crimson to shape the clouds. Now you may pre-mix yellow, orange and white to get the peach color. Use the edge of a Pallet Knife to put light color paint for highlights and white at the sun and the lightest highlights.

1.  Use darker colors at the corners of the painting. This helps to focus easily at the focal point - THE SUN and its rays and reflections.
2. Do not over highlight! Choose carefully where to put the lightest highlights.

How to Paint Colorful Sunset Oil Paintings: STEP SIX:
Blending the oil paint and shaping puffy clouds by pushing the corner of a big bristle brush.  If you put too much paint, or if you overworked some part, scrape it out with the knife and reapply fresh paint.

1. Do not overwork the clouds. Otherwise they'll look muddy and heavy. 
2. Do not overkill the highlights. If you do so, reapply fresh paint.
3. Use very light circle motions to blend with the softest brush possible. Clean the brush often with a paper towel.
4. Absolutely no hard edges in the sky. The sky and clouds must be soften well in order to look in the distance. 

How to Paint Colorful Sunset Oil Paintings: STEP SEVEN:
Establishing FOREGROUND details of the Sunset Oil Painting is important for the Perspective. The light soft clouds at the back NEED sharp contrasting edges and sparkles for the foreground.

1. Do not over blend the foreground of the painting.
2. Use the long edge of the pallet knife for the ripples and highlights.

How to Paint Colorful Sunset Oil Paintings - LAST STEP:
After the oil paint of the painting has dried, readjusting of overall Balance and light touches may be done to fix some details by applying and blending more paint. 

Sign your oil painting with a long thin round brush with some very diluted paint or just use a permanent marker. 

Retouch Varnish may be applied for protection of the Oil Painting. This Retouch Varnish allows the oil painting to further dry and at the same time it provides some luster and protection for the oil paint.  

1. Do not overdo the finishing touches, otherwise you may lose the painting :(
2. Practice your signature first before applying it with paint. 

PLEASE NOTE: Oil paints need 6 months to dry in full. Only after 6 months, some OIL PAINTING FINISH VARNISH may be applied for further protection of the Oil Paintings. You may purchase both Retouch Varnish and OIL PAINTING FINISH VARNISH at any Craft Store.


Also, I'd like to add that I'm very happy when my Sunsets and/or any of my other Oil Paintings inspire anyone to paint.  
Sunsets, Abstracts or Whatever...
For More information on my Oil Paintings; Private Art Opinion or Tutoring,
Feel free to drop me a line, or just let me see your sunset oil paintings :)
Please send an e-mail to:

How to Paint Sunsets Books, Step by Step Painting Sunsets, Instructional Book on Painting Sunsets in Oil and Acrylic; Paint Your Own Beautiful Sunset Paintings:


Enjoy painting beautiful sunsets with the help of Gina De Gorna instructional step by step books on painting realistic and/or abstract sunset paintings in oil or acrylic. No previous experience necessary. 

Sunset books include images of original sunset art, by Gina De Gorna.

How to Paint Tropical Sunsets, Step by Step is an art book for painting tropical sunsets. This book includes a list of the necessary art materials and step by step instructions and tips about painting tropical sunsets, original sunset  artworks,  and sunset reference photos. The book How to Paint Tropical Sunsets, Step by Step is available for purchase in

How to Paint Abstract Sunsets, Step by Step is an art book for painting abstract sunsets. The book includes a list of the necessary art materials, tips and instructions on how to paint abstract sunset paintings. It is illustrated with original sunset artworks, by Gina De Gorna. The book How to Paint Abstract Sunsets, Step by Step is available for purchase in

The book See the Sunset contains a story and poems and is illustrated with original sunset paintings, by Gina De Gorna. The book See the Sunset  is available for purchase in

For any questions, please contact the artist at: