Create a Watercolor Galaxy Moon with Star Sign Constellation: a step-by-step tutorial | Madi Smit-Kliffen Madiliefje | Skillshare

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Create a Watercolor Galaxy Moon with Star Sign Constellation: a step-by-step tutorial

teacher avatar Madi Smit-Kliffen Madiliefje, "Creativity is contagious. Pass it on."

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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 (1h 6m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Materials

    • 3. Colors

    • 4. Outlining and painting the Galaxy Moon

    • 5. Outlining and inking the lettering

    • 6. Painting the second layer of the Galaxy Moon

    • 7. Adding the constellation

    • 8. Final thoughts

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About This Class


Welcome to my very first Skillshare class! We will be making a poster with a watercolor galaxy moon and star sign constellation. We will add some lettering to personalize it to your taste. It’s a great gift for a newborn, a birthday, mothers/fathers day or for yourself!

For the class project, make a poster with a constellation of your choice. Then add either the star sign name or the name of the person you’re gifting it to and perhaps some fun characteristics or a date. The possibilities are endless!

It’s a step-by-step tutorial, the painting is filmed in real-time, so you can paint along with me! I've sped up some of the inking parts, but I've kept the outlining/sketching process so you can see everything that I do. No prior knowledge required, though if you have some experience with watercolor, it will be useful. I can’t wait to see your beautiful project!

x Madi

Meet Your Teacher

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Madi Smit-Kliffen Madiliefje

"Creativity is contagious. Pass it on."


Hi there my fellow art lovers! :-)

My name is Madi and I'm a watercolor artist based in the Netherlands. I fell in love with watercolor about 2 years ago and it has brought me so much joy since! Skillshare has taught me so much (and still does!), I've met
amazing people and teachers on here and that's one of the reason why I started teaching. I wanted other creative enthousiasts to have the same experiences that I had. I started teaching in May 2019 and will continue to upload classes as I go!

Behind the scenes I'm currently working on a webshop and I would love to teach some workshops in real life as well :-)

I hope you enjoy my classes! Feel free to contact me if you have any questions via instagram (@madiliefje) or e-mail ([email protected]) ;-)See full profile

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1. Introduction: Hi. Welcome to my very first skill share class. I'm Matty Political are artists based on benevolence. Thank you so much for joining me. I'm very excited to plead with you today. We will be making this watercolor Galaxy Moon poster and we'll add a star sign, consolation or lettering of your choice. It's a great personalized gift for yourself or anyone else. I hope you're excited to get started. I know I am. So let's dive right in. 2. Materials: these aren't and materials were going to be using today. Watercolor paper. I'm using Tencent Excel. What a color paper. You can use any watercolor paper you have, but I do recommend you use one that is 300 grams or higher. We will be using a lot of water to make the galaxy mean and the paper going get easily worked. I'm using an 84 for men, which is my personal preference. If you like working on a bigger piece of paper or a smaller, that's also possible. I have two containers of water, one will be clear water and the other one is or I'll clean my brushes paper towel to dry my brush. If I need to pick up some access water from the Galaxy moon, I'm using that pain palace. It's not necessary to use one, but I like it, too, being to mix my colors and to add some water to the paint. Um, asking or painter's tape. I'm using this one. This is a sensitive one. Um, I use it to tape down my paper. I tape it down to the table I'm working on. The downsides of that is that you can turn your paper while you're working on it. If you do like to do that, then I recommend you use wooden board of some sort, which has a flat surface so that you can. It is a pure paper to that. If you haven't used state before, be sure to try out a little piece on scrap paper or in the corner so that you're sure it doesn't terrier paper when you take it off. Watercolor brushes. I like to use the DaVinci cause mental mix. You can use any watercolor brushes you have, but I suggest one with around Tip. I like to use this one in the size 14 with a big round tip to the moon. And then I like to use this size six to fill in the color. It has a nice tip, and so the rim of the moon will stay precise. I will use a pencil to outline the the Galaxy moon and the letter. This is a to H an eraser, and I have some secure of my confined liners. The's of waterproof ink, Uh, which means you can use watercolor over the ink, which we will not be doing today. So it's OK if you don't have waterproof fine liners. I like to use this 0051 for the consolation, and then I like to use 101 and 03 to add the lettering. I have some Van Gogh paints. I will be using the names of the this pain said, which may differ from yours. That's OK, you can see on my paid, but which color I'm using. You can look for someone something similar in your paint palette. I also have optional metallic watercolors. If you want to add some gold in your consolation instead of ink, for example, and you can use that. But it's not necessary. Eso these are the materials will be using today. Next, I will show you the colors we will be using for our galaxy. 3. Colors: I like to use just two or three colors. When I'm painting my Galaxies, we will be spending a blue galaxy. Um, so be using a few blue colors. My old start with KRouge in blue. It's a nice, dark, cold blue, but just kind of like the base color for this galaxy. And then I can either at more big Mond and make it a little darker or at more water and make it a little lighter. I like to use it when the paper is still regrets in the middle, and I like to mix it with some pains. Great to make it a little darker. And that makes it perfect for the edges of the room, which I like to be a little darker, like the actress to be dark. And then in the middle you have some more color variations. Also here you can add more or less big hman, and then I like to use I color. That kind of makes it pop. I'm using civilian blue. It's gold in my set. It's kind of Ah, like turquoise. It's really bright. It gives a really nice effect. As you can see, when the Persian Blue When it dries up, it gets a little less vibrant and the Turk was stays really vibrant, so that gives a nice contrast. El Sissi. I had a little more pigment did occlusion that it can get with deep, darker color as well. She doesn't worry what will be going towards the edges of the galaxy, and then, if you want, you could use a yellow I'm using like yellow, which, if mixed with the blue red paint, is really nice greenish effect, and that looks really good, and that's all the colors will be using today. 4. Outlining and painting the Galaxy Moon: all right, so now that we know what materials we need and what colors will be using today, let's get started on outlining and painting the galaxy. I've taped down my paper to the table. As you can see with some masking or painter's tape, make sure the tape is securely fastened. Whether you're putting it on a table or wooden board of some sort, I've put it about just a few millimeters inside of the paper. Be sure that's a pit at least kind of straight, because these will be the new edges of your paper on with the spacing of the moon and the lettering and everything that's going into your painting, it's good to know that these edges are are also kind of ST all right, I will be using this glass bowl for the galaxy. One. I'll just turn it upside down on my paper. This is about 12 centimeters in diameter, which is about 4.7 inches, because will also be adding some lettering later on. I like to put the galaxy moon and like the top 2/3 of the paper, so I have some space for the lettering here. That looks nice if it's the focal point in the top 2/3. Now, what I like to do is I like to stand up for this part, so they have a better view of the spacing and just see if you can put it in the middle of that top 2/3 part. I like to put it a little bit higher, then in the middle and just see if there's equal space left and right. You can do it by feel or you can. You can use something to measure it out. I think this is good. I'll just be true thing the bull. No, I'm making my pencil lines pretty dark so that they're visible on the video. But in your painting, make sure they're a little lighter. That's can we go? So this is our galaxy, so I'll be taking my big grown brush and I'll be putting it in the water. Mental started by winning the moon. Take your time for this. The pain goes wherever the water iss, so if you're really precise with your water, then the paint will be right at the edge. Isas well, be sure you don't take too much water all at once cause you don't want to get any puddles anywhere and just try to divided even me. Usually when I waited at first, a part of it is already dry before I'm done wedding the whole moon. But that's okay. You can just take some more water. Unwed it again really easily. I just like to take my time for this because it's it's important that does it, that this part goes well. You don't want to be putting too much water on it. You won't like a nice sheen on it, which will be able to see if you get it a little from the side. Or if you have some some light shining on it, you'll be able to see where it needs a little more water forward. I might be a little puddle. It's okay if there's a little puddle, There probably will be because the paper isn't always used to the Simona water. But we can pick that up with a dry brush away. I'll show you later on. So now I'm just going over it again and making sure that the whole muteness it's wet and hasn't ashamed to it. But I don't. I'm here and the edges. That's old, good and wet. That's so even the distributed. Okay, so then I will be switching to my smaller brush. They'll be taking some prision boob war. I'll just start adding it in. As you can see, give these really nice blooms. We'll do a little more where it's wet and a little less. If it's not just like Teoh, just make some lines. Just go at the edges here, or I want to make it a little darker, so it's not dark now yet, but that's OK. It will get darker if we do. Another layer offered for take a little more pigment. I like to make the darkest at just mostly, opposing to each other a little so that not the entire edge his dark, but they're still some color variation. I'll be taking some more KRouge in blue, and we'll be adding in a little pain scree to make it a little darker, a little more blue in that many will be adding that so the pieces that I want a little darker and as you can see my paper, has already dried up a little. That's okay. We'll just add a little more water when I'm done with this color. If your papers still wet, it's very good. You can just go on and add somewhere pained. A little more Doric spots in between here is well, so now I'm just gonna use some clear water. I'm gonna blanket in a little more, see what it does when I go over it with the water Kind of blends into each other. That's what I like to have some clear water on hand. So I kind of always use that. Teoh added, No. These are very kind of muted colors, a little dry, even a little lighter. So I like to use the vibrant color that I talked about. This really in blue, Just kind of Ah, I really like turquoise. We'll just add that in. Just put some strokes here and there. I like to go around the edges a little, have some light there, and if you think doesn't look good, it's perfectly normal. I think that all the time, but it turns out good. You'll see. Just stick with it. Just keep adding some paint wherever you feel a kid, if you like it a little lighter than you can keep it light. If you like it a little darker, you can make it even darker. Just keep in mind that we'll be adding the consolation to it. So you do have to have a little bit of light, at least in the middle. And what I also like to do as I like to take some clear water on my brush and just tap ID like you're making pain splitters. As you can see, that gives really nice blooms. I think it's kind of galaxy esque. If it's too much, you can just over go over it again with some paint. I'm gonna take some more prision blue, because I want those ad just to be even darker. - How if you have a puddle somewhere where painters this pooling or you're thinking that's too dark over there? I want that to be a little lighter than just take your paper, tell and just clean your brush. Do you take a little water and you adapted on your paper towel so it's still lightly moist , but not a lot. And then you can just you can pick up paint wherever you want. Just skip cleaning it and wedding it again a little right . I have also talked about adding some yellow in there to make a nice screen. We'll take just a little bit of yellow. Be sure to do this one that when the paint is wet so that it blends into each other. So I just make a couple of streaks. No, no, take another wet brush and I kind of I kind of blended in there. I like it more when it's not so pronounced that there is a color changing it, but a little bit is nice. So as you can see, the middle is still pretty light. And then I just dry up a little lighter, a swell, so I'm probably gonna be adding another layer, but I'm gonna be adding just some civilian of to these edges in between the dark. I want those to be a little lighter. Then I'm gonna let this dry and will start outlining the lettering and then we'll come back to the galaxy one again 5. Outlining and inking the lettering : So while the Galaxy moon is drying, let's start on outlining the lottery. What I like to do is I like to put the name of the star side of which were making their consolation over here. And then I like to look up some characteristics of that star sign. If you look on Google or Pinterest, there are little things that describe a certain star sign. And then I like to add those on the lower bottom of the paper. I usually Big three, cause I think it's a nice even spread. So right now I'm gonna go for a Gemini. I've made a similar poster for my knees that was born a couple of weeks ago, and I want to make one for my nephew, whose birthday is coming up and he's a Gemini. Also, it's a very fun consolation with a lot of stars, so I'll be lettering Gemini in here. But you could also let her the name of the person you're gifting into or or your own name. If you're making for yourself and then if you want to do the characteristics, you can do that, or you could add the date off the star sign or the date of the person whose birthday it is or if it's for a new born the day they were born. But there's also their birthday, but there are a lot of variations and just choose what feels right for you. So know what I like to do as I like to take a sketchbook of some sort for a piece of paper . Whatever you have on hand on, I'd like to try out some different styles of lettering before I settle on what I want to add. So I'm gonna be showing you this with a fine liner so that you'll be able to see it well in the video. But I suggest you sketch it with pencil. Of course, there's a style that that I personally like a lot, but which I used on a lot of my paintings, which is kind of, Ah, a fluid style which stretches out the word. Of course, this would be too small to put in here, but you could make it bigger or smaller, depending on how much space you have. You can also go for a more classic style, for example, something like this. And then you could if you want to ad some four lettering, I'm not coloring until very well, but I think you got the idea. There are little styles to find on the Internet. So just see which one you like, which one you feel comfortable in making these air kind of more, more classic styles. Maybe you could also do. This is more curse If you could also do it more so on Sarif kind of phoned and you can make the letters either Really big are really small. I like the pitch stripes really low, which gives a nice offend more something like this, which you could also then add stripes and color it into giving more depth. If that's the kind of thing you like, You could also to some fun things with the G, for example, like this. Then put that Jim and I part from there. Or you could just find a really nice capital G that you like. There are lots of friends different ways. Then you consider this I personally like this one. So I'm just gonna stick with my own style and use that, But feel free to use any type you like makers as fancy or flourished as you like. What I like to do, though, for the characteristics that I'm gonna put under here. I like to use a more cursive style for a two star sign name or the name over the person you're gifting it to. And then if I add some characteristics, I like to use more a son, Shareef kind of style so that there's a little contrast between the two, which I personally like, maybe you want to make it old cursive. That's fine as well. So I'm going to be going back. So my painting and now if you want if you if you need you can make these lines and be sure to put it within those lines. I like to make it a little more loose and just see it's kind of wear end up. So I'm just gonna use the first style that I showed you. This is a style just good. If you kind of keep it flowing, I don't think about it too much. Says you can see it's a little small and I spaced it too much to the left, so I'm gonna be erasing this and then I'm gonna try again and just try and erase as much as you like until you're satisfied with the result. So I'm much more happy with this spacing where there would still on the small side. So what I'm gonna do, cause I'm gonna gonna keep these letters and just make ID just make them a lot bigger, and then the spacing gets better as well. I'll raise my other lions because it's kind of confusing. So now, as you can see, the g m that year are pretty big. And then I go a little smaller, which is what I tend to do also go a little up. So I'm gonna be I wouldn't have There's a little smaller on this, A little bigger even. And that's OK. You know, Just take a Zeman egos as you need, and just keep playing with it until you're satisfied, cause once it's ST, there's no going back. Still, pencil lines. I couldn't erase them. I will be ready. Sing all the lines I don't need. Once I fainted once the Incas dry, it's very easy to raise everything and you won't see a thing of would you tried out. It was like girls up there though. So take that out a little bitty and there's no right or wrong When it comes to lettering, it's just your personal preference. It's what you're comfortable with. Its what you like, Um, with the style of the watercolor moon. You know, if it's for a boy or for a guy, then maybe you more more straightforward style is, is would you like? And it's for a girl and maybe you want to flourish it a little more, but some nice girl he touches on it. I do like to make, like, these endings and beginnings kind of similar so that there is a nice flow to it. No, I'm kind of kind of happy with this one. So I'm going to be putting some lines over here for the characteristics. Now you can do this. Either FREEHAND or you could use a ruler. I like to just do them freehand. Don't forget that it's handmade. So not everything has to be perfect. But if you want to use a ruler, that's perfectly fine. I'm trying to draw these lines a straight as I can, which sometimes is a very street. Okay, and then I'm going to be putting the character of six in here. So it just three. It's inquisitive, strong and imaginative, so I'll be putting strong in the middle cause it's, ah, a shorter word. I think it'll look good with inquisitive and imaginative next to it. So I'm gonna be drawing a line. I'm not gonna make it visible here yet, but through the middle of the page. So I know about where the middle lists. So then strong should be in between here somewhere. So I like to use the more salsa reef style for this. It's okay if this takes a few tries to get right. It's a little bit lettering that needs to be done in, uh and it's tiny space. And to be able to fiddle in is the is not an easy task. So I think strongest about in the middle Now, I like to use these, well, stripes, too, to split the words. So then imaginative is gonna go here like this, and then inquisitive is gonna go on the other side. I'm just going to start with the e here because this is where I would like it to end. It's easier to think about the spacing I sometimes do a word backcourts as well. If you don't know how much base you're gonna need, you can just go backwards. I'll show you. - So there you have inquisitive. I think these are about straight. And you could always adjust when you're going over them with a finer. Of course, this is just the sketch. We'll be racing his pencil lines once we've linked commission. Be sure that there is about the same size to each side that's left and that the word strong in this case is about in the middle and that the letters are of the same heights on with Okay, I'm pretty happy with that. So I hope that you've also have your star sign Name on there. Either the characteristics or a date. For example, My nephews Birthday Tous June 7th. It could put that like in here as well. If I wanted to, I could do just the numbers. For example, I could write it out, could see June 7th, Or you could do the date, which belongs to Germany's star sign. There's all sorts options that you could add Whatever is your personal preference. I like it like this. So I'm gonna leave it like this and then will be thinking the outlines later. I'm gonna take my my consigned liner, the 031 I like to use this for the star signing and just go over. You're a pencil sketch with your fine Niner. Of course, With the fine line out, it's gonna be a little smaller than what we sketched with the pencil. So if you want, you could always add had some more with to the letters, make them a little darker. And then I like to use my my chrome 01 find minor, which is a little smaller than the three for the characteristics because I like it. If it's not all the same, the same size and fine liners. I like that. This is the focal point, which can be a little a little darker, little thicker lines. And then these are a little smaller on a little thinner lines. So I'm just gonna go over. This is well again. Be sure to take your time. If you make a tiny mistake, don't sweat it. Most of the time. No one else would you season. - My son was going to come out to play. There we go 6. Painting the second layer of the Galaxy Moon: So as you can maybe see by the tape here, my papers warp a little bit on the tape has come loose. That's because I only put it a few millimeters inside of the paper because of the lettering on the spacey. But now that the lettering is done, I'm gonna be replacing my tape and I'm gonna be putting it a little more inside, so it holds it down a little better. Now we will be painting the second layer of the galaxy more. I really like how it dried up. It always dress up differently than you think. So when it's weapon, you do you think it doesn't look right? Just wait until it's dry, cause the pain just does amazing things. I do want it to be a little more darker around the edges and I want a little more darkness also in the middle of a little more color variation. So I'm gonna take my smaller brush. I'm gonna take my my Persian blue, The Dark Blue Highness almost completely gone. As you can see, I really like this color. I use it a lot, so have to go back and forth a lot, too to get some paint out of it. But I'm happy with this, so I'll just go over The edge is here again. Make them dark. So I'm not wetting the paper first. Just doing this drowned Dre or read, um, dry. True with the proper name is some adding the wet paint to the dry paper. And then I can first layer. I will be adding water to blended in with the moon. Right? So now you can eat her and take some Clearwater or mix a little water with the paint. He's longer than like that. I like to blend it out over the whole moon, though, because other ways you get some weird for its stripes in your painting where where the water dried from the layer, you added, and I'm just putting some water on it, and I'm reactivating the paint again that's already dried. It's really easily done. We can just go bag and add or change things that you don't like. How they came out. I've gone over the line a little bit here, so I'm gonna take some clear water. I'm gonna go over it very lightly, and I'm gonna take my paper towel and see if I can get some of that Some of that color out of there. Make sure brushes clean. So I would like to have clear water on hand. You'll just be making it even more likely. So now I like this a little better. It will just be adding so more dark blue where I feel like it needs a little more dark do a little more lighter colors were needs a little more later colors, and it was gonna be sending them in. I want this to be a little well, the bigger. For example, it was a pretty small edge there telling Reared, this is just however, you like your galaxy to look. Maybe the first layer dried up really well. And you think, Matt, I'm really happy with this. I don't wanna had something else to it. That's perfectly fine. You can just skip this step on, go straight onto the consolation which will be doing next. - Are you having a little dark? Do consider Middle is well, No, I like to take a little. It's really in blue. I have to fill that in between here so you can see the moon is wet again now so blends into each other real easily in here in the tub pigment. As you can see, as hard as I have tried to keep it perfectly round, give it nice street edges. It's always possible the pain does what it wants, and sometimes you just have to let it. - So I'm gonna be adding a little paint splatter. I get it with the first layer. If you split or some onto your paper, just take your paper tell and just that the splitters away. Or, if you like, some paint splatter, you could take some water in your brush some pain and just do the same. But you can go around the painting a little bit. You can do it topside or on the bottom. Whatever you like gives a very, very fun effect. I'm gonna be taking just a little bit of paint away from here like the affected gifts. You have to do this if you don't want because a very kind of, um, unfinished look service e like it's not all perfectly painted, which I think benefits of a galaxy even more so, just like to pick up a little pain here and there. Usually when it dries up gives a nice, nice texture that you couldn't get any other way. So I'm happy with this. I'm gonna stop here. If you want to continue working on your galaxy, that's fine. Just don't try to overwork it. Well, let this Lear dry, and then the next step will be adding the consolation. 7. Adding the constellation: So now that the second layer of the galaxy moon has dried completely, we can add the final details. The consolation. Go ahead and look up your conservation on the Internet. I've looked up the consolation for Germany, and it's this one. As you can see, it has a lot of stars, which is what I like about this consolation. Now, when you look up your consultation, you will see that there are some bigger stars in some smaller stores. And what I like to do is I like to make circles instead of stars. And then, I mean the bigger stars. I represent them with some bigger circles and smaller stories with some smaller circles. Of course, you can new circles or stars, whichever you prefer. And then I like to draw some straight lines in between the circles or stars. I'm not lying that them touch each other, but I'm really putting them just in between them, and I'm using straight lines. But you could also, for example, used daughter lines. If you like that, I'm doing this in ink. You could also use metallic watercolors like the ones I showed you in the material section , so I'm going to keep this year as a reference. I'm gonna be putting this into the moon, and I like it once a little turned like this. It's too big right now, so I'm gonna have to scale it down a little to fit into the galaxy Moon. I'm going to start at the top here and just work my way down and you can see when you look up the consultation on the Internet. Just look at how the stars are in relation to each other like I started with this star, for example, and this star is slightly above it. And then there's this one, which is underneath this star, and then that one is like in a straight line from here. And this one is in a straight line from there, and so you can go down. No, these are almost in a straight line. If you look at the stars in that way, then it's easier to to make the consolation. I'm going to use a pencil for this. If you make a mistake, that's fine. If you use a pencil over water color, you can erase it. You can't do too many times, of course, because it will leave a slightly lighter mark, but in the galaxy isn't so bad, but just tried a the map it out. - So this consolation is pretty filling for the moon. If you have a different consolation, you'll have fewer stars. Then just see, were your consolation will fit nicely into that. I'm happy with this place, Hman. So I'm gonna be taking my my confined liner gonna be using the 01 for this for the stars. I need my reference because I need to know which there's are big and which was smaller. And then I'm just going to make the circles. I like to start small and then makes, um, a little bigger so that I can always adjust. That makes him to make. So I first duel the stores and then it'll add the straight lines with an even smaller fine liner. - All right, so now I have a little the stars in there. I'm gonna take my micron fine liner, my 005 and I will be adding the straight lines away just a little bit for the ink to dry, or I will go over it with my hand and it'll switch the page, which would be a shame. I think there will pretty dry now. So be adding in the lines. - If you want, you could already remove the painter. Stay for this and you can turn your paper. It would make it easier to draw the lines. - There we go. And that's Digimon Eyes star. Sign in there. Let's go ahead and remove the painter's tape. Are you sure to do this slowly so you don't tear your paper? Yeah, and there you have it. Your own personal watercolor Galaxy Constellation poster. 8. Final thoughts: Thank you so much for taking my skill share class. I hope you had a lot of fun painting along with me. I can't wait to see your beautiful project. So be sure to upload it to the Project gallery. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me. And if you show you work on Instagram, please tag me so that I can see like and comment on your work until next time.