Creating Snowflakes in Corel Painter 12

Creating Snowflakes in Corel® Painter™ 12  

Welcome to this tutorial on how to use the Kaleidoscope tool in Corel Painter!   New to Painter 12, the Kaleidoscope tool is a fantastic way to create a stunning work of art in only a few minutes.


A video version of this tutorial can be found in the Discovery Center.


What you will Learn: 

  • How to create a new image and select a canvas size
  • How to use the Kaleidoscope tool
  • How to select a Brush from the Brush Library and adjust the size
  • How to save an image as a Riff and export as a Jpeg

In this example we will be creating an image that absolutely must be symmetrical, and that is a snowflake.

Go to File > New and create a new image.  Select a canvas size of 900 by 900 and a resolution of 150 dpi.

In this example, the background color has also been set to a dark indigo which will contrast well with the white ice crystals.

Next, click on the Mirror Painting tool in the standard toolbar.

If you have used the Kaleidoscope tool before it may already show that icon,

otherwise, you will need to click on it in the interactive properties bar at the top of the screen.  (circles appear on overlay track)

When you're painting a snowflake it's important to remember that although each snow crystal is completely unique, like a fingerprint, they generally share the characteristic of a six-fold symmetry. To prepare for this, make sure that the number of intersecting lines in your Kaleidoscope has been set to 3.

For a nice thick, white that resembles snow, select the  Thick Acrylic Flat Brush from the Acrylics brush library.

Make sure that the color is set to white.

The brush size can be very different depending on the style of snowflake you’re creating.

Start by tracing a line of paint up each of the guidelines and end the line in a point. If you have a drawing tablet you will notice the pen tip change as you move your hand on a different angle.

As you can see, each stroke is mirrored on either side of the line and is also repeated at two other points on the opposite intersection lines.

To add finer detail, reduce the size of the brush and continue the pattern until you're satisfied with the result.

Remember, there are infinite possibilities when it comes to creating snowflakes and there is very little potential for error.

When the image is complete, go to File > Save As and select RIFF.  This way if you wish to continue to work on the project  at a later time, the Kaleidoscope lines will remain in-tact.   To save a version that can be uploaded to Facebook, printed or sent via e-mail, go back to File > Save as and select Jpeg.

Thank you for reading this tutorial on the Kaleidoscope tool in Corel Painter 12  and have a safe and Happy Holiday Season!


If you have enjoyed this tutorial, be sure to check out the other tutorials that are available in the Discovery Center. If you have any ideas for tutorials or projects that you would like to see in the future, e-mail

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