Wreath with Lemons Paint Tutorial

Paint a wreath with lemons in acrylics. This lemon wreath design is bright, cheerful and easy to make. Create a beautiful hand painted lemon wreath one easy stroke at a time.

Paint a wreath with lemons on a pallet board, wood circle, or a stretched canvas, the choice is yours. This beginner-friendly lemon painting lesson is easy to follow, with helpful hints along the way and a link to a full-length video and workbook.

Do you know anyone that likes to decorate with lemons? Paint this design as a gift and make them a Lemon Wreath door hanger or a hand-painted sign.

Note: Some of the painting tutorials I do for you need much more time and space so I make them available in the shop for you to download, print, and view the videos in real-time.

The photos and video are of the version I painted on a pallet board I built. I have instructions located here if you wish to build your own pallet board.

1 x 4 lumber cut to 18 inches and lined up
Pallet Board to Paint

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Alternately, you can paint this on a 14″ x 14″ stretched canvas or a wood circle (I found some at Hobby Lobby).

Supply list to Paint a Wreath with Lemons

Plaid FolkArt Multi-Surface Paints
Yellow Ocher
Daffodil Yellow
Moon Yellow
Sap Green or Thicket
Citrus Green
Wicker White
Burnt Umber
Coffee Latte
Azure Blue
Coffee Latte

Donna Dewberry Brush Set
#12 flat,
#10 flat
¾ inch flat
Liner brush
Surface: One of the below choices
wrapped canvas 14″ x 14″
wood palette board
wood circle

You are welcome to use colors you currently have.

Wreath of Lemons painted on a pallet board, with a beautiful blue background

Paint the background color in Azure Blue with Wicker White. If you are painting on wood I would suggest sealing after you have painted the background so that painting the design will be smoother to do. Bare wood, even with a painted background, will swiftly soak up the paint making for a bit of a challenge getting smoother strokes.

Let background dry.

Draw the Lemons or Transfer Pattern

To make a circle I traced around a small trash container. You can use a plate or another round object. The circle will be your guideline. You can see the white line in the practice piece I painted on brown craft paper.

brown craft paper with lemons painted in a circle

Want an ad free video tutorial with workbook and pattern?

lemon wreath painting workbook pages splayed
Complete workbook with traceable pattern

Get the complete ad-free video painting tutorial with a printable workbook and pattern to trace. Photo step by step instructions you can easily follow along with. Print and keep. Introductory price just $20 (usually $37)
Want only the workbook? That is available at the end of this post.

Sketch or transfer the lemons onto your surface of choice. Some lemons are single, while some double and are overlapping each other. The very top lemon is facing towards you rather than a side view.

Related: How to Transfer Traceable Patterns

pallet board with blue background painted

Basepaint wreath with lemons

The background of this painting is the Azure Blue with White and it is rather dark. Yellows are typically transparent colors and need a bit of help when you are painting over a darker surface. Especially when you want the yellow colors to be nice and bright.

Using the 3/4″ flat brush and Wicker white with a touch of Yellow Ocher, paint in the lemon shapes. Don’t worry about perfection just get them covered with the lighter color. Paint some with more white and others with more yellow to add variation.

Paint Summer Lemon Wreath Leaves

Double load the #12 flat brush with Sap or Thicket and Citrus Green. (do you need help with how to double load? Then press here for a demo)

Using simple sliding strokes paint in the leaves. Make sure the darker green is on the outside of the first stroke then on the inside with the second stroke. The contrasting colors will create the leaf seam.

base paint lemons with white

Add branches to the wreath with lemons

Double load the #12 flat brush with Burnt Umber and Coffee Latte slide some chisel edge strokes lifting at the end to create the lemon branches.

Add just a few branches, you can add more later if you like but taking away is much harder.

paint leaves and twigs on lemon wreath

Paint the lemons

Double load the #12 flat brush with Moon Yellow and Daffodil Yellow. Stroke along the outside edge of the lemon shapes with the Moon Yellow.

Once you have stroked the two colors all the way around the lemon, the inside will still need filling in. Just use the corner of the brush with the Daffodil Yellow on it to fill in.

Go ahead and paint all the lemons in this way.

Stroke Moon Yellow and Daffodil yellow on lemons

Add highlights to the lemon wreath

Use the small scruffy brush that comes in the brush set and lightly load with Wicker White. Tap off excess, you don’t want a lot of paint in the brush. As an alternate, if you don’t have a scruffy then use the corner of the flat brush.

Pounce the Wicker White onto the lemons in small areas where the light may be hitting. Since the Daffodil Yellow may still be a bit wet the Wicker White should blend in more easily.

Start with a little and add more if needed. Be sure to blend from the inside of the white section outward into the yellow so it lightly fades into it.

add white highlights to lemons in wreath

Add shading to the lemons

Load a touch of Yellow Ocher in one corner of the #12 flat brush, blend it into the brush. Along some edges deepen the shadow to add dimension to the lemons.

Come under the small bumps on either end with some of the Yellow ocher, this makes the lemon look like it curves there.

Secondly, add shading with the Yellow Ocher where one lemon overlaps another.

Next, on the top lemon that is facing us shade around the bump to make it look like a circle, don’t make a complete circle, just indicate one with partial shading around it. Put a dot in the center for a dimple.

shade lemons with Yellow Ocher to give dimension

Shade the leaves

Mix a tiny touch of Burnt Umber with Sap Green (or Thicket) to make a Green Umber. Sideload the clean #12 flat brush with the Green Umber, shade the leaves where they come from under the lemons, or overlap each other.

Paint in Shadows around the Lemon Wreath

Using the Green Umber and keeping it transparent by adding water or Floating Medium, add shadows around the outside of the lemons and the leaves where you feel it would cast shadows.

add shadowing around leaves and lemons

Timelapse video

To grab a printable PDF workbook of this Lemon Wreath DIY lesson along with a traceable pattern press the button below.

This is the workbook and pattern only. Not the video workshop.

lemon wreath painting workbook pages splayed

Happy Lemon Painting!

Want more Lemon Wreath fun? Here is a great tutorial to make a paper lemon wreath over at Craftberry Bush or maybe you would like to paint Citrus slices over at Tracie’s Step by Step Painting site.

Please enjoy and share!

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