Water That Looks Right
This lesson shows how to create the look of calm water with easy techniques and easy methods.
Easy Way To Water And Reflections
No matter the size or form of the body of water you are painting, there are basic techniques and principles that will work for all; from the smallest puddle to open ocean.
Once you have mastered the techniques along with where and how to use them, you’ll be able to represent any body of water effectively in your paintings. This lesson shows how to use the simplest techniques to create calm water.
Important Characteristics Of Water
Water has two important characteristics. Creating a believable sense of water in your paintings means creating the illusion of these two characteristics.
Water is HORIZONTAL – The surface of water in most conditions is flat and horizontal. Rougher water and open ocean may have significant waves, but the surface is still fundamentally horizontal. It is important to create and reinforce the notion ‘horizontal-ness’ on the shapes that represent water in your paintings.
Water is REFLECTIVE – water itself is transparent and has no color. The color we see on the surface of water is due to several factors, the most important of which is reflectivity. Reflections on the surface of water happen in particular ways that are easy to simulate in your paintings.
Water is also moving. The surface of even the stillest water is easily disturbed by wind and the action of creatures and objects. Movement on the surface interrupts the effects of reflection and, with enough action, the horizontal-ness. In a painting it is the intersection and interaction of ‘horizontal-ness’ and reflection that will create a sense of movement.
Important Techniques For Painting Water
Every wash and mark needed to create water in a watercolor painting is nothing more than an easy, basic watercolor painting technique.
Graded washes are simply wet-in-wet washes with changes to the amount of water and paint. Some deft work with a wet wash done with the side of the brush will result in rough texture that simulates sparkling highlights. Although the brush is not dry, this is essentially the drybrush technique.
These four watercolor painting techniques are essential for every watercolor painting including those that have water.
What you’ll need:
- Watercolor paper – approx 11″ x 7″
- Colors: Cobalt Blue, Raw Sienna, Lemon Yellow, Cadmium Red
- Brushes: Medium Round, Small Round, Rigger, Small 1/4″ Flat
Download : DRAWING LAYOUT
How To Paint Water (and More)
This a group of lessons includes a series on painting water as well as many other important elements of the landscape - trees, rocks, grasses and more.
They are basic, easy lessons that use basic techniques. They are accessible by anyone are really great for beginners.
Practicing a particular subject or skill in isolation makes it easy to concentrate on that one thing in order to master it before working on more complex scenes.
Basic Watercolor Painting Techniques
Every watercolor painter should know and master these four techniques – wer-in-wet, dry-in-wet, drybrush and lift. Lessons on all four are part of a series of fourteen lessons that are just for beginners.
Learn and practice these four techniques – they are fundamental to every watercolor painting, no matter how complex or accomplished.
These ideas and techniques are often overlooked in classes and workshops to the detriment of the student. Learn and practice them even if you are not a beginner.
Other Lesson Subjects
FREE Lessons For Beginners!
A group of fourteen FREE watercolor painting lessons that will get you started. Learn the techniques and paint some simple scenes to put them into practice.
Landscape Painting Lessons
Our largest group of lessons – 24 in all – includes easy, intermediate and advanced lessons covering important techniques and composition ideas. Click To See All Landscape Painting Lessons
Seascape Painting Lessons
The ocean is a continual source of inspiration for artists. It’s constant movement and change is compelling and intimidating. This series of lessons will teach you to handle seascapes with confidence and ease.
Flower and Still Life Painting Lessons
This set of lessons include a range of subjects, techniques and methods as well as everything from quick sketches to longer, more finished floral and still life paintings.
Quick Sketches and Unusual Subjects
In this group of lessons you’ll find a lot of unusual subjects and quick sketching projects. Unusual subjects are those we don’t normally think of painting – often everyday objects that are ‘invisible’ most of the time. Quick sketching is a way to build many important watercolor painting skills. The sketches can also be developed into finished paintings.
Skill Building Learning Tracks
Tips and Tricks For Watercolor Painting
Video tutorials with easy how to’s and other tips to make watercolor painting easier and more convenient. Most of these are FREE lessons – watch without a Premium Membership.
How To Paint Elements Of The Landscape
How to paint trees, skies, clouds, rocks, weeds and more. These lessons focus on individual objects that are common in landscape and seascapes. Every lesson covers ideas and techniques specific to each.
How To Paint Water
Water shows up in landscapes and seascapes in many different ways. Adding water in any form – puddles to open ocean – requires some special considerations and techniques. These lessons show how.
Value is arguably the most important characteristic of color to learn and use in painting. It has two primary functions for the artist – as a fundamental component of Composition and as a way to create a sense of light and form. These lessons cover both functions.
Color is an aspect of painting that can take a lifetime of study to really understand. The 25 lessons in this group are is meant to introduce you to the various aspects of color and simple ways to explore color schemes, color choices and color combinations for your paintings.
Value To Color
Value Composition Sketches are extremely valuable tools for creating solid and dynamic paintings. It can be difficult to maintain the values as designed in the composition once you begin working in color. There are 20 lessons in this group that work through the process of creating a value sketches and then converting it to color while maintaining the values as designed.
Light And Form
Recreating the effect of real world light on objects in a painting means creating the changes in color and value that simulate the real-world effect. Although the effect of light has many different visual impacts, there are certain, tried and true ways of creating patterns of light and shadow in our paintings. This group of 14 lessons will get you started.
Basic Practical Linear Perspective
All linear perspective systems are based on the simple idea that objects that are farther from you appear to be smaller. Perspective, or linear perspective, is a system for representing the illusion of depth on a two-dimensional surface. There are 9 lessons in this section that will introduce basic linear perspective and show practical ways to use it in your paintings.