How to Paint Loose Peonies | Watercolor Tutorial & Sketchbook Series





Today, we have a challenge! We'll use just one paintbrush, to be exact a water brush, and a limited palette to paint these beautiful loose and plump peonies.



If you missed my last tutorial from this series, check out my previous post.


SUPPLIES

Canson Art Book Montrval Watercolor (140 lb/300g 10 in x 7 in) - You can get the sketchbook here: http://amzn.to/2GQGRuV St. Petersburg Watercolors also known as Nevskaya Politra or White Nights (http://amzn.to/2GKBJsp) by Yarka, but you can use any watercolors you have. Brushes: Water brush: https://amzn.to/2LmnGe8 (exactly the one I was using)


Description

1. Lightly sketch each peony with a pencil. The drawing should be penciled lightly to mark the boundaries and placement of the flowers.

2. Add clear water over peonies and leaves. Let the water soak into the paper until it leaves a subtle sheen on the surface.

3. We're going to use a limited palette for the painting: violet pink, carmine, indigo, and cadmium yellow. For the flowers, we'll use a mixture of violet pink, carmine, and indigo. Indigo is used to darken the colors, for the shadow areas. For the leaves, we're going to use a mixture of indigo with cadmium yellow to create green and then a variety of that mixture to get lighter green color and darker green color.

4. Lightly paint a mixture of violet pink and carmine all over peonies. Paint in the direction of the petals. In a way, try mimicking the flower petals with the brushstrokes. Add a little bit of cadmium yellow to liven up the cool pink color.

5. Paint with cadmium yellow first over the leaves and then paint the green color we premixed previously (a mixture of indigo + cadmium yellow)

6. Let the first layer of paint dry and then add shadows and darken the petals with the mixture of violet pink, carmine, and indigo (the color will be more on the purple side). Don't squeeze out water out of the water brush to not dilute the paint. Continue to add details and darkening of the flowers and leaves. Dry the painted layers before going to the next step.

7. Using wet-on-dry technique, add details, and darkening of petals and leaves. If you feel that the highlights (reflected light) are lost, you can add the white back to the painting with a white sharpie, white gel pen, or white gouache and a small brush.

That's it! Hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Stay tuned for more watercolor tutorials.

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