Nostalgic Winter Painting


Inspired by the nostalgia of the traditional winter scenes by Currier and Ives, this painting was completed in one afternoon by mixing only a few paint colors. A wood plaque can be primed with gesso, or a small canvas, or other surface can be used. While these instructions give specific color combinations, feel free to improvise your color mixing and create your own winter landscape. Enjoy!

The dark gray suggests a forest in the distance.

The dark gray suggests a forest in the distance.

You will need:

  • Acrylic or oil paints in white and primary colors; red, yellow and blue
  • 1 or 2 small brushes
  • painting surface (3 inch wood plaque is shown) 


  1. Plan out a simple composition which will include a red barn, a horizon line with suggested tree line in the distance, and a few larger trees in the foreground. Don't be too concerned about fine details.
  2. Working from light to dark, paint in all the white areas, including the snow-covered rooftop. Use small amounts of red, blue, and yellow to create gray, Use this gray to paint a series of vertical lines for the tree line in the distance.   Add white to create different shades of gray.
  3. Mix a purple using red and blue. Add white in desired amount to paint a lavender texture in the sky.
  4. Use a dark gray (mix more if needed) to paint a curved path. Show perspective by widening the path near the bottom of the composition. Blend in some gray to shadow the snow, adding small amounts of blue and lavender for dimension.
  5. Paint the red barn, darkening the window, door and shadows with dark purple/blue.
  6. Using the tip of your brush, gently paint tall tree trunks in the foreground, adding branches with thin shorter lines.
  7. Finally, create a runny mixture of white paint to spatter on snowfall as a finishing touch, if you wish.

Post by: Nicoletta Siccone / ETSY Shop: ArtologieDesigns / Website:


Nicoletta is a lifelong artist and art educator, with an M.A. in Art Education and Administration. She travels the world seeking cultural inspiration for her art, and has worked in fibers, acrylics, oils, and sculpture. She currently teaches elementary art education, adult oil painting and sumi-eclasses in New Jersey.  She is also known for her unique jewelry, inspired by the reinvention of the mundane zipper, featured throughout the NY/NJ area as Artologie Zipper Jewelry.