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How to Paint Grass for Beginners: Easy Guided Practice for Successful Landscapes

Today, we’re going to delve into the art of grass painting for beginners. This skill is a game-changer when it comes to creating beautiful landscape paintings. By mastering grass painting techniques, you’ll be able to focus on more complex elements like clouds, which often challenge beginners. So, let’s get started on this guided practice to explore different brushes and the unique effects they produce for painting grass.

Before We Begin

Painting of a full moon over the ocean with silhouettes of trees in the foreground and a grassy cliff.

“The Gathering” by Sara Dorey (acrylic on stretched canvas)

Before diving into the practice, let’s cover a few essential points:

  • Regardless of the brush you choose, the stroke technique remains the same. Plant the brush on the surface and flick it upward. The only variables are the direction and pressure you apply.
  • Aim for natural imperfection in your grass. Real grass grows in all directions, heights, colors, and thicknesses. Embrace a loose and effortless approach.
  • Avoid painting grass in a straight line with blades pointing uniformly. It will appear unnatural and disappointingly flat.
  • Experiment with the placement of highlights and shadows. Instead of limiting them to specific areas, scatter them unexpectedly to depict lush and full grass.

Gather Your Tools

Paint used for grass painting: Hooker's Green, Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue, Ultramarine Blue, Mars Black, Titanium White.

For this guided practice, gather the following:

  • Any surface for painting (even printer paper works)
  • One or more of the following brushes:
    • Round brush
    • Angle brush
    • Flat brush
    • Fuzzed-out old angle brush
    • Fan brush
    • Deerfoot stippler
  • Paint colors (you can use what you have):
    • Hooker’s Green (Liquitex Basics)
    • Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue (Liquitex Basics)
    • Ultramarine Blue (Liquitex Basics)
    • Mars Black (Liquitex Basics)
    • Titanium White (Golden)
  • Jar of water
  • Old rag for drying your brush

How to Paint Grass for Beginners

Painting Grass with a Fan Brush

Grass painted using a fan brush.

Let’s start with the fan brush, although it’s not my personal favorite. While some artists swear by it, I find it a bit awkward to use (as evident in the photo above, haha). Nevertheless, it’s worth mentioning and giving it a try, especially if you’re a hidden fan brush expert. Opt for a fan brush with stiff bristles to maintain form and prevent smearing.


  • Load your dry brush with green paint, making sure not to overload it (cover only the bottom part of the bristles).
  • Hold the brush with the tip of the bristles facing downward and horizontally.
  • Plant the brush and flick it upward.
  • When following this technique, your brush should be completely off the surface at the end.
  • For longer grass, use the shortest bristles of the brush vertically.
  • Vary the pressure and brush angle for a more natural and non-uniform grass appearance.


  • Dip your brush into a bit of yellow paint and mix it with the green.
  • Gradually add white to the yellow-green mixture, creating a light lime green shade.
  • Continue using the plant and flick technique but with lighter pressure and shorter strokes.
  • Be mindful of using the highlight color sparingly, maintaining visibility of the initial green layer.


  • Wipe most of the paint off your brush using an old rag.
  • Mix a small amount of blue with green to achieve a cool green shade.
  • Introduce a tiny amount of black to deepen the blue-green shadow color.
  • Repeat the instructions from Step 2, ensuring not to overuse this shade and risk covering your previous work.

How to Paint Grass for Beginners Using a Deerfoot Stippler

Painted green grass with yellow highlights using a deerfoot stippler brush.

A deerfoot stippler brush is a valuable tool that often goes unnoticed. It is particularly useful for painting grassy mounds, like those found in desert landscapes or rocky terrains with scattered patches of grass. While it’s not a mandatory brush for beginners, consider investing in one when your budget allows. This sturdy brush with short angled bristles excels in scrubbing and stippling.


  • Use a dry brush and scrub green paint onto the bristles in circular motions.
  • Avoid using excessive paint to prevent a blob-like appearance.
  • Hold the brush with the longest part of the angled bristles pointing downward and closest to you.
  • Plant and flick using varying pressure to create grass of different thicknesses.


  • Keep your brush dry and continue the scrubbing circular motion, this time mixing green, yellow, and white for the highlight color.
  • Apply the same technique as in Step 1, but with lighter pressure and shorter strokes.
  • Pause occasionally to determine where the light should hit for a realistic effect.
  • Repeat until you’re satisfied with the highlights.


  • Clean your brush as thoroughly as possible and mix a shadow color using green, blue, and a tiny amount of black.
  • Employ the same scrubbing circular motion as in Step 2.
  • Continuously use the same technique, but this time restrict the shadows to the bottom of the grass and other areas where shadows naturally occur.

How to Paint Grass with a Fuzzy Angle Brush

Painted grass with a fuzzy angle brush.

When it comes to grass painting for beginners, an angle brush with fuzzy and flared-out bristles is your easiest option. This brush effortlessly produces natural-looking grass due to its unique bristle arrangement. Despite its beaten-up appearance, your weathered brush still holds value.


  • Wet your brush and remove excess water.
  • Load the brush with green paint and hold it so that the bristle ends are horizontal.
  • Plant the brush and flick with light pressure, changing the angle and direction of your strokes.
  • To create long grass, add a small amount of water to the longest bristles, tap off any excess, load green paint, and plant the brush vertically with the tip closest to you. Flick upward using light pressure for longer strokes.


  • Mix your highlight color using green, yellow, and white.
  • Dampen only the TIP of the longest bristles, shaking off any excess water.
  • Load the brush with a small amount of highlight color.
  • Turn the brush vertically with only the longest bristles touching the painting surface and closest to you.
  • Apply very light pressure while planting and flicking (the length of the stroke determines the grass height).


  • Prepare a shadow color by mixing green, blue, and a hint of black.
  • Continue using the same directions as in Step 2, considering where shadows would naturally fall.
  • Avoid excessive shadows if your grass is meant to be in full daylight.
  • Experiment with shadow placement in unexpected areas to indicate twists in the grass blades.

How to Paint Grass for Beginners: Angle Brush

Green grass painted with an angle brush featuring a sharp edge.

Let’s differentiate between a fuzzy angle brush and a newer angle brush with a crisp edge. When painting grass with an angle brush, you can follow the same instructions as previously mentioned for the fuzzed-out angle brush. Both brushes work alike, but the newer angle brush requires a bit more effort to create grasses.

Painting Grass with a Flat Brush

Grass painting accomplished with a flat brush.

Using a flat brush to paint grass presents some challenges. As shown in the photo above, achieving a natural look can be difficult. However, there are specific scenarios where a flat brush can be useful. For instance, if you wish to paint a well-maintained lawn or golf course greens, a flat brush can provide a uniformity that other brushes lack. Additionally, by turning the brush vertically, you can paint straighter-looking long grass. When using a flat brush for grass, I recommend using a different brush for highlights and shadows, such as the deerfoot stippler to create shorter grass effects.

Using a Round Brush to Paint Grass for Beginners

Tall, defined grass created with a round brush.

I particularly enjoy using a round brush when painting the silhouette of grass. It works wonders for long grasses like marsh grass and beach grass, as portrayed in the image above. The well-defined yet natural appearance of the grass comes to life with a round brush. While I wouldn’t suggest using this brush for extensive grass areas due to time constraints, it’s an excellent choice for beginner grass painting. I highly recommend trying it out!


  • Dip your round brush into the water jar and gently remove any excess water.
  • Push your brush into the green paint, rolling it between your thumb, index, and middle finger to create a sharp point on the brush tip.
  • Place the brush tip gently on the painting surface and lightly drag it upward, reducing pressure gradually from bottom to top.
  • Experiment with different pressure levels to achieve thin or thick grass.
  • Twist the brush while dragging to create bends and twists in the grass.
  • Vary your brush grip, holding it close to the bristles or further back, to paint grass with different textures.


  • Using your green, yellow, and white paints, create a highlight mixture.
  • Dampen only the tip of the round brush in water and shake off excess.
  • Load your brush with a small amount of the highlight color.
  • Position the brush vertically, allowing only the longest bristles to touch the painting surface and closest to you.
  • Apply very light pressure while planting and flicking the brush (longer strokes result in longer grass).
  • Consider the placement of light in relation to the sun’s position.
  • Avoid painting the full length of the grass with highlights to prevent a racing stripe effect.
  • Experiment with highlights and shadows to portray bends and twists in tall grass.


  • Create a shadow color by mixing your green, blue, and a small amount of black (use black sparingly).
  • Continue using the same technique as in Step 2.
  • Note that shadows should appear on the opposite side of the highlights.
  • Avoid painting continuous stripes from the bottom to the top with shadows.
  • Play with shadow placement in unexpected areas to depict twists in grass blades.

YouTube Recommendations:

Dry grass with a path leading to a beach and a lake.
Here are some helpful YouTube tutorials for your reference:

  • “Acrylic Painting: How to Paint Tall Grass Quick and Easy” – Studio Silver Creek
  • “Rustic Spring – Step by Step Acrylic Painting on Canvas for Beginners” – Painting With Jane
  • “Sand Dunes Beach Sunset Seascape” – Angela Anderson

Summing Up Different Ways To Paint Grass

Many people, especially beginners, wonder how to paint grass effectively. Grass painting can seem overwhelming due to its simplicity, but fear not! By incorporating length, direction, shadows, and highlights, you can bring your grass to life. With practice, you’ll soon be painting grass like a pro!

More Articles To Help You Paint Landscapes:

If you’re eager to expand your landscape painting skills, check out these additional articles:

  • Paint a Forest of Pine Trees
  • Paint a Beautiful Sunset
  • Make the Perfect Green Grass Color

Now, go ahead and share your progress with your fellow artists and embrace the joy of painting!

Alexia Young

Hello and welcome to the world of Alexia. I am a passionate and dedicated artist who loves to create beautiful, mesmerizing art for everyone's walls. I believe in the importance of encouraging people to express their creativity and be happy.

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