Here’s an easy landscape watercolor painting for beginners. In this step-by-step video tutorial, we will show you how to create a beautiful painting with just five simple steps. Along the way there will be plenty of tips and advice for beginners to use on their next masterpiece. So grab your paints and get ready to create some magic!
Step-by-step process for painting an Easy Watercolor Landscape
The breakdown for how it’s done is below. Be sure to use the images as a guide, and read the instructions if you need more info.
But first let’s talk about the materials we will use in this watercolor landscape tutorial
You will need the following items:
- A watercolor palette with at least 8 colors; yellow ochre, lemon yellow, ultramarine blue, cerulean blue, cobalt blue, cobalt turquoise, burnt sienna and neutral tint.
- A set of paint brushes, including Silver Black Velvet Jumbo, Princeton Neptune pointed round #6, #12, and Dagger 1/2″ brush for details.
- Paper: we recommend Fabriano Artistico 140 lb. (300gsm) cold press paper, size is 6″ x 9″
- Firm board to paint on, water reservoir, paper towels and #2 pencil
- Now that you have all your supplies ready, let’s get started
Add the drawing – Step #1
- Draw your design on paper using #2 pencil.
- Don’t fuss with all the details, just add a line for the ground plane, and basic contour for trees.
- Also note that the drawing is very light in value because if it’s dark the pencil lines will show on the finished painting.
Note: Scroll down bellow if you need a template for this painting. There you can easily download it and transfer the design to your paper.
Paint the sky using variegated wash – Step #2
- Mix some color for your sky area.
- We recommend using tea mixture of cerulean blue. Remember tea mixtures have more water than pigment. Colors should be very dull, or weak.
- Start at the top of the sky and work down about halfway.
- From here you will change hues to alizarin crimson. Again, a tea mixture and it’s important to note that this hue is VERY intense. So, just a small amount of pigment will do.
- Take the alizarin crimson all the way to the bottom of the paper.
- If the top of the sky is flat, or dull, add another stroke of blue so that it has a gradation to it.
- Allow this to dry 100%!
Add tree foliage – Step #3
- Paint the tree foliage and trunks.
- Do that my mixing cerulean blue, cadmium yellow lemon, with a touch of burnt sienna, ultramarine blue & neutral tint. The latter three hues will gray the green so that it’s not so saturated.
- Use the tip and side of the bristles when painting foliage. This will create better variety of brushstrokes.
- To avoid a flat green wash drop in some burnt sienna (known as charging), and try using damp, clean brush to remove areas of paint (known as lifting)
Paint the ground plane – Step #4
- Add a ground plane using a medium pointed round brush.
- I recommend using yellow ochre and apply it to the entire ground area. To create variety use neutral tint in the shadow area.
- If the wash is flat try adding a little more yellow ochre, or some burnt sienna to the mix.
- Remember, you don’t want the ground plane to be dull. Many beginner watercolor painters tend to make the ground too light in value which makes the finish a little soft.
Add darker hues – Step #5
- Paint details but only after everything has dried 100%
- Start by adding tree trunks using neutral tint, burnt sienna and whatever green may be left on the palette. The green will tone down the dark brown so that the trunks don’t become too heavy, or visually distracting.
- Work some darker tones back into the tree shadows and add a pop of red to spice up the overall aesthetics.
- While the cast shadow under trees is still wet blend in green wash and allow it to run down towards bottom of paper.
- Congrats! You are done!!!
Below you will see the finished painting along with template. Feel free to download them if you would like to give the easy watercolor landscape painting a try. Were you able to create an amazing landscape painting? Leave a comment below and let us know!
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