Beginner Yellow Forest Watercolour - Step by Step | Emily Curtis | Skillshare

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Beginner Yellow Forest Watercolour - 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

8 Lessons (15m)
    • 1. About the Class

    • 2. Art Supplies

    • 3. Choosing the Colours

    • 4. Wet-on-Wet Technique

    • 5. Background

    • 6. Midground

    • 7. Foreground

    • 8. Class Project

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About This Class

Have you ever wanted to capture light coming through the forest trees? This class is all about how to do just that.

In this class you’ll learn an easy process for painting a warm, yellow forest 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 forest painting and all the techniques you’ll need to recreate the piece in any colours you like.

This is the beginner version of this class. If you’d like more of a challenge, you can access the intermediate version through my artist profile.

In this class you will learn:

  • How to select colours for a forest painting
  • How to use the wet-on-wet technique with watercolours
  • Step-by-step process of painting a watercolour forest

This class is recommended for beginners to intermediate.

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 use 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 Int... 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 a specialized in acrylic on watercolor painting . Today I'm going to show you how to paint this lovely light through the trees. Forest painting. This is the beginner watercolor version. To find the intermediate version of this painting. Just go through my profile. 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. First, I'll take you through all the art supplies were going to use on any replacements you can use. Then we'll build a color chart together off the colors were using in this class, and I'll teach you how to mix all of them. I'll also give a quick lesson on the wet on wet technique on how to use it in the main section of this class. I'll guide you through each section of the painting, step by step. Until we reached the final product. Let's begin 2. Art Supplies: we're going to start by talking through all the supplies will be using in this class. First up is watercolor paints. This is the set that I'm using, but you don't have to have the same ones. Just use what you've got. You'll also need to use watercolor paper. I'm using 300 GSM paper and it could be bought in pads like this. You'll want to tape your paper to the table to stop it from bending. When it gets wet, I recommend using Scotch tape, and then we have the standard water bold and tissues toe. Wash and dry your brushes. We'll be using three brushes in this class. One is a big square brush, and this is an inch wide. This brush is optional. I'm only using it toe wet my paper, so if you don't have it, just use the closest thing you've got. The second brush is another square brush, but smaller. This time it's about half an inch and finally appointed brush. This one's in size five. If you don't have appointed brush, any small brush will do 3. Choosing the Colours: Before we start on the main project, I'm going to take you through all the colors in the painting and how to mix them. In this painting, I'll be using lemon yellow winds, orange burnt umber and cerulean blue. If you don't have these exact colors, that's fine. Just use the closest thing you've got, or you could experiment by using completely different colors. All the techniques are used in this class will still apply. The lightest color I'll be using is an orange yellow mixed from lemon yellow and Windsor orange. Then I'll be intensifying this in some areas, using just wins orange and I'll be adding in a few shadows with cerulean blue thistles. One of those colors I had to Google translate the name off to check that I was saying it right. I'm fairly sure that I'm still saying it wrong. Half of the time. In the mid ground, I'll be using two colors. These are the same orangy yellow as my background, mixed from lemon yellow and winds orange on, then winds orange in the foreground. I'll be using lemon yellow and winds orange again to mix up a darker, more intense version off my orange yellow. I'll also be using burned number the first time quite watered down, the second time more opaque. And here we have the finished color chart. I recommend you make your own version of this to help keep track of the colors were using during the class. 4. Wet-on-Wet Technique: Now we're going to have a quick tutorial on how to do the wet on wet technique before we start on the main piece. If you've completed a lot of my other classes, then you'll be very familiar with this technique. So feel free to skip ahead to the next lesson or stay with us if you want a quick refresher to use the wet on wet technique basically means to apply wet paint onto wet paper. All you have to do is saturate your paper with water like this. Give it a moment to let the water sink in, Then apply your paint on what as it leads outwards. It may take more than one layer of water to thoroughly soak your paper. This will depend on how thick your paper is. I'm using 300 GSM paper. Can you see how easily the painters diffusing and bleeding outwards? You could also drag your brush across the paper to paint streaks on watches. Those bleed outwards or you could adopt your brush onto the paper. You can also use the wet on wet technique to blend one or more colors together like this. If you are unfamiliar with this technique, then I recommend that you practice with it a bit before jumping into the main tutorial 5. Background: Now we're ready to start on the final piece, and we're going to start this by painting the background. First, cover your paper with water to prepare it for the wet on wet technique. I'm using my big square brush for this. Give it a moment to let the water sink into the paper and apply another layer if required. The thick in your paper, the more water you'll need to use to circuit When the paper is prepped, I'm going in with my orange yellow color and painting a light wash of this, covering the whole paper using my smaller square brush. Then I'm using a tissue to remove the paint from the areas where I want the sun and like to shine through. Make sure to move quickly here because the paint has to be wet for it to be able to be picked up by the tissue. Now I'm going back in with my yellow and painting in streaks of sun rays from the edge of my painting, moving in towards the center. Next, I'm intensifying the color off some of the rays by going over them with winds orange. Make sure that the rays are most intense at the edge of the painting and fade toe white as they approach the sun in the center, finally finishing off the background by using my blue toe, adding a few shadows in between the sun rays. Now leave your work to dry before moving on to the next lesson. 6. Midground: Now we're starting on the mid ground. We're going to use the wet on wet technique to paint the mid ground. So the first step is to re wet your paper and then give the water a moment to sink in. Then I'm mixing up my orange yellow and using the thin edge off my square brush to start painting in the trees. The trees in the center of the paper should have gaps in them where they meet the sun, because anything directly in front of the sun will be white, it out by the light a bit like how you get lens flare in photos. Three trees in yellow are closest to the sun. The wet on wet technique is going to blur the edges off the trees outwards, making them look further away as they fade into the distance. I'm going to paint the trees closer to us in orange, - while the paper is still wet, I'm going to turn my brush sideways and use it to paint in some leaves by dotting the brush over the paper. The's don't have to be exact. The aim here is to capture the general impression of leaves. We'll add more detail. When we get to the foreground, you can also go back to your yellow on adding a few leaves with this as well. Once you're happy, leave your work to dry before starting on the next lesson. 7. Foreground: Now we're going to paint the full ground. First. I'm watering down my brown and using the edge of my square brush to paint in the trees in the foreground. I'm keeping the paint quite light because the painting is very light as a whole, so I want to make sure it stays balanced. - Next , I'm using the brown again and appointed brushed this time to dot in some leaves around the edges of the painting toe. Add in some detail. - Now I'm mixing up on orange yellow to dot in some lighter leaves as well. This will help to create the illusion off light and shadows. - Finally , I'm using a more opaque version of my brown to paint in the two trees, right at the front of the painting toe. Add depth. Once you're happy with your painting, leave your work to dry 8. Class Project: Hey, raised the finished piece, up-close feel class project. Try creating your own watercolor forest by following along with my instructions. Don't forget to 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 your work in my stories. Do leave a review as it helps me out a lot. And if anything, you want me to do a class on, let me know. You can find more of my work on Instagram at E dot dot curtis, And on my website, WW dot Emily hyphen I hope you enjoyed this class and I'll see you in the next one.