20 Subject Ideas To Kickstart Your Next Painting

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The following is a list of ideas to help you think of a subject for your next painting. If you want access to painting classes and templates, come join us at the Artistry of Paint Parties membership!

Serene Landscape:

mirror lake reflecting wooden house in middle of lake overlooking mountain ranges
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Paint a peaceful scene of a meadow, mountains, or a calm lake to capture the beauty of nature.

Vibrant Floral Arrangement:

different fresh colorful flowers in bucket in water
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Create a colorful bouquet of flowers, focusing on different shapes, textures, and vibrant hues.

Majestic Wildlife:

portrait of lion
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Depict an animal, such as a lion, owl, or dolphin, in its natural habitat, capturing its grace and strength.

Abstract Expressionism:

abstract painting
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Let your imagination run wild and create an abstract artwork using bold brushstrokes, vibrant colors, and expressive lines.

Still Life:

three red apples on wooden surface
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Arrange a collection of everyday objects, like fruits, vases, or books, and capture their form, light, and shadow.


creative graffiti wall with portrait of frida kahlo
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Challenge yourself by painting a realistic or stylized portrait, capturing the unique features and emotions of the subject.


cityscape photography near water
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Paint a bustling city skyline or a charming street scene, capturing the architectural details and the energy of urban life.

Dreamy Seascape:

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Depict a tranquil beach, crashing waves, or a breathtaking sunset over the ocean, evoking a sense of serenity.

Impressionistic Gardens:

beautiful garden with blooming flowers
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Paint a lush garden scene with blooming flowers, foliage, and dappled sunlight, inspired by the Impressionist style.

Fantasy Realm:

alluring woman wearing white dress
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Let your imagination soar and create a painting featuring mythical creatures, enchanted landscapes, or magical elements.

Rustic Still Life:

retro cameras near knife and lens near film on desk
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Arrange rustic objects like old books, vintage crockery, or weathered tools, capturing the charm and nostalgia of the past.

Abstract Nature:

abstract painting of nature
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Use organic shapes, flowing lines, and earthy colors to create an abstract representation of nature’s beauty.

Architectural Marvels:

eiffel tower under blue sky
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Paint iconic buildings or landmarks that captivate you, showcasing their unique architecture and intricate details.

Whimsical Creatures:

boston terrier wearing unicorn pet costume
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Create a painting featuring fantastical creatures like unicorns, fairies, or dragons, allowing your imagination to roam freely.

Personal Reflection:

abendstimmung ball shaped clouds dawn
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Express your emotions and thoughts through an abstract or symbolic artwork that represents your personal journey.

Musical Inspiration:

women s black framed eyeglasses
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Paint a scene inspired by music, whether it’s the energy of a live performance or the emotions conveyed by a particular song.

Water Reflections:

symmetrical photography of clouds covered blue sky
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Capture the mesmerizing effect of water reflections, painting a serene lake, a flowing river, or a rainy day scene.

Nighttime Sky:

person standing under a rock formation on a starry night
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Depict a starry night sky, a celestial phenomenon like the Northern Lights, or a moonlit landscape, capturing the mystical ambiance.

Abstract Geometric:

abstract background of wall with geometric ornament
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Create a composition using geometric shapes, lines, and patterns, exploring the interplay between form and color.

Cultural Heritage:

woman in pink and white floraldress dancing on street
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Paint a scene or symbol representing your cultural heritage, celebrating the traditions and richness of your roots.

Remember, these painting subject ideas are just a starting point. Feel free to adapt and modify them according to your personal style, interests, and the story you want to convey through your art. Let your creativity guide you and explore the endless possibilities of the canvas!