4 Watercolour Painting Tips For Beginners

Posted on May 26, 2016 By

Watercolour Painting1. Transparency

One of the key properties of watercolour paint is that it’s transparent. This is important to bear in mind, because it means that you can see through the layers of paint. It also means that you can’t cover mistakes up by going over them – try to go over a mistake and you’ll still be able to see the paint you’re trying to cover up. Watercolour paint’s transparency gives paintings a sort of ethereal quality, which is why many choose to use it.

2. Colour change

Part of mastering painting with watercolours is being able to get the exact colour you want. One of the problems with watercolours is that, when watercolour paint dries, it always looks a lot paler and lighter when dry; when it’s wet, on the other hand, it’s usually a lot darker. Bear this in mind when creating your painting, so you get the colours you want. If a layer of paint comes out too light, you can always paint another layer on top of it. Get a spare piece of paper and do a few tests to make sure the colour that comes out is the one you want.

3. Fast drying time

Watercolour paint can dry very fast. When painting with watercolours, you should be prepared to work quickly. You can apply retarders and other mediums to the paint to slow down its drying time, giving you more time to work with the paint before it starts drying off. If you’re thinking of working with paint that dries quickly, it’s a good idea to do a bit of pre-planning. Once you know how you’re going to approach the painting and have thought about everything you’re going to do you can just go ahead and complete the painting without the fast drying time affecting your work.

4. Solubility

When you’re painting with watercolours, you should be careful not to touch any areas that you’ve already finished. The reason for this is because watercolour paint remains soluble even once it’s dried. If you’ve finished a section of a painting and your paintbrush, loaded with watercolour paint, comes into contact with the dried area, the paint in the dried area will revert back into paint. However, you can use the paint’s solubility to your advantage: you can touch up a dried area to fix a mistake, remove some paint to make the colour a bit lighter or mix more colour into it.