How to Paint a Galaxy in Acrylics - Galaxy Paint Colors - Galaxy painting
How to Paint a Galaxy - Galaxy Painting by Cristina-vivi Iordache
Acrylics,  Paintings

How to Paint a Galaxy in Acrylics – Galaxy Paint Colors

How to Paint a Galaxy in Acrylics on Canvas

In October, this year, I decided to create a galaxy painting and make a series of “How to Paint a Galaxy” video series to document it. This galaxy artwork is the first painting I created after I made an important step in my life. I moved from my father’s house and now I live with my partner. I wanted to move from home for many years, already, and this year this thing finally happened.

The painting I decided to create is a symbol of freedom built in galaxy paint colors. It represents my spiritual journey into the vast space and the first step in reaching my goal. If I would describe in words my painting, although I don’t like to explain my artworks, this is how it would be:

My galaxy painting’s description

Cosmic birds - How to paint a galaxy in acrylics - galaxy painting - galaxy paint colors
Cosmic birds by Cristina Vivi Iordache – How to paint a galaxy in acrylics

A free flock of birds flying into the universe is the expression of my rebellion against society’s rules and limitations. My mind never fits into the world’s regulations. I used to suffer from this divergence, even felt bad for being so different from everyone else. The birds in my galaxy painting fly in the same direction with the galaxies and nebula. They let the universal spirit flow in them and guide them around the world. They have no legs because they are spiritual beings searching for the essence of the Universe. Hence, they don’t have a body that will get tired. This galaxy painting in acrylics is the feeling in my soul. A restless search of something beyond reality. 

“Cosmic birds – this painting is a manifestation of my feelings. It’s the flickering you feel in your chest when you decide you want to be free. When you decide to be free you don’t just become free. When you decide to be free you leave the person you used to be, behind. You unchain your soul and mind of society’s regulation, other people’s expectations, and your own preconceptions. You no longer fear other people’s judgmental thoughts and you just be your real self. That is the moment when you start walking the path, the path to you.”

Tools and materials:

  • acrylics paint from Maimeri
  • primed and stretched cotton canvas
  • regular pencil
  • various size brushes
  • music for your soul

How to paint a galaxy in acrylics – step by step

This is not my first attempt at using galaxy paint colors and create a galaxy painting. In the past, I painted a galaxy background for another piece of art. I named that painting “Butterflies and galaxies”  and that is when I worked with this technique.

Step 1 – drawing the birds and coloring the background

Begin with a quick sketch in pencil on the canvas with a pencil. This is just a guideline, so you don’t have to make it too detailed or visible. You start by drawing the birds on canvas. Their shapes can be the way you like.

After drawing the sketch use black acrylics paint for the background. Keep the birds’ shape untouched. For reference and example, see the following video I did. The speech is in Romanian, but I also added captions so check the option before watching the video.

Step 2 – stars and galaxy painting process

Star dust by Cristina Vivi Iordache - Galaxy paint colors
Star dust by Cristina Vivi Iordache

After coloring the background, the next step is to paint the galaxies. This is the step that will help you learn how to paint a galaxy in acrylics on canvas. I used various galaxy paint colors: primary bright yellow, magenta red, titanium white, bright green. This step is a little tricky because you won’t notice how good the galaxies look until you add the stars.

You can use normal brushes to add the galaxy paint colors or you can use soft sponges. I couldn’t find my sponge, but in the next video tutorial, I will definitely show you how I use a beauty blender :D.

Add more intense galaxy colors in the middle of each nebula cluster using the brush and fade it away with a sponge as you move away from the center. When you are satisfied with the way the galaxy looks, add the stars. Use diluted white paint and a fan brush or a normal brush and hit it gently with another brush to create tiny drops on the painting.

When creating the stars, add more drops in the middle of the galaxies and less in the black areas. You should use a reference photo of galaxies to observe the pattern. You will see that the stars conglomerate in the middle and this is giving the galaxy its shine.

In the next video of my series of how to paint a galaxy in acrylics on canvas, you can see how I used these techniques to create my galaxy painting:

Step 3 – how to paint flying birds in acrylics

The next and final step is painting the birds. There is no special technique that I’m using so it’s best if you paint them the way you love. I chose to paint the birds yellow, red and green. For each color, I also added some help-colors: purple, orange and blue. It’s important to color the shadows in any painting, not just this one, with a darker or cooler color. Try to never use black when painting the shadows of an object. Even if it’s very dark, try to mix blue and purple, or brown.

Finally, I added lots of details to create an artistic feathery effect. You can watch me going through these steps in the final tutorial video from my How to Paint a Galaxy series.

I hope you find my tips and bits of advice helpful and if you have questions you can leave me a message here or you can write me a comment on my Youtube channel. Also, if you enjoy seeing me painting, subscribe to my channel because you will find lots of painting and drawing videos.

Thank you for reading and have a great day.