Quick Christmas Butterfly with Rudolph by Annabel Hoogeveen

Thinking of Christmas, the first thing that pops into my mind is Rudolph....and  snow. But for me, painting a very neat Rudolph is too time-consuming when on-the-job. So I thought of an easier way to paint Rudolph, using a split cake and some easy brush strokes. Combined with a blue background, a red nose and lips and some snow it makes a quick and colorful Rudolph butterfly mash up, perfect for this time of year.



PartyXplosion 'Pearl White'

Superstar/FAB 'Baby Blue'

Mehron/Paradise 'Lagoon Blue'

Arty Brush Cake 'Teddy Bear'

Mehron/Paradise 'Beach Berry Red'

PartyXplosion 'White'

PartyXplosion 'Black'

Polyester Glitter 'Red'

BAM stencil H03

Ultimate Graffity Stencil Set Léa Selley

BAM stencil H10

American Painter Angle Brush 5/8"

Loew-Cornell Round Brush #4

Loew-Cornell Round Brush #2

Sponge Dauber



Step 1: Background color

Load a sponge with metallic white on one side and shimmer light blue on the other side and sponge a soft base on the entire forehead, the eyelids and on the cheeks. Keep the metallic white on the inside and the blue more on the outside. (I added a little bit too much blue directly under the eyes. A bit more metallic white would have been nicer there 😉). 

Apply the base on the cheeks in the shape of a butterfly bottom wing.

Add some texture with a stencil (BAM H03) and some darker blue, mixed with the baby blue that was already on my sponge. 


Step 2: Butterfly outline and Rudolph

Use an angle brush and a brown split cake to paint a butterfly outline. (If you think the inner contour line is a bit too harsh, then blend the inner contour with your finger or with a dry chisel or blending brush into the background.) Because I wanted this to be a quick design, I made sure there was enough of the darkest color of my split cake on my brush. In that way outlining wasn't necessary.

Next, paint Rudolph's head with a simple upside down U-stroke and add two ears.  


Step 3: Adding Santa and some red

Using a stencil add Santa and Rudolph's friends on the forehead with a finger dauber loaded with the darkest colors in the split cake (a mixture of brown and black). Try to follow the round edge of the blue background.

With another stencil and red add some accents between the top and bottom wing, next to the outer corners of the eyes.

Paint Rudolph's nose with the same red and a round brush #4 and add some red glitter on top.


Step 4: Rudolphs face and red glitter lips

Load a round brush #4 (or a small filbert brush) with the light and dark brown from the split cake and paint the two antlers (consisting of one big and two small teardrops), almost parallel to the top butterfly contour line.

Load a round brush #2 with regular black and outline the face, ears and nose and draw the eyes. Outline the antlers only on the shadow side.

Paint the lips with red, using a round brush #4 or a lipgloss applicator and add lots of red glitter. 


Step 5: Adding some snow and little stars

The final step is adding some snow on the butterfly outline and Rudolphs head, ears and antlers with regular white and a round brush #4. And a little highlight on the nose and eyes.

A few dots and stars and your Rudolph butterfly mash up is finished!


Additional info:

For this design I made Rudulph's nose my central focal point. You see that all the lines from the butterfly and Rudolph (ears and antlers) are directed towards this focal point. This will make my design more balanced. I also chose to give the antlers the same directions as the top butterfly outline, almost parallel, for that same reason.

The snow and dots on the bottom wings are directed towards the chin focal point, another key focal point when face painting. 

And to keep a fresh and open look (and not get 'saggy' eyes) I followed the nostril-outer eye corner line with the outer contour of my top wing.


You can use this method for a variety of 'butterflies'. Change the colors, add some extra brush strokes or a stencil in the butterfly. And if you have questions about this design, please don't hesitate to contact me on facebook or instagram!

I'd love to see your versions 😃!


Annabel Hoogeveen is the owner and founder of 'Blije-Snoetjes Kinderschmink', a Facepainting company and school in the Netherlands. She is painting for about 10 years and is passionate about teaching others how to facepaint, 'because the more face painters there are, the more kids we can make happy'.

Annabel likes colorful and easy 'on-the-job' designs. But, as a former vet, she also has a passion for painting realistic 3D animals.

She is an instructor at Olga Murasev's International Face Painting School (, has written several Facepainting blogs and recently won the 'Black Panther' competition here at

You can see more of her work on her Instagram and Facebook pages.