Watercolour Landscapes (Further Tips)

Watercolour Landscapes

South Downs View UK by Ray McSharry
South Downs View UK by Ray McSharry

Painting landscapes in watercolour is a lot of fun and if you are a beginner, you will enjoy the end result of your work even more if you allow yourself to connect with the creativity that is inside you. It is true that you have to learn a few new techniques and skills but if you let your heart take over, you will improve very rapidly as you gain mastery over handling different scenes and landscapes.

Painting On Location

I find that I get even more inspired when I paint watercolour landscapes outdoors. When you are outdoors, there are several fascinating elements all around you that you can consider and incorporate into your painting. The weather, as well as lighting conditions changes quickly when you are sitting outdoors and this will affect your judgment and give you a whole new perspective.

Painting Indoors

I would suggest that you select a few pictures of watercolour landscapes that you are interested in painting and then sit at your desk comfortably in your work area while using your favourite paintings as inspiration. Practice with light strokes and complete a few drawings before you begin to use the watercolours.

Paintings do not have to be replicas of the picture or scene you have selected. I would advise you to use your imagination and add your own twist to the picture. For instance, you can introduce a tree or a bird sitting on a bush to create interest in the painting.

Start your painting using an idea and ponder on how best you can express your objective. Use your instinct and eye to motivate your work and depending on your mood, let the painting evolve. Imagine you are embarking on an artistic journey and enjoy what you do.

Tips On Watercolour Landscape Painting

  • Remember that watercolours look stronger and more intense when it is wet and as it dries it becomes lighter. It is easy to start from light to dark shades when you use colour washes. And it is possible to make your painting come alive with layers of colour and stop when you feel that you have got it right.
  •  It is also not difficult to fix a mistake. This is because the watercolour that has dried can be corrected by wetting the dried paint. Simply wet the brush with water and “lift” the paint off or introduce another colour. Take care to do this gently or you will damage the surface.
  • Make sure you have your supplies handy. Use a palette to mix your colours and try different hues and tones before you start painting.
  • Adding the right amount of water to the paint is important. Dab your brush on a dry cloth before painting. You can always remove some paint from your brush hairs by soaking up the excess.

The Right Lighting Makes All The Difference.

The light factor is crucial when you attempt landscapes. This makes all the difference to creating a realistic and authentic look.  Use a daylight bulb that can be angled if possible over the painting.

Place a paper over the light to diffuse it. Note the shadows that fall when you sketch different scenes and observe the highlights. You will soon learn how to be aware of light changes as you go along.

Spare The Detail And Improve The Painting

When you decide on a particular landscape, remember that it is not necessary to put in all the details that you see on the card or picture that you are copying. You will find it easier to deal with the picture when you rearrange some of the elements in the watercolour landscapes. Make sure to introduce more detail in the foreground and less in the background. This draws the right focus to the landscape painting.

If you are a beginner and have completed a particular landscape, try doing the same picture again using a different season or mood. Look at it from a different light and you will get inspired into creating a different painting from the same scene.

Mixing Colours

One of the important aspects of painting is to learn how to mix colours especially greens and yellows for landscapes. Some of the paints have the right colours that you can use straight off the tube but if you are combining blue and yellow pigments, try introducing glazing to get a good optical mix.

You will be using a lot of different shades of green when painting landscapes. You may have to mix some yellow or just use dark green where required. Learn how to mix red and yellows as well for painting the skies.

Painting In Groups And Getting In Touch

Painting watercolour landscapes can be fascinating and discussing it with another enthusiast can be even more fascinating as you exchange ideas with each other. Why not get involved with a local group where you can practice painting your beautiful landscapes in watercolour?

If no such group is readily available to you, why not get in touch with us here and at least you will have some like-minded budding artists to swap ideas with.

If this is an idea that appeals to you or if you are looking for some tips that you can use, get in touch with me and please do take a look at some of our other related pages on the sub-menus.