Can you paint with acrylics on paper? Of course, and you’re going to love it! I created this sketchbook painting tutorial to help walk you through the process of painting in acrylic in a sketchbook, start to finish, and to answer some FAQs that you may have about dry time, mediums, gesso, and more. This video features a tutorial for painting water and waves at sunset using acrylic paint on paper. I’m excited to welcome you to my home studio space and introduce you to the colourful world of acrylic sketchbooks, and as a bonus I’m giving you my reference photo for free!

To receive your reference photo and your FREE 36 page “Introduction to Acrylic Painting” ebook:

If you’d like to learn to paint with me in a longer and more structured format, my full course, “Painting Flowers in Acrylic,” is NOW AVAILABLE!!! – *Use code YOUTUBE25 to take $25 off!*

I absolutely adore keeping sketchbooks, as they allow me the freedom to experiment while keeping a visual diary of my life. My acrylic painting sketchbook features landscapes and wildlife of my home in Northern Ontario, and I maintain this in addition to my gouache sketchbook dedicated to birds and my new oil sketchbook devoted to botanical studies. There’s nothing more magical than flipping through books like these; they are like windows into your soul.

I am beyond grateful for your support of my teaching, and if there’s anything you’d like to see in a future video, please don’t hesitate to write me a comment!

✨Connect with me✨
Facebook Art Support Group:
My website:

My Amazon storefront for preferred supplies:

Note: as an Amazon affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases. However, I use and authentically enjoy all of the recommended products below.

Favourite sketchbooks: Stillman & Birn Zeta Series
Gesso: Liquitex Professionals Gesso
Paint: Liquitex Professionals acrylic paint in titanium white, burnt umber, ultramarine blue, phthalo blue (red shade), cadmium red medium, cadmium yellow medium, quinacridone magenta
Tape: Scotch 3M delicate painter’s tape

*Special thanks to Sohail Rouhani for granting me permission to film and photograph the Nipissing Sunset from his beautiful property at Lakepoint Cottages in Callander ON*


Peach sky colour: begin with titanium white, then add a bit of cadmium yellow and red to warm it to a peachy orange. If it’s too saturated, add a hint of burnt umber, and ultramarine blue if it’s still too vibrant. This will cool it down.

Magenta section: using the peach as a base, add a bit of quinacridone magenta, some burnt umber and ultramarine blue to darken it

Major sky sections: Use titanium white, burnt umber, and ultramarine blue to mix a blueish grey. Add some phthalo to saturate the colour. This is complementary to the peach colour, so to blend between it and the peach, mix them on the palette first before mixing them on the paper.

For the water: use a grey base of titanium white, burnt umber, and ultramarine blue. Use the same base for both the purplish and the orangey colours. For the purple, add a bit more ultramarine blue and quinacridone magenta. For the orange, add a bit of cadmium yellow and cadmium red. Add the colours slowly, as it’s much easier to slowly introduce colour than it is to try and undo too much pigment added.

Keep making your life beautiful, friends, and happy painting!

00:00 Introduction
00:27 Collecting a Reference Photo
01:24 What Kind of Sketchbook Should You Use?
02:02 How to Prepare your Pages with Gesso and Tape
03:34 Creating a Wet Palette
03:56 Colors Used
05:00 Painting the Sky
06:56 Painting the Waves
13:21 Conclusion

Read More Read Less

Hi! I’m Marianne, I’m an artist and trained teacher (BEd, MEd, OCT). I create painting tutorials in acrylic, oil, and gouache/acrylic ink for both canvases and sketchbooks. I love teaching and supporting emerging artists, and sharing tips and strategies for creating success in your artistic practice. Mistakes and failures are part of the process, and […]

Rate this Episode:

Other Episodes

Load More

Podcasts You Might Enjoy…

By Jeff Wahl

Art People Podcast - Creative People Worth Listening To - A Podcast Interview Series with Joe Drinkwalter in North Bay Ontario

By Joe Drinkwalter

Richard Fortin Presents - RFPMEDIA - North Bay Echo - Community Podcast Network

By Richard Fortin

We would love to hear from you!

Please record your message.

Record, Listen, Send

Allow access to your microphone

Click "Allow" in the permission dialog. It usually appears under the address bar in the upper left side of the window. We respect your privacy.

Microphone access error

It seems your microphone is disabled in the browser settings. Please go to your browser settings and enable access to your microphone.

Speak now


Canvas not available.

Reset recording?

Are you sure you want to start a new recording? Your current recording will be deleted.

Oops, something went wrong

Error occurred during uploading your audio. Please click the Retry button to try again.

Thank you

Send your recording