Forget-Me-Nots & Dragonfly Canvas

By  Robin Mani 

size: 8"x8"x1-1/2"


  • Canvas board, 8”x8”x1-1/2”


  • Loew-Cornell Paintbrushes: Series 270 Mop 1/4” or 3/8”; Series 00JS Jackie Shaw Liner #2; Series 7050 Script Liner 10/0; Series 7300 Flat Shader #6; Series 7400 Angular Shaders 1/4”, 3/88”, 1/2”, 3/4”; Series 7500 Filbert #2, 4, 6, 8
  • Double-ended stylus
  • Sea sponge
  • DecoArt Americana Acrylic Paints: Dioxazine Purple, Hauser Dark Green, Mistletoe, Primary Yellow, Prussian Blue, Salem Blue, Snow White, True Blue, True Red, Turquoise Blue, Yellow Light; Easy Float; Duraclear Matte Varnish

Basic Supplies

  • palette, palette knife, transparent ruler, gray and white graphite paper, paper towels, white eraser, black fine-tip marker, newspaper (to cover work surface)

Pattern - Forget-Me-Nots & Dragonfly Canvas

  • 1. Note: Refer to Worksheet for painting each step.
  • 2. Make (3:1) mixture of Snow White + Salem Blue on palette using palette knife. Basecoat canvas mixture using dampened sponge, continuing color onto side edges of canvas. Let dry. Apply second coat; while paint is still wet, pounce sponge into Snow White and on palette; lightly sponge Snow White randomly on canvas. Let dry.
  • 3. Print out pattern. Trace design onto tracing paper using marker. Transfer checkered border onto canvas using gray graphite. (Note: Use stylus and transparent ruler to keep lines straight.) When finished, lightly transfer main pattern lines for leaves, stems, flowers, and dragonfly onto canvas using gray graphite. Transfer details as needed.
  • Checked Border
  • 1. Add small amount of water to Snow White to make semi-transparent wash. Wash border on canvas using flat shader.
  • 2. Starting at one corner, paint every other check Turquoise Blue wash. Float shade (2:1) mixture of Salem Blue + Turquoise Blue around both outside edges of border. Outline both side edges of border with same mixture.
  • Leaves
  • 1. Basecoat leaves Mistletoe with 3/8" angular shader. Using same brush, float shade (2:1) mixture of Hauser Dark Green + Mistletoe to bottom of leaves. (Note: Leaves on bottom of buds are painted same colors as larger leaves.)
  • 2. Add vein lines and outline bottom of leaves with shade mix using script liner.
  • 3. Float highlights on top edges of leaves and outline with (2:1) mixture of Yellow Light + Mistletoe. Repeat with Yellow Light.
  • Stems
  • 1. Line stems with (2:1) mixture of Mistletoe + Hauser Dark Green using JS liner.
  • 2. Using same brush, shade bottom side of stems (2:1) mixture of Hauser Dark Green + Mistletoe. Shade where stems connect to flowers. Darken shading where needed by adding touch of Dioxazine Purple into mixture.
  • 3. Drybrush highlight lines along top edges of stems Yellow Light.
  • Flowers
  • 1. Note: Use #6 filbert for stroking in smaller flower petals and #8 filbert for larger flowers.
  • 2. Stroke in all flower petals (2:1) mixture of Snow White + True Blue.
  • 3. Float shade around bottom of each petal (1:1) mixture of True Blue + Prussian Blue using 3/8" angular shader.
  • 4. Line around petals and pull detail lines from centers onto each petal with same mix using script liner.
  • 5. Float shade bottom of each petal Prussian Blue to darken.
  • 6. Drybrush highlights on petal edges Turquoise Blue using small filbert. Wipe brush on paper towel. Pick up Salem Blue on dirty brush, wipe on paper towel, and drybrush highlights on petals. Repeat with Snow White.
  • 7. Paint flower centers Primary Yellow; float shade True Red around inside bottom of each center. Outline around centers Prussian Blue.
  • 8. Tap Snow White dots around centers using stylus. Tap single white dot in very center; let dry and tap in smaller True Red dot on top, pushing hard to make slight indentation.
  • Dragonfly
  • 1. Paint body, head, and eyes (2:1) mixture of Snow White + True Blue.
  • 2. Line stripes Mistletoe; drybrush highlights Yellow Light.
  • 3. Drybrush area between stripes and head Turquoise Blue; lighten with Snow White.
  • 4. Dot Mistletoe eyes; let dry. Tap smaller dot of Primary Yellow, pushing hard to make indentation. Highlight with tiny Snow White dot.
  • 5. Mix sheer wash of Snow White. Wash wings; let dry. Very lightly float Turquoise Blue under center line of each wing using 1/4" angular shader. Float under top edge of each wing (1:1) mixture of Primary Yellow + Mistletoe.
  • 6. Outline body and wings with (2:1) mixture of Snow White + True Blue. Float Turquoise Blue to shade area next to body on wings. Darken outline of wings near body Prussian Blue using liner.
  • 7. Add Mistletoe antennae; highlight Yellow Light.
  • Finishing
  • 1. Erase graphite lines.
  • 2. Add sheer tints throughout by putting extra water on brush and pinhead of color on brush corner; blend well on palette. Float Dioxazine Purple mainly under bottom of leaves, flowers, and dragonfly. Add tints randomly on petals. Float corners. Pull color and soften water edges with mop.
  • 3. Sheer tint top sides of flowers and randomly throughout Turquoise Blue.
  • 4. Sheer tint tops of large leaves, some flowers, and dragonfly Primary Yellow.
  • 5. When completely dry, apply three coats of varnish. Let dry.
  • Tip
  • 1. Use angular brushes to float shading and highlighting. Load small amount of paint on corner of brush then blend very well on palette. Go over float several times, making sure it is dry between floats. Soften water edge on floats with mop brush.
  • 2. Adding Easy Float to water makes both floating and line work easier.