Smooth out the surface, apply primer then paint.
Don't paint or stain the door in direct sunlight.
Make sure you have the proper ventilation if done indoors.
Use either a high quality brush, roller sleeve, or sprayer.
If using paint mix well.
Stain / varnish, read the direction.
The two following links provides everything you need to know about painting including lots of tips.
You may have to copy and paste the links.?
I don't know the exact steps you should follow, but you must apply a primer before applying the paint.
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