I hope this video is finding you well and safe. Currently, I’m writing you from self quarantine in my own home. If you are anything like me – your mind probably has a tendency to wander and fret over especially when you find yourself cramped in your home. So, hopefully this little project will get you out of the slumps and cheer your heart. Make sure to watch the video below for a step by step process. OR READ THE ARTICLE below with each step. So without further ado – here’s an easy way to paint a Watercolor Galaxy and pass the time away…
step #1 - Prep your space
FIRST - STRETCH YOUR PAPER
- Since I will be working in a watercolor journal – I’ll be using large clips to secure my paper flat. This will help me later to prevent puddles of water and paint – which could affect my painting. Our goal is to have as flat of a surface as possible while painting. But realize when your are mixing water and paper – there will be some buckling. So don’t fret.
SECOND - MASK IT OUT
- Next – I recommend using masking tape to block out a rectangle on your paper. This will also help keep your paper flat as well as make a nice sleek line around your painting.
THIRD - PULL OUT SUPPLIES
- At the end of this tutorial I’ve included a list of all the supplies I used with affiliate links. But feel free to use whatever you have on hand. You can substitute inexpensive craft paint for white and black ink and Winsor & Newton Cotman series tube paints for your watercolors. 😄
step #2 - set up the frame work or your painting
FIRST - START LIGHT
- I want to create a light blue cloud texture in the middle of my painting – so that is where I will be starting first. With your lightest blue – I’m using horizon blue from Holbein paint on dry paper a diagonal streak of color across your page.
SECOND - ADD CORNER COLORS
- I added magenta to my colors as shown. Once again – to have the most control possible – I’m painting with wet paint on dry paper.
THIRD - CONNECT THE SECTIONS
- While your sections are still wet on your paper – next paint a blue in the remaining white areas – allowing the light blue and magenta to mingle with the new color. Remember that you can push color around using a wet brush and even lift or pick up color using a paper towel. Try as best as possible to keep that diagonal stripe light while your colors blend on the page.
step #3 - BUILD INTENSITY
FIRST - ADD MORE PAINT
- Since our paper is still wet – the new color should blend out is a wispy effect. Then with a wet brush – push the paint to where you desire it to be. For this section – I’m using watercolor concentrates – but you can use tube paint watercolors that have been diluted with watercolor and then with a pipette – add the color to your paper in a similar manner.
SECOND - CONTINUE BUILDING COLOR
- This time I used for magenta directly from my palette and layered it over my pink and blue sections. Since the paper is still wet – the blues on the page and the new magenta paint should mingle creating mesmerizing deep blues and purples. Continue adding color until your are satisfied.
step #4 - ADD TEXTURE
NOW - ADD TEXTURE WITH PLASTIC WRAP
- While your paper is still wet – apply plastic wrap to the paper in a crumbled up form. And press the plastic down on your paper creating an assortment of shapes beneath. Then set this aside and allow to dry. This took about 15 minutes for me – but could take longer depending on the humidity in your environment.
step #5 - REPEAT LAST TWO STEPS
BUILD INTENSITY & TEXTURE
- Once again – using your blues and magenta paints – build your color intensity or vibrancy on the paper. Since we are working with watercolor – the way will create depth as well as color richness is through layering or glazing. But be careful not to over abuse your paper with too many layers or too much water. If you find yourself using too much water and having puddles on your paper – simple use a paper towel and lightly dab your paper to pick up any excess paint and water. Once you are happy with your galaxy colors – once again while the paper is wet apply the plastic wrap to your paper and allow to dry.
step #6 - ADD STARS
- Now for the fun part – with your white ink or paint – slightly dilute it and then with a tooth brush splatter stars on the paper wherever you desire. Play around with different ways of holding your brush for the best splatter effects. For me – I liked holding my brush at a perpendicular angle from my paper and them with my thumb flicking the bristles. This helped create more dot like stars on my page. Once you are done – allow the stars to dry throughly.
step #7 - ADD HOUSES
FIRST - OUTLINE YOUR HOUSES
- With a pencil – outline where you would like your little homes to be located. I placed mine on the corner edge of my paper.
SECOND - FILL HOUSES IN
- FIRST: Mix your blue and black to create a nice deep navy blue. This color should be more of a milky consistency on your palette.
- THEN: Then paint the foreground of your houses. This includes the hill and two houses. After filling in the foreground – with your blow dryer dry the section throughly.
- NEXT: Paint your background – this includes the trees and large house. After your done – once again dry your section throughly.
- FOURTH: With a small brush – add dark blue lines to the roof of your houses, windows, and doors. Then add small bushes to the front of your homes like so as well as a small puffs of chimney smoke. Then with the same color slightly diluted – add trees behind the large house as shown.
step #8 - FINAL DETAILS
ADDING A SPIRAL
- This next step is totally up to you – but I felt inspired by Van Gogh’s Starry Night – I wanted to add a small spiral in the sky as well as some more glittering stars.
- So How I did this…
- FIRST – ADD A SKY SPIRAL
- With a deep purple blue paint mixture – that is diluted down to a milky consistency – I painted a swooping spiral in the sky as shown.
- NEXT – ADD LARGER STARS
- With a small brush – I added stars in certain locations of the painting.