May 25, 2016

How to Paint Like Catherine Klein Rose ~ Study ~

Spring is the perfect time to paint roses. And the best teacher is mother nature.  An artists' own views and convictions are a must in painting in order to capture what the artist is feeling.

 If you have never painted roses before they may seem a little difficult. A good way to start is by first studying designs from other  rose painters, such as the beloved china artist Catherine Klein, who is well-known for her rose paintings. Catherine Klein, born in Germany in 1861, attended art school in Berlin and aside from painting floral's she painted birds and fruit. Her worked appeared in print during her time, and today it is reproduced everywhere from paintings, miniatures, fabric, greeting cards, pillows, furniture, prints, and much more. Not much is known about her personal life, however. But we know she adored nature!

While Catherine painted in oil or watercolors,  I will attempt to show you how to paint  my version of a Catherine Klein rose in acrylics. That said, I am a work in progress. I look forward to painting my own version of roses from what I see in my beautiful rose garden. 

Catherine Klein Rose

Begin by drawing shadows and darker tones. If you aren't good at drawing, trace the rose below and practice shading in areas as seen in photo.  

Follow the steps below for the next part. I tried to take photos of my steps but the images didn't come out the clearest. Nonetheless, the photos give you the basic idea of placement of values. For practice, I recommend canvas paper-which is what I used here.

(Above)Begin painting with crimson red paint mixed with titanium white paint to get to a starting value (I paint with 3 values). To the middle values, add a bit of cadmium yellow paint to warm up some of the middle values. The rose shadows are the starting value red color mixed with a little green(from which  you will make by blending phthalo blue and crimson red). Paint the shadows. Take a muted green (a green toned down with red) and add white. Outline the rose. Add more white and blend it into the rose and into the shadow areas.

Paint the rest with the light muted green then add white to lighten it more, then fade the rose with it very little by brushing it on just to soften the rose. 

Before I proceed to complete the painting I add warmer muted greens to the leaves and lighten them with white. I made a muted blue to add in areas and finished by swirling a light green in areas.

I took once last look at my painting to find where I needed to darken or lighten or warm more of my highlights. For highlights I used the lightest green mix, almost white, that I used for swirling earlier.

Now that's beautiful living! Happy painting! 


~ All photos, text, art in this post is copyrighted.~


  1. Hi Lisa...l had never heard of Catherine Klein before, and such a talent should not go unnoticed so thanks for sharing. Your rose is equally as beautiful as hers, and fantastic instructions on how to paint one...l have painted a few roses over the years and almost always find them difficult so l've read your words with care and interest...l especially love the colours you've used.

    1. Thank you. It's a learning process for anyone. Even master painters had to start somewhere. Thanks for visiting.


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