How To Make Black Paint At Home From Scratch!

Our content may have affiliate links that can result in commissions for qualifying purchases, full details in our privacy policy.

Darker colors, shades, and hues are becoming increasingly popular for both general arts and crafts as well as home decor with the trend looking to continiue to become more and more popular as time goes on. Due to this, we have noticed an increasing number of people reaching out to ask questions based around how to make black paint at home so we have decided to publish our own ultimate guide on the topic.

Unlike the other popular colors for arts and crafts or home decor, the usage of black or white paint does not necisarily conform to color wheel science and tends to fit well in a number of different color palettes. This is why black paint is becoming such a popular option and making your own black paint that allows you to add a number of custom tweaks to the specific color of the paint has taken off in recent years.

In this article, we are going to be going over a number of different ways that you are able to make your own black paint at home. We will be covering a number of three color recipies that tend to offer the best performance when making your own black paint, then some two color recipies that can offer some solid performance with less ingredients being required helping to keep your costs down and then a primary color recipie as the vast majority of our readers from the arts and crafts space should have access to the primary colors.

How To Make Homemade Black Paint From Scratch!

Although you will require a black pigment to make your own black paint at home from scratch, there are much easier methods that you are able to use if you already have a red, blue, and yellow in your paint collection. Some combinations of the various reds, blues, and yellows work considerably better than others when it comes to making black paint though.

Due to the methods of mixing existing paints in your collection being much more beginner friendly then starting from scratch with a black pigment and raw reagents, we will be starting with those methods. Later in the article, we will be going over how you are able to get similar results by using black pigments to make a number of different paints though.

When looking at how to make black paint at home, you tend to have a much easier job than when making some of the unique colors though. This is due to black technically being a shade rather than a specific color and there being a number of different ways that you are able to make it with variants of the three primary colors.

What Colors Make Black?

The three colors that make black are red, blue, and yellow and there are a huge number of ways that you are able to use hues and shades of these colors for different types of black paint. A nice chromatic black is surprisingly easy to make at home for most people due to already having the required colors in their collection.

If you are a beginner painter then the standard red, blue, and yellows are enough for most people to make a nice black paint color that will easily meet your needs. As your experience and skills develop and you add more exotic reds, blues, and yellows to your collection, you end up having more colors to make black variants that catch the light in different ways.

Depending on exactly what you actually want from your own custom black color, you can add the red, blue or yellow paints together in slightly different ratios to each other. This can tweak how the black will look and can help to improve its performance in different pieces of artwork to help bring the piece together.

The Core Three Colors To Make Black Paint!

Alizarin Crimson And Ultramarine Blue And Yellow Ochre Make Black

Most people agree that the core three colors to make black paint at home are alizarin crimson, ultramarine blue, and yellow ochre. They tend to offer an excellent chromatic black when used in a ratio of one third of each color before being mixed thoroughly as well as easily allowing you to make variants of black by adjusting the base ratio.

Although you are able to purchase a high quality alizarin crimson paint for cheap, we also have an article going over how to make alizarin crimson that may be worth reading too if you don’t already have it in your collection. You can also get yourself an excellent ultramarine blue paint for cheap too or follow our article on how to make ultramarine blue at home if you don’t already have it.

Although yellow ochre is a very popular color, it is probably the most expensive color for this specific method of making your own black paint but you can make your own yellow ochre too if you don’t already have it. That said though, due to the versatility of yellow ochre, adding a tube of it to your paint collection is usually well worth it as you will be using the color for more than just making your own black paint.

An Alternative Option To Make Black Paint!

Quinacridone Magenta And Pthalo Blue And Hansa Yellow Make Black

A very popular option for making your own black paint is to mix quinacridone magenta, pthalo blue, and hansa yellow together in equal parts of one third and them mix all three colors together thoroughly. This tends to produce a nice dark black paint that will work well in most situations and perform just as well as any store bought pre-made black paint.

This method of making your own black paint at home is less popular than the one covered above due to some of the colors being less popular. That said though, you are able to purchase a high quality quinacridone magenta paint, pthalo blue paint, and Liquitex Professional Heavy Body Acrylic Paint, 2-oz (59ml) Tube, Yellow Light Hansa for cheap due to all three colors being very budget friendly.

Phthalo blue is a very popular color that many of our readers will probably already carry in their paint collection anyway though. Hansa yellow offers a large amount of versatility outside of being used just to make black paint too so is more common than some of the other yellow colors. Although quinacridone magenta is probably the lease popular option in this recipe, it is a great color to have although it tends not to offer as much versatility as phthalo blue or hansa yellow in most cases.

What Two Colors Make Black?

There are a number of two color combinations that you are able to use to make your own black paint at home with the most popular one being to mix ultramarine blue and burnt umber together. You can use these two colors to create a number of different types of black paint but a ratio of one part ultramarine blue to two parts burnt umber tends to offer the best solid black.

The two color combinations for making your own shades of black tend to be more popular than the three color combinations for most beginners due to only requiring two tubes of paint. This helps to keep your budget as low as possible if you don’t currently carry the colors in your collection when compared to having to purchase three tubes of paint for the recipies covered above.

On the flip side of this though, the three color recipies offer more control and tend to produce a much better looking black paint than the two color recipies. The ratios ratios have to be perfect when only using two colors and the color can quickly change to a dark blue or dark orange rather than black if you accidentally add too much of one paint.

The Darkest Black Color!

ultramarine blue and burnt umber make black 2

Mixing ultramarine blue and burnt umber in a ratio of one part ultramarine blue and two parts burnt umber tends to offer you the darkest black color possible when mixing only two colors of paint. This is usually the most popular way for painters to make their own black at home due to both ultramarine blue and burnt umber being very popular colors.

You are able to purchase a cheap yet high quality ultramarine blue paint and Winsor & Newton Galeria Acrylic Color, 60ml (2-oz) Tube, Burnt Umber online with ease allowing you to quickly add them to your collection if you don’t already carry them. Depending on your skill level, you can also try to make a close variant of each color out of other paint colors that you have in your collection prior to using them to make black but this tends to deflate the two color purpose and make the process much harder.

Although you are only mixing two colors, the burnt umber serves as your yellow and red color in a single tube. This is why you usually need to use a ratio of one part ultramarine blue to two parts burnt umber when making black paint with this method. Depending on the specific hues of your ultramarine blue and burnt umber, you make have to tweak this slightly though.

A Quick Two Color Recipe For A Solid Black Color!

pthalo blue and cadmium orange make black

You are able to mix phthalo blue and cadmium orange in a ratio of one part phthalo blue and two parts cadmium orange to make your own light black hue that has a solid black color in most lights. This particular method tends to be one of the easiest due to being able to add more phthalo blue if the black is not dark enough or more cadmium orange if you need to lighten it too offering more control over the end result.

Due to phthalo blue being popular and used in a number of different painting styles, we would imagine many of our readers will already carry it in their collection of paints. If not, you are able to get pthalo blue paint online for cheap even when purchasing the color from the better, more reputable paint brands.

Cadmium orange is much less popular so many of our readers will either have to buy a tube of Winsor & Newton Galeria Acrylic Color, 200ml (6.75-oz) Tube, Cadmium Orange Hue or go over our list of cadmium orange substitutes to see if they are able to find something in their current paint collection that they are able to use. Keep in mind though, if you do use a camium orange substitute to make your black paint then you will have to adapt the ratios that you use it with your phthalo blue to compensate for the different in color to product a nice solid black paint.

A Good Two Color Black Paint Alternative!

pthalo blue and burnt siena make black

Although it is more of a very dark grey than an actual black, you can mix ultramarine blue and burnt siena to make a color that is very close to black. Depending on your needs and the colors that you already have available in your color palette, this may be the best route to take as the result is very close to a solid black.

If you don’t already have an ultramarine blue paint in your collection then they are cheap enough to pick up. Although burnt siena is an excellent color that offers a ton of versatility with plenty of use cases, it tends not to be as popular amongst beginner painters. Due to this, you may have to pick up a tube of Liquitex BASICS Acrylic Paint, 118ml (4-oz) Tube, Burnt Sienna to use this method of making black paint at home.

In addition to being able to use the colors for making black paint, you are also able to use the two in a number of different use cases to ensure that you get maximum value out of the paint colors. Both ultramarine blue and burnt siena are able to be used as stand alone colors as well as when mixed with a huge number of different colors to make unique colors or hues too.

How To Make Black Paint With Primary Colors!

Red And Blue And Yellow Primary Colors Make Black

To make black paint using only primary colors simply mix equal amounts of red, blue, and yellow paint together thoroughly to create your black paint. This is one of the quickest and easiest methods to make black paint as the vast majority of painters will have the primary colors in their paint collection.

Due to all paint sets including the primary colors, this is one of the best options to make your own black paint at home if you are a beginner as it is highly likely that you will already have the three colors that you need to make black. Add the red, blue, and yellow paint to a mixing container in equal parts and mix it all together for a few minutes until your black paint has formed.

One thing that many beginners tend to forget is that you have to mix all of the paint, not just the paint sitting at the top of your container. Although this is not really a problem for shallow containers, if you are using a tall container such as a water glass, many people only tend to mix the top of the paint. Be sure to push your mixing tool right to the bottom of the container to pull the paint at the bottom up to the top to mix it all together correctly.

How To Make Black Acrylic Paint!

Making your own homemade black acrylic paint is as easy as mixing a blue, red, and yellow acrylic paint in equal parts and then mixing them together. You are also able to make your black acrylic paint from scratch by adding a black pigment to a suitable acrylic medium such as gesso too.

You are able to easily source a high quality, cheap black pigment online these days and pretty much any clear gesso acrylic will do with some white gesso working well too. Just keep in mind that a white gesso will require more pigment to give it a niche solid black look prior to use. Depending on the amount of gesso you are using, you may have to use a large amount of black pigment too.

Just keep in mind that making your own black acrylic paint from scratch using the gesso method does have a number of potential problems accociated with it. Our article going over why your acrylic paint is watery as well as our article looking at why your acrylic paint is not drying should be enough to help the majority of people improve their homemade acrylic paint though.

How To Make Black Oil Paint!

Making your own black oil paint tends to be easier than most people think and you can often get a nice chromatic black by mixing a red, yellow, and blue oil paint in equal parts with each other. You can also add a suitable black pigment to an oil based medium to make your own black oil paint from scratch too but this does tend to be slightly harder than mixing pre-made colors.

There are a number of suitable black pigment options on the market these days that can work well with various oil paint mediums. If you are a beginner, we would highly recommend that you just stick to using linseed oil though and mix your black pigment into the linseed oil and then stir it thoroughly prior to use.

We have an ultimate guide to oil painting mediums online that goes into much more detail on the advantages and disadvantages of each of the suitable oil painting mediums though. We also have an article going over how you can make your oil paint look glossy as well as why your oil paint is not drying that should be able to help you with the two main problems that we see time and time again with people making their own oil paints.

How To Make Black Watercolor Paint!

The easiest way to make your own black water color paint is to mix a red, blue, and yellow water color paint in equal parts to make black. You are able to make your own water color paint from scratch using a black pigment and a suitable medium such as gum Arabic but this does tend to be harder than making other types of paints and we usually don’t recommend it for beginners.

If you do want to try making your own black water color paint from scratch then it can be a paint to find a suitable black pigment that is fine enough to work well for homemade water color paints. There are a large number of gum Arabic formulas with different thicknesses on the market though that you are able to use as your medium of choice.

For optimal results with any homemade black water color paint, try to use the paint as soon as possible after making it. The longer that you leave your homemade watercolor paint to sit the longer it has to develop issues and for its performance to decline. This is why we recommend that our readers simply go with a pre-made black watercolor paint or just take the route of mixing a red, blue, and yellow watercolor in equal parts.

How To Make Black Chalk Paint!

Making your own black chalk paint is not as easy as most people think and it is usually better to just purchase a pre-made black chalk paint. Even if you do add a black pigment to a white chalk paint, the texture and look of your paint will not look correct when compared to a pre-made black chalk paint option so we usually recommend against making your own.

You can try pretty much any black pigment that you can find as the results that you have will be similar no matter what option you take. If you are set on making your own homemade black chalk paint then just add the black pigment to some white chalk paint and mix the two together.

Due to chalk paint having a unique look and feel compared to other types of paint though, it tends not to do well when other types of pigment are added to it. This can make your chalk paint even weaker than it would be normally and potentially cause it to flake off with ease or have issues with color retention so it is usually best to just go with a store bought alternative.


That brings our article going over how to make the color black with paint to an end. We have covered a number of different methods that you are able to use to make your own black paint using different colors as well as different paint types. The methods that we have covered above should easily be able to help you make your own homemade black paint from scratch without issue and ensure that your paint will last you for as long as possible without issues with flaking, peeling or color fade.