Step-by-Step Guide to Creating Your Own Custom Paint by Number Art

Creating custom paint by number art is a fulfilling project that combines the joys of painting and personalized design. It’s a unique way to transform your favorite photographs into painted masterpieces, even if you’re not traditionally skilled with a brush. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the process from start to finish, ensuring that by the end, you’ll have a beautiful piece of art to display or gift. Whether you’re a seasoned artist or a newcomer to the world of paint by numbers custom, this tutorial will equip you with everything you need to know to create a custom piece.

What You Will Need:

  • A digital photograph or image
  • Computer and printer
  • Paint by number conversion software or app
  • Canvas (size depends on your preference)
  • Acrylic paints in various colors
  • Paintbrushes in different sizes
  • A cup of water and cloth or paper towels for cleaning brushes
  • Picture frame (optional)

Selecting Your Image

The first step in creating a custom paint by number artwork is selecting the right image. High-contrast photos with clear subjects work best. Think about choosing an image that is meaningful to you, like a family portrait, a pet, a landscape from a memorable vacation, or any moment captured in a photo that you love. Once you’ve selected your image, ensure it’s in a digital format for easy manipulation in the next steps.

Converting Your Image

To convert your chosen image into a paint by number template, you’ll need to use a conversion software or app. Many free and paid software options are available online, such as PBNify, Colorkit, or Rapid Resizer. Upload your image to the chosen platform and follow the instructions to convert it. During this process, you can often customize how many colors you want to use and adjust the complexity of your design. Keep in mind, the less detailed and fewer colors, the easier it will be to paint, though more colors and detail will result in a more nuanced final artwork.

Preparing Your Canvas

Once you have your template, it’s time to transfer it onto your canvas. You can print the converted image on a large sheet of paper to match the size of your canvas. If your printer does not support larger formats, you can print sections and piece them together. Lay the template over your canvas and use a graphite or transfer paper to trace the design onto the canvas. Ensure you mark each section with its corresponding number as indicated on your template.

Choosing Your Paints

With your template ready to go, it’s time to select your paints. Based on the color palette generated by your conversion tool, gather acrylic paints that match. For each color, you may choose to buy individual paints or mix them yourself to get the exact shades needed. Label each paint with numbers corresponding to those on your canvas for easy reference during painting.

Start Painting

Before dipping your brush into paint, plan your painting process. It’s generally easier to start from the top of the canvas and work your way down to prevent smudging. Also, painting from the darkest colors to the lightest tones can help maintain the clarity of your vision. Fill in each area with the corresponding paint, being careful not to overlap the lines. This process requires patience and a steady hand, but watching your custom image come to life is incredibly rewarding.

Touch-up and Finish

After completing your initial pass, take a step back and review your work. You may notice some areas that need touch-ups or additional layers of paint for even coverage. Once you’re satisfied with your masterpiece, allow it to dry completely. To preserve your artwork, you can seal it with a clear acrylic sealer, which will add a protective coat and enhance the colors.


Framing your finished paint by number artwork is optional but highly recommended. A frame not only gives your painting a polished look but also protects it. Choose a frame that complements the size of your canvas and matches the style of your painting. Once framed, find the perfect spot to hang your creation or prepare it as a heartfelt gift.


Creating a custom paint by number art piece is a rewarding process that allows you to craft a one-of-a-kind masterpiece. It’s a perfect blend of creativity and personalization, making it an excellent project for artists and non-artists alike. By following these detailed steps, you can transform any photo into a stunning painted artwork. Remember, the key to a successful paint by number is patience and enjoyment in the process. Happy painting!

By crafting your own custom paint by number art, you not only have a personalized masterpiece to adorn your walls but also experience the profound satisfaction of creating something beautiful with your own hands. Whether for yourself or as a thoughtful gift, these uniquely crafted artworks stand as a testament to creativity and the timeless appeal of personalized art.

If this guide has inspired you to start your painting adventure, we’d love to hear about your experience and see your finished artworks. Share your stories and creations with us, and join the vibrant community of custom paint by number artists exploring this fascinating intersection of technology, art, and personal expression.


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