The first thing I want to say – before I even get into this tutorial – is you need to approach this painting as an experiment of you learning how watercolor works and most importantly how to tame it’s stubborn wild side.
With that being said – remember that your painting is absolutely going to look different from mine – especially since we are working wet in wet. I’ve already painted this painting twice and both times while the have aspects that are similar they are still very different from one another.
now that we got that out of the way – here are the supplies I will be using to paint our whale…
For me – stretch my paper is nothing really complicated. I simply take a large drawing board that I picked up from my local craft store and lay my paper flat again the surface. Then with cheap basic masking tape – I tape all the side down until the paper is snuggly secured to the board.
Similar to cooking – it’s always best to prep your ingredients or in our case our supplies – before we even begin painting. For this illustration – you will need to prep _________ things
now that we are all prepped for our illustration – let’s go ahead and begin. the first simple step we will be doing is coating our entire whale in a salt/water mixture. Your layer should be somewhat dome like – not to thin but not to large that you paint will overflow the borders.
WHY USE SALT WATER? The reason we are using salt water instead of plain water for this part is because when we add our paint to the paper – because of the salt – our paint will slightly float – allowing us some extra time to play around with and move the color as we will.
Once you have coated your entire inside of your whale with water – making sure to get all of your intricate edges – it is now time to add paint.
With a dropper – either the bottle caps from PH Martin’s line or a pipette with ink consistency watercolor paint – drop 5 to 7 droplets of paint at different locations on your whale.
for me – I placed 3 drops of Turquoise blue place here and then added 2 drops of Norway blue.
finally step number five – is you harnessing the power of water. Here is where our illustrations are going to look different – simply because we are painting wet in wet. But no worries my friend – you have more control than you think when it comes to watercolor. And here are some ways to harness it’s power.
this is by far my favorite step – if you re working quickly and your paper is still wet – add white ink to the top portions of your whale and locations where you might find a bright highlight – such as the top of the tail or front flipper. Now I causation you – don’t use the ink on the creepy cloth – because it will cement it down onto your paper. However, any other area is free game. I absolutely love adding ink to this illustration because it almost looks like foamy waves crashing over the whale.
However, if your paper is too dry and you find your ink just glowing on the paper. No worries – simply hit it with a wet brush and watch the ink spread out like magic.
I bet you can hardly believe but we are nearly done now. After you are happy with how your ink and paint is setting up (oh and always remember you can add more paint or ink if need be) – then go ahead and dry out your whale entirely with a blow dryer or heat gun.
After it’s dry – simply trace over your pencil lines with a micron pen and that’s it – you are done! Simply and easy watercolor wet in wet illustration to now show off to your friends.
And that my friend is how to paint whales with watercolor :) I hope you enjoyed this watercolor whale tutorial.
Now go off and hang your cute whale painting on your wall or share it with your friends.
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As always ya’ll it’s been a pleasure and I will see you next time.