I am an Illustrator: Apples

Today we are going to do something fun! We are going to paint a green apple like the one in the painting “Son of Man”.


We’re not just going to paint it green though; we’re going to use different values (shades) of green to make it look like the apple is real and shiny.  After you create your masterpiece, be sure to hold on to it for an upcoming “I am an Author” activity.

  1. Draw a very basic apple shape. Think of a mix between a circle and a heart. It doesn’t have to be fancy at all.
  2. If you want to add a stem and a leaf or two you should absolutely follow your heart.IMG_8892 (2)3. Very lightly draw a couple small circles on the top part of the apple shape. (This is where the white paint is going to go.)IMG_8893 (2)4. Add another lightly drawn circular (almost like a crescent moon) shape following the outline of one side of the apple. (This is where the dark green paint goes. If you don’t have dark green you can use a little black to mix with your green.)

IMG_8894 (2)5. Once you’ve drawn your apple and the light circular shapes, carefully put a smudge of white paint in each of the circles on top and the dark green in the bigger shape on the bottom side of the apple.

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6. The next step is a little tricky. Carefully start to fill in the apple by spreading the dark paint towards the other parts of the apple. What makes this tricky is you want to try to follow the outline round shape of the apple.

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7. When you get close to the white paint, reverse the process. Start spreading the white paint around until it meets with the green. Now comes the fun.

8. Carefully blend the two paints together leaving the circled areas close to their original colors. This should leave light almost white spots on the top of the apple and a dark shadowy part around the bottom.

For extra fun I mixed a little bit of yellow paint with my green to make a slightly yellowish green color that I used to add highlights around the edges and lighter areas of my apple.

9. The last step it to paint the stem and leaf/s. I chose to use my yellow/green color so that the leaf would not look exactly like the rest of my apple.

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Notice that I didn’t worry too much about staying in the lines. This was more of a fun exercise, a way to learn about shading and have fun trying to make my apple look as real as possible. I encourage to have fun with this project. Play around with different ways to blend the paints and see which ones work better than others. Once you have a fantastic green apple, maybe try to paint a red one or even switch fruits; I hear oranges are a lot of fun to paint!

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Have fun!


Kevin Bartle

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