Search
Close this search box.

Trompe L’oeil Medallion – A How To

Trompe l’oeil is a painting technique that creates the illusion of three-dimensional objects or scenes on a two-dimensional surface. This is often used to create the impression of real objects or architecture. Pierre Finkelstein of Pierre Finkelstein Institute of Decorative Painting shows you how he created this finish. 

Additional information can be found in Pierre’s book, The Art of Faux as well as additional blog posts on Trompe L’oeil and Elements of Light and Shadow.

HOW TO CREATE THIS FINISH

Use our step-by-step instruction below

MATERIALS NEEDED:

Here is a list of the tools & supplies you will need to achieve this technique.  Supplies available at fauxbrushes.com are linked below and listed at the bottom of the page.

1

TRANSFER THE DESIGN

STEP 1 – TRANSFER THE DESIGN: Create a stencil or use the premade Medallion Stencil. In this case, a classic 7-inch medallion was sketched. This stencil will not be painted, instead, a pencil will be used to transfer the design onto the canvas.

2

APPLY THE HALFTONE

STEP 2 – APPLY THE HALFTONE: This is the most important step in creating a tromp l’oeil medallion.  It is important to take care to know where your light source is coming from and the 3-D profile you are trying to achieve.

Using Acrylic Colors and a filbert Trompe l’oeil Brush or a Lettering Brush, apply the halftone in layers.  Make 2 to 3 swipes of the halftone while decreasing the space that you paint. Use a sable hair Detailing Brush to make fine outlines.

3

APPLY ACCENT COLOR

STEP 3 – APPLY ACCENT COLOR: Using a stronger tone of Acrylic Colors, apply the accent color. Use this tone for drop shadows and accentuated outlining.  Always paint the accent color within the halfone but always leave some halftone exposed.

4

ADD HIGHLIGHTS

STEP 4 – ADD HIGHLIGHTS: Add the highlight colors in a shade brighter than the halftone. When you start the highlight, congrats, you’re way more than halfway finished.

5

APPLY SUPER ACCENT

STEP 5 – APPLY SUPER ACCENT: Finally, add the super accent to the darkest areas of the medallion.

6

APPLY SUPER HIGHLIGHTS

STEP 6 – APPLY SUPER HIGHLIGHTS: Also mix a super highlight color for a pop of light on the brightest spots.

COMPLETED FINISH

FEATURED

PRODUCTS

RELATED POSTS