Simply... master stone painting!

Step 1

Wash and dry your stones

The stones need to be washed. When completely dried, apply a layer of Gesso on the full surface of the stone. 2 layers are necessary to properly mask the roughness of the stone.

Step 2

Prime the stones

Apply Gesso as a primer on the stones once or twice depending on the stone's surface and let dry. The application of Gesso allows better adhesion of the paint to the stone and avoids any cracking and flaking to appear with time.

Step 3

Start painting the stone

Once the layers of Gesso are completely dried, mix blue and white to obtain a sky-blue shade which is applied to the surface of the stone. This background will be for the water.  

Step 4

Create a fish shape

Outline the shape of the fish using a thin hint brush and white paint to create the shape of the fish. Images of koi fish can easily be found online; in case you want to use a model.

Step 5

Add more colour

Add colourful stains with red paint all over the body of the fish using a fine brush for details. Then go for yellow and add stains of a different colour. Koi fishes are most of the time colourful.  At last, position the eyes with the black paint.

Step 6

Create shadows

To create the shadows and give volume to the fish, mix the colour blue with a bit of black. Apply the new colour to the contours of the fish to give relief to the animal. Feel free to add some bubbles to the blue background in order to make the picture livelier.

Step 7

Add dots for scales

Small little dots can also be added to the back of the fish to give the illusion of small scales shining in the sunlight. Here we go, your Koi Fish is now finished! It gives the impression the fish is floating on the stone. This effect is even more emphasised when watched from far.

Step 8

Apply varnish

Once done with your creation, apply 2 layers of acrylic varnish to protect your stone and make it last.

System3 Acrylic Paint

Daler-Rowney System3 Acrylics are versatile water-based colours made from high quality pigments. System3 Acrylic colours are lightfast, permanent, opaque, flexible and quick drying, making them suitable for applications on multiple surfaces both indoor and outdoor.


System3 Acrylic Brushes

Daler-Rowney System3 Acrylic Brushes are resilient and durable, perfect for painting with acrylics. The dark-tipped synthetic filaments and black shadow aluminium ferrule combined with an ergonomic black handle gives this brush style, affordability, flexibility and comfort.


Simply Mediums

Daler-Rowney Simply Mediums are the perfect complement of the Simply range of acrylic, oil and watercolour colours. The range is designed to answer all your needs, in the simpliest way!


The article was written by the artist Amylee