Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Thyme to show you a Citrus Snickle

I wanted to show you
how to make

The design for this project is by Cynthia Erekson

Let's head inside the STUDIO and get started!

My Palette

Medium Flesh, Light Buttermilk, Payne's Grey, Antique Gold Deep, Spiced Pumpkin, Burnt Orange, Traditional Burnt Umber, Gingerbread, Navy Blue, Burnt Sienna, Brandywine, Milk Chocolate, Mustard Seed, Antique White, Camel, Uniform Blue, Antique Green, Autumn Red, Plantation Pine, Buttermilk, Lamp Black


I used an 18" square unprimed heavy floor cloth canvas for this project

I used a 2" foam brush to apply  GESSO

I let the first coat of GESSO dry well then I applied a second coat .

Let dry completely!

I used a sponge brush to base coat over the GESSO with Navy Blue

Let the first coat of Navy Blue dry then apply a second coat.

Trace your pattern and transfer the outer line defining Santa's shape. 
Add details as needed.

I began by painting the face then adding the eyes.

Base coat the beard.

I am now base coating the stocking and mittens.
I have painted the arms and dry brushed the highlighted areas.

Adding detail to the stocking.

I have now added detail to the hat and cuffs.
I have base coated the oranges and started to shade between them to separate them.
I often dry brush highlights in for a softer look

are perfect for this!

I have started painting the lemon garland.

I am painting the leaves and nutmeg on the garland.
I have painted the additional detail on the lemons.
I like to use Silver Brush Ltd. Ultra mini's for detail work.
I have also started adding the beard hairs and facial detail.

When painting a beard be patient! 
Layer your values so there is some contrast.
I began by undercoating the beard with Antique White. I then added Camel hairs sparsely to determine direction of hair growth. This also adds contrast. I then began adding Buttermilk hairs followed by Light Buttermilk hairs. I left some background and Camel hairs showing for contrast.

I have added the cloves to the oranges and started to paint the leaves and berries.

I obtain the subtle shading on the mittens, arms, stocking and cheeks by dry brushing with my
The brushes are very soft and make it very easy to almost "dust on" color where you need it for highlights.

Thyme to SPATTER!
I covered Santa's face when I spattered.

*** To easily spatter pour out about a dime size puddle of paint on your palette. Dip a large stencil brush in water, blot it on your paper towel lightly. Then circle your brush in the paint on your palette. Use your palette knife to gently pull thru the bristles of your brush. ***

The end result should be a nice fine spatter!

Now to glue the Santa together.
I use Arlene's Thick Designer Tacky Glue ( in the jar)
I spread the glue evenly in the space to the left of my design. The glue should meet but not go over the glue line.

I then roll the canvas into a cone shape overlapping the right side of the canvas so the cut shape just meets the glue line. This step is important so that your wooden base will fit the bottom of the cone!

Lay the cone down with the glued area on the bottom. Press the canvas together securely by rubbing inside the cone along the glued line. You can secure the cone with clamps or elastics till your glue sets.

Once your glue has set stuff the interior of the cone well to give it a heftiness. Leave a 1/2" space at the bottom of the cone for the wood base. Spread a thin layer of glue onto the inner 1/2" space of canvas. Press on the outside of the cone to securely adhere the base to the canvas.

To hide the unfinished top of cone I attached 2 rusty stars. You can clamp them together until the glue sets.

I applied 2 light coats of 

to my Santa.

The varnishes come in many finishes so the choice is yours for the look you want.

Let the varnish dry completely between coats to avoid clouding!

Here is my finished 


provided me with the paints to complete this project as part of their 
Helping Artist and Blogger Outreach Programs

Thank you DecoArt for all the wonderful products to create with!

I hope you have enjoyed watching me paint
 Citrus Santa!

Happy Painting!



  1. What a wonderful project, thanks for sharing!

  2. I love this. I always enjoy seeing what you are up to and only wish I could be there to join in the fun! Thank you so much for sharing.

  3. I love the toy maker nutcracker. I've been looking through the internet for additional nutcrackers I can buy. I miss Zim's, but I still have their catalog for ideas. Also love your canvas Santa.


Keep those brushes flying!
Lynn Barbadora @ Painting Thyme Needfuls

"Life is a great BIG canvas and you should throw all the paint you can on it!"
~ Danny Kaye