Learn To Paint Spheres In Watercolor

Spheres Are The Fundamental Shape Of Many Common Subjects

In this lesson, you’ll learn how to paint a sphere in light. It is important to know how light and shade look on a sphere because they are the underlying shape in many objects we love to paint!

Learn To Paint Spheres

Spheres are really any shape that is rounded along all of its surface.  The technical definition would only include perfectly round objects like a planet or a ball. For artists, it’s important to include objects that are round or “rounded” in the definition of spheres. This is because rendering a round or rounded object in two dimensions requires very similar treatment in the handling of light and shade.

Core of the Shadow

Like cylinders, the rounded surface of spheres and spherical objects mean that the surface will gradually turn away from the light, creating a soft-edged transition from light to shade. Along this soft transition edge will be a somewhat darker area known as the “core of the shadow”.  The presence of the core of the shadow is a real phenomenon that is observable. Creating a convincing two dimensional representation of a three dimensional, spherical object requires getting this element done right.

Drawing Layout For Any Painting

One note on the drawing layout. The downloadable layouts are done with heavy lines to make it easy to see and copy onto your watercolor paper. It is best not to draw the lines too heavy on your paper, especially in the sky, since there is a good chance the lines will show through the paint. It’s not a deal-breaker, but those heavy pencil lines are sometimes a distraction.

What you’ll need

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