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Large Lemon & Eucalyptus Canvas

By: Jennifer Rizzo
February 19, 2018

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Large Lemon   Eucalyptus Canvas
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I recently had a day to play around with some paint at home, so I pulled out my DecoArt Americana Premium Acrylics and a large canvas. I really love painting nature and was inspired to paint a Lemon and Eucalyptus canvas. 

Items needed:

  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Burnt Umber
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Carbon Black
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Raw Sienna
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Diarylide Yellow
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Yellow Green Light
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Titanium White
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Phthalo Green-Yellow
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Sap Green
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Viridian Green Hue
  • Americana Premium Acrylics - Cobalt Turquoise Hue
  • Large canvas
  • Paintbrushes


One technique I really love to do, after I sketch out my idea lightly in pencil, is to underpaint my images in either brown or black paint. Underpainting is an art technique I discovered a few years ago. It involves laying down a base color before painting. Many of the Old Masters, such as Vermeer, used this technique as their base. I fell like laying down a pre-layer of paint really gives depth and motion to the colors on top, since they peek through a little bit in the end. Some people like to underpaint with wild colors or pastel. I am pretty boring and depends on what my top colors are going to be, but I usually use a dark brown such as Raw or Burnt Umber, or a black such as DecoArt Americana Premium Acrylic in Carbon Black. I will occasionally use Prussian Blue or Payne’s Gray as well.

Instruction #1 - underpainting technique for lemons
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In this case, I used DecoArt Americana Burnt Umber for under my lemons, and Carbon Black for under my Eucalyptus.

For my lemons, I layered Raw Sienna first, then I mixed it down with a little Diarylide Yellow. Then, I layered with the yellow and highlighted with Titanium White, adding an occasional slight green accent of Yellow Light Green. 

Instruction #3 - Painting over underpaint
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Instruction #4 - painting a lemon in acrylic
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The lemon leaves were painted Phthalo Green-Yellow and Sap Green (one of my favorite colors!), with a little yellow and white accents on top.

I wanted to go slightly cooler with my Eucalyptus leaves, so over the Carbon Black, I used Viridian Green Hue and Cobalt Turquoise Hue and mixed with Titanium White to create various shades.

Instruction #5 - painting eucalyptus lower
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Instruction #6 - Highlighting eucalyptus
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I also used the underpainting with the leaves not only as a color-base, but to represent shadows as leaves in the background. It’s nice that it can be used both ways.

I love how much color the painting adds to my dining area. It brings in such a touch of spring! Is underpainting something you do with your art, or is it a new technique you want to try?

Instruction #8 - Dining area lemon picture
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Instruction #9 - lemoneucalyptus painting in dining room
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Find more creative inspiration on my blog (linked below) or visit my retail store and Makery in Lisle, Illinois.

Be sure to visit Jennifer Rizzo  for more projects and to learn more about Jennifer.


UNIQUE and BEAUTIFUL Jennifer. It sets off your room just perfectly. Love how great the DecoArt Premium paints give it such great depth and vividness. Xj.


February 20, 2018

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