Carl's Sims 3 Guide - Skills, Traits, Careers, Rewards, and Lifetime Wishes for Ambitions and World Adventures

The Sims 3 Skills
Advanced TechAlchemyAthleticBot MakingCharismaCollectingConsignment
Laser RhythmLogicMartial ArtsMixologyNectar MakingPaintingPhotography
RidingScienceScuba DivingSculptingSocial NetworkingStreet ArtWriting

The Sims 3 Painting Guide - Become a Master Painter/Artist

Painting a masterpiece in the Sims 3

This Sims 3 Guide was originally written for the PC and Mac versions of the game, but also will help owners of the console versions - PS3, Xbox 360 and Wii. Please remember some info or numbers may have changed.

I think the Painting skill might be my favorite in the Sims 3. It's very easy to make money and become ultra-rich. In writing my Not-So-Starving Artist Guide, I learned a lot about this skill and what it takes to make great paintings. Painting is used heavily in the Immortal Dynasty Challenge.

Unfortunately, there is not much to say about the Skill as all three of the challenges associated with it can be completed by simply painting. There are some tips that can help you along the way though, and I'll provide them here.

Painting Skill Self-Employment Table
The Sims 3 Ambitions brought us the ability to label Sims self-employed in any of the money-making professions. To register as self-employed, simply gain a level in the skill and head to city hall. Here are the levels for this skill:

The Sims 3 Painting Self Employment Career
LevelJob RankNeeded to LevelBonus
1Paint Splasher$50-
2Canvas Cretin$75-
3Finger Painter$250-
4Paintbrush Patsy$750-
5Avante Garde Poseur$1000$500
6Art Gallery Rookie$2500-
7Illustrious Illustrator$5000$1500
8Prestigious Painter$10000-
9Acrylic Ace25000$2500
10Master of the BrushMax$5000

Painting Class
Your Sims can take a class in the painting skill at the school in town. Taking a class will raise the skill to the first level much faster than simply using the practice painting action. It's only $400.

Toddler Painting Skill
Toddlers have several parenting books that can be read to them to raise their Painting.

Efficiently raising the skill
You will definitely want to take the Artistic trait if you really want to learn to paint more quickly. Keep your Sim's mood up to raise painting faster. Actually, this applies to all skills in the Sims 3.

To help with keeping your Sim's mood up while painting, once you have enough money for some decorative items, make them a priority. The well decorated moodlet can really help to keep your Sim's mood in positive territory so the skill goes up faster, and they make better paintings.

Invest a little bit of time in the repair skill so that your Sims have less distractions. Achieve this by upgrading your kitchen and bathroom equipment to self-cleaning and/or unbreakable. Once you have the plumber challenge done, your plumbing should never break again.

Later, your Sims will be able to paint masterpieces.Mastering Painting in the Sims 3
To assist your Sim in making more money, and raising the skill faster, I recommend painting many small paintings at first. This will help you to complete the Brushmaster painting challenge faster, which causes your Sim to paint more quickly. They'll be able to churn out at least two Large paintings a day with a good mood.

Completion of all three challenges results in faster, far superior paintings. Save up for the Extra Creative lifetime reward, which will send your paintings' quality into the stratosphere. My record thus far is just over 5,000 for one painting, and my Sim can do two in one day.

To increase the likelihood of masterpieces, and boost the overall quality and value of all your art, keep your Sim's mood through the roof. Trips to the day spa will help here. Spend the money on the packages that boost your Sim's mood for an entire week. This is an investment that grants great returns. A happy Sim does everything better.

When you first start painting in the Sims 3, you'll paint childish pictures like this.If you want to get really hardcore about making money with painting, consider taking abilities like steel bladder. You can spend even more time painting. Your Sim will have a great retirement if you save up throughout his lifetime, and buy plenty of luxuries.

Painting Opportunities: There are many painting opportunities, and I won't list them all here. Several ask you to deliver a painting to a person. Sometimes it's easier to invite the recipient to your house, when you need to have it in your inventory. Several others ask you to deliver paintings for a hefty sum of money.

When you are given a painting opportunity to deliver X paintings, try to make them the best you can. Since you get an increase over the value of any painting turned in for such opportunities, the more valuable the paintings, the more money your Sim will make from it. These can be some of the best money-making opportunities in the Sims 3.

An interesting opportunity that may present itself has your Sim painting a fresco. If you see this opportunity, definitely do it as it's easy and boosts the value of all your Sim's future paintings. This really helps with wishes like the one to make a painting worth at least $5,000.

An Opportunity to Avoid: Alex wrote to me with some very interesting data related to the A Retreat to Inspiration Painting Opportunity. This opportunity raises the value of your next painting, however it's horribly broken. According to the information he sent me, the opportunity is bugged and causes your painting experience to decrease, causing you to have to paint more to get those very high value paintings you want. You'd have to make up for it by painting enough to recover that experience. So skip this at all costs to keep your painting values increasing steadily. Painters will be grateful for the tip, Alex!

He also sent an image along with this info. While I won't include the one showing the error with that opportunity, here's what a healthy painting career looks like:

Painting values in The Sims 3
The Sims 3 Skills
Advanced TechAlchemyAthleticBot MakingCharismaCollectingConsignment
Laser RhythmLogicMartial ArtsMixologyNectar MakingPaintingPhotography
RidingScienceScuba DivingSculptingSocial NetworkingStreet ArtWriting

Share Tips and FAQs (17)

Our Sims Forum is the place to go for faster answers to questions and discussions about the game. Use the form below to share your own experiences and provide helpful tips to other readers.

Anonymous says...
How do I get the sketchpad?
11th May 2014 12:45pm
torako says...
just buy it.
25th May 2014 1:43am
KStarr says...
25th September 2017 12:18pm
Sweet Cats says...
You need Sims 3 University Life in order to buy the sketchpad.

If you already have Sims 3 University Life, then go to Buy Mode>Entertainment>Hobbies and Skills, and it should be there.
3rd July 2014 5:34pm
Lara. says...
I'm on the xbox version and it says to paint a picture of another sim. I read on another website that you have to be level 7 to do it but how to I paint a picture of the sim?
3rd October 2013 5:09pm
Playalot says...
It is an option on the easel. Once your sim skill is high enough (L7) then click on easel and the target Sim comes to the easel to pose, your sim will take a photo (you press 'c')and then your sim will paint the portrait. There has to be another sim on the lot for the option to appear.
13th February 2018 8:04pm
Cara MiaKitty says...
So, how do I simply paint? I bought an easel but I have no idea how to use it -_-
7th May 2013 11:34pm
MasterPainter says...
All you have to do is click the easel... Simple as that!
23rd June 2013 11:24pm
Menhoset says...
To use the easel, you need to click on it, then press 'Paint...'. Next, click the size you want to paint and your sim will begin painting. :)
19th August 2017 5:23am
VtheHappyLurker says...
On the "A Retreat to Inspiration" opportunity, I did it with my current Sim and I've not notice an real decrease in her experience or the value of her paintings. I have been having her make around 3 to 4 small paintings a day to finish maxing out that skill and earn quick cash, so that may have had something to do with it.
26th May 2013 3:06pm
Anya says...
He said above that the opportunity is horribly broken and it decreases the painting skill for that sim. If you completely read the article you would have seen it.
27th June 2013 7:54pm
Kelsey says...
Hi I have two children that is s level 10 on painting skills can they still paint portraits or can't they. Please help
12th October 2013 5:52pm
Menhoset says...
Sometimes there is a glitch that stops your sims from painting portraits, which happened to me. Don't worry, though, because most of the time the wishes to 'Paint a portrait of [insert sim name]' only give 300.
19th August 2017 5:26am
Sabryna says...
Hi , my sims want to critique a pating how do i do that ?
23rd April 2014 3:45pm
Playalot says...
Click on a painting to 'view' if they have the Avant Garde trait they will critique rather than 'view'.
13th February 2018 8:06pm
Ashley says...
In my sims 3 game, it says to buy a painting worth $ do i buy paintings?
16th September 2018 7:36pm
Bib says...
Just go to your Build/Buy mode, then to Buy, Decor and lastly paintings, you’d look for something over or exactly $500. Hang it up and go back to live mode to earn your challenge points
2nd September 2019 3:24pm
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