Wednesday, August 19, 2020

ROCK PAINTING TUTORIAL #1 - "A Basket of Pansies"

A Basket of Pansies

Thank you for being here for this rock painting tutorial!

By using my methods, anyone can learn how to paint rocks and turn them into beautiful decorative pieces of art.  I sure hope you will give it a try!

In this tutorial, I will lay out for you step by step through outlines, video demonstrations and links to informative articles that will show how I took an image of a beautiful basket of pansies and transferred it onto a rock.

Later I painted over the transferred image to create a unique one of a kind rock painting like the one pictured here...

Also provided will be a list of supplies I used with links to where you can purchase them on line for your convenience.  However, you will also be able to purchase most of the supplies used in this project tutorial at your local craft store like Hobby Lobby or Michaels.

You will not need all of the supplies included, but I wanted to include links to additional products to give you a choice and to demonstrate the wide variety of products that can assist you in creating beautiful painted rocks.

Supplies for Transferring an Image for this Rock Painting Tutorial:
'A Basket of Pansies'

Before you transfer the pansy basket image, you will need to do a few things to prepare your rock for the transfer of the image…

1.  Find a rock you want to paint, wash and dry your rock.
2.  Paint the rock with at least two coats of white acrylic paint.
3.  Select a picture you would like on your rock and print it out onto freezer paper.

Read "Learn How to Find and Print Any Picture from Your Computer" linked below to learn more about where you can find prints for your rock.

Here is a picture of the Search Results from Google when I typed 'basket of pansies' into the search bar.  There are so many to pick from!... 

This is a screenshot of my 'basket of pansies' Google search

After you find a picture of a pansy basket on your computer, you will have to download it into a word processing document using a simple copy and paste method which you can learn about by clicking the links below this paragraph.

You may also want to watch the following videos before you get started…

How to Make Freezer Paper Sheets for your Inkjet Printer

Printing Commands Tutorial for Printing onto Freezer Paper
(also called: Little Boy in Bunny Costume Rock - PART 2 - "Printing Extra Flowers onto Freezer Paper")

Are you ready rock painters???  Let's get we go!


Read and follow the written directions in each STEP, and watch the videos linked in each STEP below for visual demonstrations.

Make sure to refer to the articles and videos linked above the DIRECTIONS BEFORE moving forward. 



Transfer the ink from your printed image (basket of pansies) to your rock.  After your image dries onto the surface of the rock, use a paint brush to wet the back of the paper.  When the image is still damp, and in other words, not soggy, begin to roll off the paper layer by layer until the ink is fully transferred to the rock and there is barely no paper left.

Pansy Basket Rock Painting Tutorial - PART 1 – “Transferring Freezer Paper Print to Rock Surface”

Rolling the Paper off of a Freezer Paper Transfer to Reveal the Ink on your Rock” 

This is a related video that I linked to demonstrate how to peel the paper off the image.  From the picture, you can see that it is not of the 'Basket of Pansies' rock, but that it is from another rock painting tutorial, 'Red Peony Roses'.



In order to make the rock look like a real basket of pansies, you might want to add more flowers to the outer edges.  For this I recommend using the main image but printing a smaller copy of the image as follows…

Go into your Word Processing document in which you have saved your main pansy basket image.

To make smaller pansy images from the same main image you will have to resize the original image.  Keep in mind that you don’t want them too small, but just want them to look a bit different from the flowers on the main image…

If you would like more information about this step, please watch a video about how to print extra flowers.  For your convenience I linked two videos directly below this paragraph where I demonstrate how to do this step on a different rock painting tutorial that I wrote...


“How to Print Extra Pansy Flowers” (from Little Boy in Bunny Costume Rock Painting Tutorial)

“Revealing Pansy Images” (from Little Boy in Bunny Costume Rock Painting Tutorial)

Remember, these videos are just examples for you to see the process. 


…Continuing on

Going back into the word processing document where you have your main image saved, 'right click' over the picture once again and select 'Save As' and save another picture of the main image so you can adjust the size of the image and make smaller pansies for the outer edges.

You may want to name it 'smaller pansy images' and save it to your desktop for easy access.  By using 'Save As' you are creating a new document and this way you are saving the main image unchanged from the first printing so that in case you had to print it out again for some reason it will be the same size. 

You should probably print two copies of the new smaller version of the main image (from the new document you have created.  By doing this you will have multiple pansies to choose from; it will depend on how many pansies you think you will need to fill in the empty spaces).

To resize the main image in the new document, simply hover over the image with your mouse and by ‘right clicking’ on it a black line will appear around the image.  Grab the corner with your mouse to move the outer line until you get it to be the right size to make smaller pansy transfers for the outer edges of your rock painting.  Just eyeball it as they say.

Rotate the image horizontally and vertically (using the WP ‘Format’ keys that should appear at the top of the screen when you 'right click' over the image) so that the flowers are not only smaller, but they will look different if they are reversed just to give it a more realistic look

Just play around with the image, flip it back and forth, turn it upside down to get different views because if you have different sizes of the pansies it will give the flowers a more natural look once the ink is transferred to the rock.  No two flowers are alike after all!

Here is a picture of what the top of your word processing screen should look like at the top after you hover over the image and click 'Format' if you have Windows...

Format Keys to Rotate the Image Horizontally and Vertically

Print the smaller versions of the pansy basket onto freezer paper.  Remember to load the back tray!  And don't forget to select 'Rear Tray' when you send the print command.

Pansy Basket Rock Painting Tutorial - PART 2 - "Adding Additional Flowers to the Outer Edges"


Let the images dry for about a half an hour so the ink doesn’t smudge.

Cut out the smaller pansies individually...

Arrange the pansies on your rock and once you are satisfied with the placement, coat the inked side of the pansies and with the Mod Podge in the same way you did with the main image by turning them upside down to dry onto the rock’s surface.

Now take your paint brush and coat the back of the pansies (that have been dried face down on the rock) with water to loosen the layers of paper one by one to reveal the ink that transferred into the paint.  Moisten the paper and let it dry over and over again until all the paper is mostly gone.

To reiterate, you may have to do this step of wetting the paper and allowing it to dry between five to ten times before the paper will start to roll off easily enough.

See also:

“Revealing Pansy Images” (from Little Boy in Bunny Costume Rock Painting Tutorial)



You will be using the tip of your index finger to go over the back of the images that have been dried onto the outer edges of the rock as follows...

As the paper starts to loosen up after re-wetting it (as outlined in STEP #2) numerous times, you will see little pills of the paper start to bead up and roll off just by going over it with your paint brush.

When you see this start to happen, the images are still too wet to roll the paper off.   If it’s too wet when you start to roll it off, then the ink might come off too and that’s what you don’t want to happen.

However, the paper rolling up into little balls from the water being applied is the sign that it’s almost time to reveal the ink that has transferred onto the rock’s surface.

Let the images dry one more time (AFTER you see the little balls of paper and) BEFORE you begin rolling it off with your fingertip.

Pansy Basket Rock Painting Tutorial - PART 3 - "Revealing the Pansy Images"



Now that the ink has dried onto your rock, it’s time for the really fun part, using your markers, paint pens, or acrylic paints to color it up and make it your own!

There are so many methods to adding the color to your rock, but for the purposes of this tutorial I will just explain what I did to color mine here.

Since I wanted to use the main image of my pansies as just a base image to color over with my paint pens, I went over the flowers with my Deco Art Opaque Paint Marker (broad line) and here is what it looked like after it dried…

Pansy Basket image covered with a white opaque paint marker

I love these paint pens and I use them all the time, just sayin’!  It’s like painting without the mess.  In addition they come in so many colors and sizes so you can not only color in large areas of your rock, you can write with them as well.

The paint from opaque paint pen markers comes out thick and it dries quickly, probably within 10 minutes.  After the paint dries, the image is so smooth and will absorb the colors of your permanent markers or Sharpies easily.  I also find that paint pens provide more control for defining lines than an ordinary paint brush.
All you have to do from here is color it in and outline it.  Have fun rock painters!  And remember to...

Be creative & be happy!


8.5 "x 11" Pre-Made Freezer Paper Sheets
Mod Podge Matte Gel Medium
Painting Flowers on Rocks
Mod Podge Matte Gel Medium
White acrylic paint
Reynolds Kitchen Freezer Paper
Inkjet Printer
Arteza Paint Pens
Sharpie Permanent Markers
Sharpie Ultra Fine Black Marker (for outlines)
Shuttle Art Markers
Peel and Stick Flower Stencil
Leaf and Ivy Stencil
Deco Art White Paint Pen
Paint Markers
Fine Point Paint Pens
Mod Podge Photo Transfer Medium
8.5 "x 11" Pre-Made Freezer Paper Sheets
Mod Podge Matte Gel Medium

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