Beginner Watercolour Autumn Raindrops - Step by Step | Emily Curtis | Skillshare

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Beginner Watercolour Autumn Raindrops - Step by Step

teacher avatar Emily Curtis, Artist/Painter

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

10 Lessons (26m)
    • 1. About the Class

    • 2. Art Supplies

    • 3. Choosing the Colours

    • 4. Drawing the Shapes

    • 5. Applying Masking Fluid

    • 6. Background

    • 7. Painting the Raindrops

    • 8. Adding Definition

    • 9. Adding Shading

    • 10. Class Project

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About This Class

Have you ever wanted to paint 3D looking raindrops? This class is all about how to do just that.

In this class you’ll learn an easy process for painting a rainy autumn raindrop scene using watercolours. I’ll guide you step-by-step from choosing the colours to producing the finished piece. By the end of this class you’ll have your very own raindrop painting and all the techniques you’ll need to recreate the piece in any colours you like.

In this class you will learn:

  • How to mix the colours used in this class
  • How draw realistic raindrop shapes
  • How to use masking fluid with watercolours
  • Step-by-step process of a watercolour raindrop scene

This class is suitable for all skill levels from beginner to professional as everything is laid out easily for you to follow along.

If you like this class, please leave a review to help me improve.

Happy Painting!

E xx

Meet Your Teacher

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Emily Curtis




Hi there! I'm Emily Curtis.

I'm a full-time artist who specialises in acrylic and watercolour painting. I produce work which portrays atmosphere and emotion, often inspired by moments in nature and urban life.

My love of painting began as a child when I was mesmerised by the colours in the fields surrounding my home. I spent hours watching sunsets and soon became obsessed with recreating the beauty of the world on paper. Now, I uses my art to prolong the moments that often feel too fleeting to be observed in everyday life.

I followed my passion into adulthood and gained a Fine Art Foundation Diploma from the University of Arts London. My art has also been seen in magazines such as 'World of In... See full profile

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1. About the Class: Hello, my name's Emily curtis. I'm a full-time artist based in the UK, and I specialize in acrylic and watercolor painting. Today, I'm going to show you how to paint this beautiful stormy raindrop scene using watercolors. We'll start by going through all the supplies we're going to need and any replacement so you can use. Then I'll take you through how to mix each of the colors in the painting. And I'll show you how to use masking fluid to prepare your painting. In the main section of this class, I'll be taking you through step-by-step instructions to painting 3D looking raindrops will talk through how to use light, shadow, and shaping to create a 3D illusion. This class is tailored towards beginners, so you don't need any prior knowledge of water colors for this class. As I'm going to walk you through all the techniques step-by-step. Let's begin. 2. Art Supplies: Before we start on the main project, I'll just take you through all the supplies will be using and any replacements you can use. First, our watercolors, you don't have to have this exact set. Just use whatever you've got. And with that, you'll want to use watercolor paper. I'll be using 300 GSM paper, which can be bought in paths like this. We're going to take the paper to the table before we start painting. I recommend using scotch tape will be using a pencil and Rabaa to draw out the shape of the raindrops. The rebel will also help us to remove the masking fluid at the end, which brings me on to masking fluid. This is the one that I have. You can use any masking fluid you like. And with this, you'll want to use a small pot of soapy water to soak your brushes in to protect them from the masking fluid. Then we have a water bowl and tissues to wash and dry a brushes. We'll be using three brushes in this class. One is a big square brush and this is about an inch wide. This isn't essential with just using this to cover the paper with water. Then we'll be using a smallest square brush. This is about a centimeter wide. And lastly, for the details, we'll be using a pointed brush. I'm using one incised, three. If you don't have a pointed brush, just use the smallest brush you can for the details. 3. Choosing the Colours: Before we start on the main painting, I'm going to take you through all the colors will be using and how to mix them. You don't have to use all the same colors as me. All of my instructions will still apply. If you use different colors, just use whatever you've got. You could even experiment by using completely different colors. We'll be using full colors in the background. The first is a dark grey for the sky. This is made from Payne's gray and burnt umber. I've tried to keep the color mixing in this class easy by only using three paints. These are burnt, umber, winds are red and Payne's gray. Payne's gray doesn't come in every palette. If you don't have it, you can mix a grey for the sky using any blue and a brown. Oh, if you want to keep it super simple, just watered down, you're black. The second color is a reddish brown for the autumn trees, mixed from burnt umber and windsor red. Then we'll be building up the vibrancy with a darker, reddish brown mixed from burnt umber, Windsor red, and Payne's gray. Finally, we'll be adding in the darkest shadows on the trees with a deep brown made from burnt umber, Windsor red, and Payne's gray. We'll be using two colours to paint the raindrops. The first is a gray mixed from Payne's gray and burnt umber. The other is a reddish brown mixed from burnt umber and windsor red. And finally, we'll be adding some shadows with a gray mixed from Payne's gray and burnt umber. Haley have the finished color chart. I recommend keeping this close by so that you can refer back to it during the class. 4. Drawing the Shapes: We're going to start off this piece by drawing the shape and the placement of the raindrops in pencil. I haven't taped to my paper to the table yet because drawing is easier if you can move the paper around, try to keep your pencil markings quite light so they don't show through the watercolor wants the painting is finished. You can either copy my raindrops or follow your own. I recommend starting with the bigger raindrops first and then filling in the gaps with smaller and medium sizes. Make sure the raindrops are asymmetrical and odd shapes. As raindrops in real life are rarely perfect circles. But we want to use a range of sizes because it's going to make the painting look more realistic. Once you're happy with the shape of your raindrops, move on to the next lesson. 5. Applying Masking Fluid: Now the raindrops have been drawn. We can start filling them in with masking fluid. Make sure to dip your brush into soapy water before dipping it into the masking fluid. This will prevent the masking food from sticking to the head of the brush. I'm still not taping the paper to the table because it's a lot easier to fit in the rain drops accurately if you can move the paper around. I still suggest using an old brush for this. You don't want to risk ruining a nice brush by clogging it up with masking fluid. Believe me, there is no rescuing it from that fate. I like to have a little paintbrush graveyard on the side made up a brushes that are just paused at best for painting, but aren't ready to be thrown away yet. That way I can resurrect one of these anytime I need to use masking fluid. Masking fluid acts a bit like a wax resist. Once it's dry, it will form a plasticky cover over the paper, which will stop the paint from settling into those areas. So you want to take your time over this step and make sure the masking fluid ends up exactly where you want it to be. Because otherwise, when you take it off, you're going to have areas of white to where you might not necessarily want them. You'll masking fluid should be liquidity when you're applying it. If it isn't, makes sure to give the bottle a good shake to loosen it up. Once you covered all the raindrops in masking fluid, leave it to thoroughly dry before starting on the next lesson. 6. Background: Make sure the masking fluid is fully dry before starting on this lesson. If it isn't, it won't resist the water and then the painting will be ruined before we've even started. First, we're going to prepare the paper for the wet and wet technique by using a big brushed cover the paper with water. You may need to use a few layers to completely saturate your paper. The thicker the paper you're using, the more layers you're going to need to use to socket. I've now taped my paper to the table to stop it from bullpen as we apply water to it. Give the water about ten seconds to sink into the paper before you start painting on it. In this time, you can grab your square brush and start mixing up the grey for the sky. As this is the begin as cos, we're not going to do anything too complicated in the background. We're just going to use grey for the sky because it's raining. And we're going to use this to cover the top half of the painting. Hey, we applying wet paint onto wet paper and that's what we call the wet on wet technique. Keep your brushstrokes free and imprecise. We want to create some unevenness because the variations in tone will help to create the appearance of clouds. Now we're mixing up the ground color as it's currently autumn. I'm going to use a reddish-brown just starting by covering the whole of the bottom half in this color. Make sure not to leave any gaps. Next, I'm going in with the second layer to build up the colors. Notice how I vary the angle of my brush, particularly where the Brown meets the grey. We're trying to create the look of trees against the sky. Painting in spiky nines with my brush will help to show the tops of the trees. Now i'm going over some of the areas of the sky again to put in more contrast. If there are any areas you want to make it lighter, just brushed some clean water over them. You don't need to worry about blending the colors out neatly because the wet on wet technique will make everything blur out softly. I'm going over the trees again to make sure the colors are nice and rich. This time, mixing the brown with a bit more red to Add-ins and vibrancy leaves some gaps between your brush drugs to create areas of light and shadow in the trees. Finally, painting the darkest shadows on the trees by mixing some of Payne's gray in with the Brown. You want the shadows to go mainly along the bottom of the painting. Once you're happy with your background, leave the piece to dry before starting on the next lesson. 7. Painting the Raindrops: Now the piece is dry. We can stop painting the rain drops. The first thing we have to do is remove the masking fluid. You can do this by lightly rubbing over the masking fluid with a rubber. Or you could pay it off with your fingers. Once all the masking fluid has been removed, we are ready to pick up a pointed brush and start mixing up the colors for the raindrops. Raindrops reflect their surroundings. So we're going to paint them using the same colors that we put in the background. The surface of a raindrop is bent a bit like the surface of a spoon. And Nike spoon. Raindrops reflect an upside down version of the weld. So when you paint your raindrops, the color in the sky is going to go at the bottom and the color of the ground will go at the top. At this stage with just putting in the base colors of the raindrops. So you want to make sure you're keeping the colors nice and light. You can use a tissue to dab off the paint if you think it's getting a bit too dark. If you look closely at raindrops, you'll notice that often night catches around the edges, leaving a white rim around them. So I'm just leaving the very edges of my raindrops white. This is also going to help the raindrop stand out against the background. I'm only using the brown on the smaller raindrops and leaving the rest white because the smallest surface will reflect less detail. The colors and shapes reflected in raindrops will walk and curve to fit the shape of the rain drop. You can see here, I'm painting the brown into a curved shape at the bottom to mimic the shape of the raindrop curves. Keep your brushstrokes gentle, just using the very tip of the brush. Okay. Once you've finished painting in the base colors, we can move on to the next lesson, where we'll start to add in the definition on buildup that 3D shape. 8. Adding Definition: Now we're going to start adding some definition to the raindrops. Starting by taking the gray and just painting round the bottom edge of the raindrops, still remembering to leave that rim of white around the outside. I'm keeping my markings deliberately lies at the moment. Just using this layer to attain some like shadows. We'll go over it again later to build up some depth. And now we're going to take the brown and add some definition at the very top of the raindrop by tracing around the top half, remember to leave a gap of white at the very edge of the rain drop. On the bigger raindrops, you could paint some lines going over the center as well as the outside to show the curved surface, this will emphasize the 3D effect. You could blend out some of the lines because the raindrops are reflecting trees, which are imprecise shapes. Make sure you're using the very tip of the brush when painting the smaller raindrops to keep your markings really fine. If you feel that anything is to dock, you can lighten the area by rewetting it and then dubbing the paint off with the tissue. Now I'm going back over any areas I feel a to light with a second layer to make sure the shape of my raindrops are really defined. See how I've now taken on a 3D appearance. Okay. Once you're happy with your raindrops, leave your work to dry. Before moving on to the next lesson. 9. Adding Shading: Now the raindrops or dry, we can start adding the shadows. Mix up your Shadow Color, and then use a pointed brush to paint some shadows underneath each raindrop. Keep your Paint Night and watered down. Raindrops do cost a slight shadow on the surface that on because they aren't solid objects, this shadow is never going to be to dock. Swipe to the outer edge of the shadows with a clean brush to blend away any harsh lines. Light shadows have less defined edges. The shadows are really going to help create the illusion that all raindrops are sitting on a window pane. Make sure you decide where the light sources in a painting before you start painting the shadows, the only light we have in this painting is coming from the sky. So the shadows are being cast downwards. If we have put in street lights or anything creating light from below or to the side, then the shadows might be cost at a different angle. Once you're happy with the way your shadows look, leave your work to dry. 10. Class Project: Here is the finished face up-close feel class project. Try creating your own watercolor raindrops by following along with my instructions. Post your results down below as I'd love to see them. And if you post your results on Instagram, do tag me so I can feed to you on my stories. When removing the tape from your painting, tear it away from the painting so that if it starts to rip, which it data bit, haha, then it won't rip into the painting too much. Do leave a review as it helps me out a lot. And if there's anything you want me to do a tutorial on net to me know, you can find more of my work on Instagram at, out of MLE Curtis and on my website, www dot MIT hyphen I hope you enjoyed this class and I'll see you in the next one.