Rock Painting

In this rock painting tutorial I’ll guide you through my super-easy techniques for painting mandalas on rocks using paint markers and 3D paints!

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced artist, you’ll learn some fun rock painting ideas that will help you unleash your creativity. Check out my step-by-step video tutorial below!

Painting on rocks is a fun and relaxing activity for all ages. With my easy rock painting techniques, you basically just take your paint markers and doodle your designs onto rocks! No pre-planning required! Instead, you can just get in the flow and play with colors, shapes and patterns.

While you can use acrylic paints to create your rock paintings, I’ve found that it’s much easier (and more convenient) to use paint markers and 3D paints, so those are the materials I demonstrate in this video.

Here are some examples of rocks that I’ve created using the methods explained above:

Rock Painting Supplies

In my rock painting video tutorial, I explain the art supplies you’ll need to create rock art, and then show you how to use them. Here’s a quick summary.


First you’ll need some rocks! I found affordable bags at my local Lowe’s (a home improvement store), but you can also buy smooth rocks for painting online (affiliate link) or even forage for them in nature.

Paint markers

I love to use Posca Paint Markers (affiliate link) because they are relatively affordable and come in a wide range of vibrant colors. But you can use any brand that you want!

3D Paint

3D paints like Ranger Stickles or Nuvo Crystal Drops (affiliate links) are a fun and easy wasy to add pops of color, dimension, and glitter to your painted rocks. You can find cheaper 3D paint in the crafts section at stores like Target or Walmart.

Gesso and brush

Before painting on your rock, it’s a good idea to apply a few coats of gesso to create a more welcoming surface for paint. I demonstrate how to do this in my video and explain why it’s recommended. (Basically, it helps the paint stick to the rock better, and makes the paint colors appear more vibrant.) While you certainly can paint on rocks without gesso, you’ll end up using more paint in order to achieve opaque coverage.

The Rock Painting Process

The rest of the video takes you through my entire process for creating detailed mandala designs on rocks!

We start out nice and easy with simple circular designs of bold color that will be our base layers, like you see below. I drew my circles freehand, but you could use a compass if you wanted.

Next we start layering on designs, gradually building up the complexity with shapes and contrasting colors.

This is all done freehand, with no pre-planning. However, if you prefer, you can sketch your designs onto your rock with a pencil, and then paint it in.

As you’ll see in the video demo, we continue adding more and more shapes and patterns. By the time we’re done, the rock painting looks like this!

Of course, you don't have to make your rock mandalas as detailed as mine! 😁 I'm just totally addicted to detail, so I keep adding more and more, but you can declare your own rock to be finished at any step of the way. 😊

To see every step of my process, check out the full video on YouTube: How to Paint Rocks: Easy Rock Painting for Beginners with Paint Markers!

If you’re interested in more art tutorials like this, check out my YouTube Channel!

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