Explore Color Mixing and Color Harmony: Paint Watercolor Crystals! | Imelda Green | Skillshare

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Explore Color Mixing and Color Harmony: Paint Watercolor Crystals!

teacher avatar Imelda Green, Illustrator / Graphic designer

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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

14 Lessons (1h 2m)
    • 1. Hello & Welcome

    • 2. Your Project

    • 3. Gather Your Materials!

    • 4. The 2 Ways Of Mixing Color

    • 5. The 4 Properties Of Color

    • 6. Color Wheels And Why They Matter

    • 7. Color Properties: HUE

    • 8. Color Properties: VALUE

    • 9. Color Properties: TEMPERATURE

    • 10. Color Properties: BRIGHTNESS

    • 11. The Jolly Joker Color

    • 12. Pick The Right Colors: Color Harmonies

    • 13. Find Color Inspiration Online

    • 14. BONUS: Painting Process Of All Crystals

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About This Class

Color mixing in watercolor is tricky, and it can take years of practice and experiments to get everything right. My class is here to give you a little bit of a shortcut.

We will start the class by learning about basic rules of color theory and different color models, such as traditional, CMY and RGB models and how they are used. Then we will learn about the 4 different properties of color (hue, value, temperature and brightness), by painting watercolor crystals!

In the last part of the class I'll tell you how you can pick colors for your paintings - both in theory and in practice.

You will learn all of this in a fun way, through painting 15 watercolor crystals in your very own colours.

This class is great for beginners as well as intermediate students of watercolor. No experience is required but being familiar with watercolors - particularly controlling water - will make the class easier to complete.


  • 2 sheets of A4 size (or similar) heavy-weight watercolor paper (300gsm or higher is best)
  • a round, pointed watercolor brush (size 10 or similar)
  • watercolor paint
  • a jar of water
  • a paper towel to control wetness in your brush
  • a palette to mix colors in
  • a pencil and an eraser (only needed if you don't print the template)
  • a black pen, which does not dissolve in water (only needed if you don't print the template)
  • a hairdryer (not essential)
  • a printed version of the template that I attached to the course (not essential) 


I hope you can join me in this creative journey — see you in class!



Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Imelda Green

Illustrator / Graphic designer


Imelda is an illustrator specializing in watercolor, based in Budapest, Hungary. She's been working as a full-time freelance illustrator since 2018. Since then, she illustrated children's books, planners, and many other projects, but it has become her artistic phylosophy to consider the process of painting far more important than the actual result.

This is how she started teaching in-person watercolor workshops, which she is now also transferring to an online experience, so she can share the joys of painting with as many people as possible.

She also runs a blog all about watercolor and illustration, where she helps creatives get rid of the pressures society places on the word 'talent'.

Imelda enjoys painting botanicals, food and many other subjects, while she also f... See full profile

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1. Hello & Welcome: Have you ever struggled mixing the exact same colors you have imagined, or have you worked hard on your watercolor painting only to realize that your colors look awful together on the final piece? Well, this class is here to help you. My name is Imelda and I'm a watercolor illustrator. You might know me from my previous class where we explored negative painting in watercolor. I have loved experimenting with color since early childhood, but only recently did I understand why certain colors work together while others don't. Knowing how colors work has enabled me not only to have total control over my watercolors, but also to evoke certain feelings into viewer and ultimately create realistic illustrations. Learning about color can be heavy on theory, but it can also be fun and creative. In this class, I chose the latter. We'll be painting a bunch of beautiful crystals in watercolor while I guide you through the basic rules of color. After a quick understanding of different color models, I'll teach you how to control values, brightness, and color temperature in watercolor. Then we'll cover how to pick harmonious colors and find inspiration online for your future paintings. By the end of the class, you'll have nine beautiful watercolor crystals painted in your very own colors and you'll be confident to start working on your own pieces. Mixing colors can be a struggle, especially if you are not experienced in watercolor. If you have time, you can spend years experimenting and you'll learn it all, or you can shorten this process by understanding how pigments work together. This class will help you in a fun way, even if you are at the beginning stages of your watercolor journey. To complete this class, it is helpful to have a basic knowledge in watercolor because we will not cover how to control water on the page or in your brush. However, you will definitely learn a lot even if you're a complete beginner. So let's start and paint some crystals. 2. Your Project: During this class, we'll gradually build up your color knowledge. To help you on this journey, I am asking you to join me in the painting process. By the end of the class, you will have two pages of beautiful crystals. I would be delighted if you shared your work as well as your painting experience and how you felt during the class. All you need to do is upload them into student project section, which you can find under the video in the Projects & Resources section on the right-hand side. If you have any questions, feel free to ask them and I will respond as quickly as possible. I have created a pencil drawing of the crystals beforehand and turned it into a template that you can use. You can also find this in the Projects & Resources section on the right-hand side. You can print them directly on watercolor paper or transfer them onto the page with the help of Light Box, iPad, or Window, or just draw them onto the page by hand. Now, let me explain a little bit about the materials we will use. 3. Gather Your Materials!: We will practice color mixing in watercolor specifically, so our supplies will include watercolor paint. For this class, I will use Koh-I-Noor's [inaudible] watercolors, which is my favorite brand because the colors are super bright in white print. We will use two sheets of A4 or similar size watercolor paper. We'll be learning about the four different properties of color on the first one, and practice color harmonies on the second. I'm using Fabriano's 300-gram cold press watercolor paper. Some scrap paper where you can experiment with what you have mixed, a size eight synthetic watercolor brush or similar, a plate to mix colors in. I am using a plastic one here, but a simple kitchen plate is perfect for this, Some water, a paper towel, a hair dryer if you want to speed up the drying process but this is not essential. Unless you print the templates directly onto watercolor paper, you will need a pencil for sketching, and an eraser to remove these sketches when the paintings are done. You can also use a black pen to outline the crystals if you like, but make sure that you use one where the ink does not dissolve in water. I have created a PDF in the class resources section where I listed all the materials that I personally use. Now you don't need these exact same brands to complete the class, but to reach similar results, make sure that you use watercolor paper, watercolor paints, and a watercolor brush. These materials react differently to excess water than other types of art supplies. Using watercolor paper will make sure that the paper doesn't soak up the water immediately, so you have time to work with effects and mix colors right on the page. As for brushes, a watercolor brush is much softer than other brushes and it is designed to hold the maximum amount of water, and this is why I'm using it today. It is important to note that while the rules of color theory will apply to any brand or even different techniques, your results will vary depending on the brand and the actual colors that you have. So if you have all the applies, let's see how you can mix colors. 4. The 2 Ways Of Mixing Color: When it comes to color mixing, you have two choices, you can either mix on a pallet or write on the page. We will try both of these in the next few lessons. When it comes to watercolor, mixing on the palette is the safer route to go, especially if you are not an experienced color mixer. As watercolor is a transparent paint, you cannot remove the mistake spite painting a layer on top of the unwanted area. Basically, once your brush reaches the page, the blot will remain there. Therefore, it is wise to mix colors on the palette, so you know what exactly you transfer onto your piece before actually painting. When it comes to choosing your palette, you can pick almost anything. The only two things you should pay attention to is that the surface should be wide, so know undertone will distort your perception of color. It should not soak up water; otherwise, you'll wasting a lot of paint. I used to mix colors on paper because it was the best way for me to actually see what color I have created, but a lot of paint was wasted. If you have difficulty seeing what color you have mixed, you can just keep some scrap paper near you, and check before applying it to your piece. The other advantage to mixing on a palette that does not soak up water is that you can reactivate dried watercolor paint by adding water. This will save you even more paint, and you can actually reuse colors that you have previously mixed and liked. I personally use a regular kitchen plate to mix in, but you can use the plastic or metal top of your watercolor box, some leftover tiles, or plastic plates as well. When it comes to watercolor, you can mix colors on the page. For this, you will use the so-called wet-on-wet technique. This means, you paint over your surface in plain water, then while the surface is still wet, you add the lighter color first and darker second. You can mix these two into a uniform third color or leave watercolor to do its work, and create a flowing texture. You can also do this by painting the lighter color first on dry paper, and while that is still wet, you can gradually add the darker one. Now that you know how you can mix colors, let's see which colors exactly you should mix. 5. The 4 Properties Of Color: How can we describe a certain color? Well, colors have four properties that will more or less define what we see. I say more or less because every individual sees color differently and no theory will ever describe your experience perfectly. However, this model describes color pretty well. To show you, I'll pick this painting of a crystal and try to define its colors. The first property is hue. Hue basically answers the question, what color is this? On this crystal, the answer is obviously blue. The second property of colors is value, which tells you how light or dark a color is. We often use different values in shading. On this image, this area is definitely light while there are dark areas here and there because they are in the shadow. The third property is temperature. Color temperature is a fairly subjective matter because every individual sees color differently. What most people agree on though, is that yellow, orange, and red are considered warm colors, while green, blue, and purple are cool colors. We will dive deeper into color temperature in a later lesson. However, on this picture, we have both colder shade of blue that is closer to the cold color of green, and a warmer shade of blue which is closer to red. The fourth property of color is brightness. This property defines how vibrant or dull a color is, namely how close it is to gray. This area here is certainly dialect gray or blue than others, where the color is much brighter and more vibrant. This is how you can describe an existing color. But how do you actually create them? To help you make colors, let me introduce you to the color wheel. 6. Color Wheels And Why They Matter: You cannot really talk about color mixing without mentioning color wheels and color models. Even though color wheels seem to approach color in a thoroughly theoretic way, it can actually give you a lot of practical help. Out of the four properties of color mentioned in the previous lesson, a color wheel describes three pretty accurately; hue, temperature, and brightness. When it comes to color wheels, there are three different models worth talking about. The first one is the traditional color wheel, which defines three primary colors; yellow, red, and blue. The secondary colors, so orange, green, and purple, are made by mixing two primaries, while tertiary colors are created with mixing one of the primary colors and one secondary color. However, when it comes to practice, this model has its flaws. When I say blue, for example, each and every one of you imagine a different shade of blue, which matters a lot when it comes to mixing bright, beautiful colors instead of mud. Today we will be using a more refined version of the traditional color wheel called the split primary palette. This means that we will split the primary yellows, reds, and blues into warm and cool versions, which will create the most vibrant colors possible. Let's see what this means. A cool yellow will be closer to green. A good example of this is the pigment cadmium yellow, which has green undertones. A warm yellow is closer to orange, one example is a paint called Indian yellow. A cool red has a pinkish glow, cadmium red would be a good pigment choice for your cool red. Warm red is again closer to orange. Cadmium Scarlet, for instance, is a warm red pigment. Finally, a cool blue is closer to green, for which I would use the Prussian blue pigment, while a warm blue is near to purple, French ultramarine is a nice warm blue pigment. In my actual palette that I'm using, I have the warm and cool versions of yellows and blues, but I only have one warm red. I used to create cool red by mixing warm red and a tiny bit of purple, but recently I completed my palette with a tube of cool red from another brand. You'll notice that the cool version of these primaries stands pretty close to a column model used in printing even though they are not the same thing, and this is the CMY color model. This color model is most often associated with printing, even though it is also used in painting. C refers to cyan, m to magenta, and y to yellow, which are the primary colors of this model, while the secondaries are red, blue, and green. You can use this model in painting very well instead of the traditional one and you'll end up with brighter results, even though, in my experience, the split primary model will probably give you brighter oranges. Both the traditional and the CMY column model are based on light being reflected and absorbed by different pigments. The third way to describe color is RGB. Strictly speaking, that is not relevant to painting because the RGB model describes light itself instead of material things that reflect light like inks and paints. The RGB model describes red, green, and blue as primaries and cyan, magenta and yellow as secondaries. When mixed together, they create so-called white light that comes directly from the sun. You may have met the RGB model on your TV or computer screens. In the next lessons, we'll be grabbing our paint brushes and explore the full properties of color deeper in practice with the help of the split primary color wheel. 7. Color Properties: HUE: This lesson will be our first time to reach for our paint brushes. Grab your first piece of paper. If you printed the template from the class resources section, you have nothing to do. If you haven't printed it, now is the time to draw up the crystals or transfer the template onto your page. Split the page into four equal parts. This is where we'll discuss the four properties of color. Please draw three smaller crystals in the first section and one larger crystal on each of the other three sections. You can outline the smaller ones with black pen because we will not paint the different facets separately. If you do this, make sure that you use a brand that does not dissolve in water. As we discussed earlier, hue answers the question, what color is this? Our split primary color wheel describes this property very well. In this lesson, we'll reach for our brushes and start painting different hues. Instead of painting a boring color wheel however, we'll color our first set of crystals. We will stick with the easier secondary colors of orange, green, and purple, and try mixing right on the page. Let's start with orange for the first crystal, I will get the brightest orange if I mix warm red with warm yellow. Now, when it comes to mixing secondary colors, it will never be a one-on-one ratio. In the case of orange, red is just a stronger, darker color than yellow. If we use the same amount of yellow as red, we would just get an even warmer red. To actually reach orange, we will need a lot more yellow than red. This is specific to the technique of watercolor, where we always go from light to dark. But you're advised to follow the same rule in any other technique as well, unless you want to waste a lot of paint. Mixing on the page means I will first grab the lighter color, in this case, that is yellow and paint my entire crystal in this color. I used enough water for this to stay wet while I clean my brush, pick up my warm red, and touch the wet surface a couple of times. Notice that I only touched the surface instead of painting it because I need to transfer less red pigment than yellow to create orange. I clean my brush again and just mix up these pigments with a clean, wet brush. It doesn't have to be an even surface. It is okay if you see different shades of orange. This is the nature of watercolor and it can actually create a really interesting texture. Let's move on to the next crystal now, this is going to be green. I will mix green by using cool yellow and cool blue. Here again, I'm going to add a lot more yellow, which is the lighter color. Let's paint the crystal yellow just like we did in the previous crystal. The only difference is that we'll use cool yellow instead of warm this time. Now, clean your brush, and grab some cool blue paint, and touch the surface again while it's still wet. You really don't need very much blue for this. It is about the darkest color on the color wheel. Now, clean your brush and mix the two colors together with your wet brush. Let's move on to the last crystal, which is purple. To create purple, I'll use cool red and warm blue. In the case of these two colors, we'll apply red first and gradually add the blue pigments, which are darker than red. Now, wash your brush again and mix the two colors on the crystal. Now, we have created the brightest versions of the secondary colors. It is worth noting though, that you don't always need the brightest possible versions. If you look carefully, you'll find a lot more dull colors in nature than really bright ones. You can actually use this split primary color wheel to create toned-down versions of the secondary colors. For example, mixing a cool yellow with a warm purplish blue instead of cool turquoise, will give you a very natural green. Also, if your palate includes secondary colors, you are welcome to use them to mix tertiary colors. I have both cold and warm green in my palette for instance, which I use all the time. However, it is still worthwhile to understand how secondary colors are mixed because tertiary use the same principles. When you mix on the page, you should always use the wet-on-wet watercolor color technique. If your first color dries before you apply the second, the colors will not mix into each other. Also, whatever mixing technique you use, whether you mix on the page or on the palette, you should always use the lighter color first and gradually add the darker one. 8. Color Properties: VALUE: Next up in the line of color properties we'll discuss value. Value basically answers the question of how light or dark one color is. As I've said earlier, differentiating between light and dark areas in a painting will help the viewer understand where the light is coming from because areas that are in the shadow are darker. In this lesson, I'll teach you how to reach different shades of the same hues in watercolor. In the case of watercolors, the exact value depends on the water pigment ratio in your brush. If you brush holds a lot of water and only little pigment, the color gets lighter. If you use more pigment and less water, it gets darker. You want to avoid reaching dark or light values by mixing black or white to your color. Adding both of these colors will dull the brightness of your original color and turn them into mud or a pastel. Many artists think that white and black are actually not colors but light itself and the complete lack of light. Strictly speaking, white doesn't exist in watercolor because watercolor is a transparent paint. If you find white in your palette, that is usually much more opaque than other colors. Most water-colorists avoid using these two colors. Before painting our crystal, let's try painting four different shades of blue in swatches above the crystal. For this exercise, we will mix the colors on the palette. I will use my cold blue for this but you can use any color you like. After wetting my brush, I get rid of the excess water on the side of my water container, then I pick up a fair amount of pigment by circling in the pan with my brush. If you use tubes, you should get some of the paint on your mixing palette first, but otherwise work the same way. The main point here is that your brush should not be too wet. As you can see, my first swatch is pretty dark. Now I dip my brush back into the water once or twice, get rid of the excess water again by brushing against the side of my container and paint the next swatch without touching my paint. I'll repeat this process again and again. Depending on how pigmented your paint is, you might need two or three dips into your water to turn the colors significantly lighter. When I do an actual painting, I usually have some scrap paper next to me where I can check how light the exact color is before I apply it onto my paintings so I don't get any surprises. If your first swatch is too light, you can always darken it by adding an extra layer of paint. This is a specific thing in watercolor. You can darken a color by adding more and more layers of the same color on top of each other, but you should always wait for your first layer to dry before you apply the second. Now let's move on to our crystal. We will paint with different facets using different values, starting with the lightest. I am including a little graphic here the corner of the video so you'll see the order in which I'm painting. I will paint four different values. Number 1 will be the lightest color while four will be the darkest. I'm using some scrap paper to check if I've managed to reach similar values as my swatches above the crystal. Before moving on to the next value, I need to wait for the paint to dry, otherwise, the two areas would blend into each other. If you are impatient, you can use a hairdryer to speed up this process. Now let's paint the next areas a little darker using more pigment and less water. The reason why I started with the light color and gradually go darker is because of the nature of watercolor. Since it is transparent, I can always make it a little darker, but I can never turn it lighter. It is always best to start with the lightest colors first and then gradually darken your painting. Now that the second values have dried, I can move on to the areas that I numbered 3. Hopefully this is still not your darkest, but if it is, don't forget that you can still add one extra layer to turn number 4 even darker. In my case, I can still darken my fourth areas without adding extra layers, so I will use a little water and a lot of pigment. You'll see it is definitely the darkest. 9. Color Properties: TEMPERATURE: We have met color temperature already when we defined the split primary palette. Let's move deeper into this matter now. Color temperature is important because it gives you the possibility not only to mix many shades of a single hue, for example, blue, but also to control brightness. I think that color wheel is most useful when you want to define color temperature. As we have discussed previously, these colors are usually considered warm colors. But these colors are considered cold colors. What is a little less known is that each and every color has its warm and cold version. Of course, you already know this from the spit primary palette. It is mostly easy to define which is the colder and which is the warmer shade of a certain color by looking at the color wheel. Green, for example, is located between yellow, which is a warm color and blue, which is a cold color. So greens that are closer to yellow will be warm greens but those that are closer to blue will be cold greens. Just like greens, nearly all colors even primaries are located between warm and cold colors, so it is easy to define which shade is warm or cold. The only exceptions to this are orange and blue. Blue is located between two cold colors on the color wheel, green and purple while orange is located between two warm colors, red and yellow. All we need to do is to find whether red or yellow is the warmer color. According to color theory, red is considered a warmer color than yellow. When it comes to blue, those shades that are closer to purple and have red pigments in them are considered warm blue while those that are closer to green will be cold blues. The same thing is true of orange. An orange that is closer to warm red will be a warm orange, while a yellow at warm will be a cool orange. Orange however, is nearly always a very warm color. This distinction is a lot more relevant to blues. Let's create four different swatches again like we did with values, this time concentrating on different color temperatures. I will use two colors for this, my warm ultramarine blue and my cold peacock blue. I will start painting my swatches with the peacock blue and will gradually add more and more of the ultramarine. Here we go, we have four different shades of blue that are at different temperatures. If you have more colors than the primaries, you can cool your peacock blue even more by adding some green to it while warm up your ultramarine by adding some purple so you can create even more temperatures. Let's paint our second crystal with these colors now. On the previous crystal, we used the same shade of blue in different values. Let's add different temperatures to these values. We'll go gradually again using the same template as last time. I'll paint the cold and light colors on the right-hand side and the warm colors on the left darker side. I wait for the different areas to dry again before moving onto the neighboring ones so the different colors won't mix. I always try the colors first on my scrap paper just to make sure that it is the right color. This is our crystal with different color temperatures. Now let's talk about the last color property which is brightness. 10. Color Properties: BRIGHTNESS: The final property of colors that we'll discuss today is brightness. To put it simply, this property defines how dull a color is. If we imagine brightness as a spectrum, one end of it would be pure pigment, the other end would be gray. These extremes appear only rarely in nature, but you can find almost all of the colors in between. This is why it is so important to know how to mix duller colors. To understand how you can actually create these, let's grab the color wheel again. There are three different ways you can turn your color duller: by mixing complementary colors, by mixing colors of different temperatures, and by adding black. Let's see these in detail. What are complementary colors? Well, these are color pairs that stand opposite each other on the color wheel. Complementary pairs are red and green, blue and orange, or yellow and purple. These colors behave in a special way together. When put next to each other, they create the greatest color contrast possible, so they enhance each other's effect. They just shine together and will instantly draw the viewer's attention. However, when you mix complementary colors, you'll get dull, muddy colors. According to color theory, these are supposed to end up gray, but in my personal experience, they are usually closer to brown. However, mixing complementary colors is a good way to tone down your color's brightness. The second way to make less vivid colors is using color temperature. As we've seen in the split primary color wheel, you get the most vivid greens if you mix cold blue with cold yellow. However, if you actually need a less vivid green, as you do many times when you paint plants, for instance, you can mix cold yellow with warm blue. This will result in a much duller green. You can also mix warm green with warm blue. As warm blue contains red pigment, which is green's complementary color, it will turn the mixture into tone down and rather beautiful cold green still following? What about black? You actually can decrease brightness by mixing black to your color. However, many artists consider black taboo. Colors that are toned down with black will lack the richness of those that are mixed with complementary colors or different color temperatures. In fact, when they want to paint black, many artists actually mix this color instead of using it straight from the tube precisely because of its dullness. I personally don't think it is helpful for your creativity to say that you shouldn't mix certain colors together. So I'd like you to experiment as much as possible, but I personally do not use black in my own paintings either. An important thing to note is that you can always tone down colors, but you can never brighten them up. So if you buy paints individually, you should always go for the brightest variations. Let's see some full swatches again in different stages of brightness. I'll start with my peacock blue again, coming straight from the tube. This paint that I'm using is really highly pigmented. So this will be my brightest swatch. Now, let's mix it with its complementary color, this red orange. I will gradually add more and more of this color until it ends up this cold gray color. If it's easier for you, you can mix the other end of the spectrum after the brightest one and only find the ones in middle afterwards. This might help you create a more even gradient. Now that you know all about brightness, let's paint our last crystal. I'm going to stick to the values like previously, but I'm going to add colors with different stage of brightness. The lightest area will be the brightest, and the areas in the shadow will be the dullest. I choose this path because this is the way we actually see things. When an area is in the light, our eyes can see different variations of color much better, but the darker it is, the duller we see colors. Again, I always wait for one area to dry before moving on to the neighboring one. As you can see, my crystal gets gradually duller and darker as I proceed. Here we go. You now know how to use the four different properties of color. Before we go on painting, I want you to take a break and take a look in my favorite color combinations in the next lesson. 11. The Jolly Joker Color: Before jumping into color harmony, I would like to share with you the agility Joker color that I use a lot, and this is brown. Brown is a magical color that includes pigments from all three primary colors. It tones your colors down in a very natural and rich way. I found this out through a lot of experimentation, and I want to show you what it does to different colors. I use brown most often to mix natural greens. Let me add brown to warm green. Brown has a lot of yellow pigment in it, and so it will always warm your greens. As you can see, this became an even warmer green, but a tone down natural version. I will now add it to cool green. This will create a tone down warm green that I like to use a lot. If I add brown to cool blue, however, I will achieve a beautiful and natural cold green. This is a much more natural color than the cool green that comes straight from my pan. One other mixture I use brown for is to create black or gray. If I mix brown with warm blue, it will create a much richer gray than if I use black from the pan. I can also play around and turn my gray into warm or cold gray depending on the ratio between brown and blue. Brown is also good to create autumn colors. You can mix it with yellow, orange, or red, and it will give you these deep autumn colors that you will actually find a lot in nature. I can, of course, play around the pigment ratios and achieve different hues by adding more and more water to the mixture will result in different values. So these are my favorite mixes that I use when I am inspired by nature, but you will find that they appear practically everywhere. Now, let's move on to choosing the right colors for your painting. Let's talk about color harmonies. 12. Pick The Right Colors: Color Harmonies: I hope that by now you can mix any colors you want, at least in theory. Of course, it takes a lot of practicing to actually implement these rules, but you have all the knowledge you need to mix all the colors of the rainbow. But how do you choose which colors to actually pick? Well, a lot depends on your personal taste, of course. But if you're really at a loss, there are some tried and tested color combinations that most people find harmonious together. These are what we call color harmonies. Now, there are many color harmonies, but in this class, we will practice three of these; the analogous, the split-complementary, and the triadic harmony. If you printed the template attached to the course, you'll see that I included three crystals for each harmony. However, we will only paint one for each harmony together, and if you like, you can paint the other two as practice. I have included my own painting process of these as a bonus video at the end of the class. What about these harmonies? Well, surprise. I'm bringing back my trusted friend, the color wheel again to tell you about color harmonies. The first one is the analogous harmony. This means a set of colors that are next to each other on the color wheel. It could be red, purple, and blue, yellow, green, and blue, or green, blue, and purple. You get the idea. To paint the first crystal, I'll pick the harmony of red, purple, and warm blue. In this painting, I won't pay much attention to values or brightness, but I'll still paint the different facets separately so they don't blend into each other, and there's a crisp line between the different areas. I'll mix in the page again. I'll paint one end of my area in one color, which is purple in my case, and the other end in warm blue. Since my purple paint is still wet, I can blend the two colors together. This is a technique I will use to paint every facet of this crystal. I'll move on to another facet now that is not directly next to the one I have just painted, so it can dry while I'm working on the other one. This time, I'll pick red and purple. Notice that I either use just one color or two colors that are next to each other on the color wheel. I don't mix blue and red together. I actually could do that, but that would result in purple, a color that I already have. Whereas if I mix one primary color like red and one secondary color like purple, I will end up with tertiary colors, which give me more diverse results. I paint my entire crystal like this, making sure that the neighboring areas are always dry. Let's move on to the next harmony, which is going to be the split-complementary color choice. In this case, you choose colors by picking one color, which will be yellow in my case. Then find its complementary pair and pick the two tertiary colors right next to the complementary. In this case, it will be this beautiful purple and a violet shade or warm blue. You want to mix these colors carefully though because they are nearly complementary colors, so they will definitely dull each other slightly. The best thing to do is to place them in different corners of the area and blend them together with a wet brush. I'll paint the different facets of the crystal with these colors again, making sure that I don't paint right next to the area that is still wet. The third harmony is based on placing an equilateral triangle on top of your color wheel and picking colors that are in the corners. This is called a triadic harmony. For instance, if I pick orange, two matching colors will be green and purple. Let's pin this third crystal into triadic color harmony in this instance too, it is better to let the paint do its work in the wet surface instead of mixing them into some uniform muddy color. We want to see the colors separately. If you want to see me paint the rest of the crystals on this page in different color harmonies, just head over to the bonus lesson. There are, of course, other harmonies too, but you can always turn to the color wheel for inspiration. However, let's see what other ways there are to inspire your color choices. 13. Find Color Inspiration Online: Here's the moment to celebrate. You now know how to mix colors in watercolor. If you find all this information slightly overwhelming, this is completely normal. Feel free to check back on any of the lessons if you feel unsure about how to mix a certain color. Don't forget that it takes a lot of practicing and a deep knowledge of your paints. Before I say goodbye, however, I want to show you two other ways to help you pick colors for your paintings. One of them is a super easy and straightforward one. Just head over to Pinterest and type color palette into your search bar. You see that you get many great results, but you can add key that would describe your piece. For instance, let's say, plant. You see you already get a ton of beautiful variations. All you have to do now is reproduce the colors. Another place to get color inspiration from is Adobe Color, which you have seen me using in Lesson 5. For this, you need to type color.adobe.com into your browser. Now, there are several things you can do here, but there are two things that I usually do. One of them is picking different color harmonies. You can see the analogous, split complimentary and triadic harmonies here, but it lets you choose from another bunch of models as well. What you can do is, drag the different colors on the color wheel and it will pick a color harmony for you. The other way to use Adobe Color is to extract color from a specific photo. To do that, you should go to the Extract Theme tab and upload a photo that you want to pull the colors from. This option will generate different types of harmonies for you. You can choose from different options on the left-hand side. You can also use this tool if you are not sure what colors you actually see when you paint from a reference photo. For instance, if I wanted to paint this apple, it has tons of different shades of red, brown, and even yellow, and green. What I do is upload my photo and just drag the little circles around to extract the color. Adobe Color can be a very helpful tool if you want to practice color mixing. You can generate different harmonies and just try to reproduce them by hand. This is it. I hope you feel empowered in your color knowledge and that you now feel super confident with your color mixing. If you like, you can watch my painting process of the different color harmonies in the bonus video. I hope you share your crystals in the student project section. It will make me really happy to see your work. Also, if you share them on social media, please tag me so I can share your work. If you have any questions, just drop them in the class discussion section, I'll do my best to answer you quickly. Otherwise, you can reach me through social media. I primarily use Instagram, but I also run a blog full of useful articles about watercolor. So if you're interested in this technique, you can learn more about it there. I already have another easy watercolor class here on Skillshare about negative painting. But I am planning to create more so if you like this technique, please follow me so you are the first to hear about a new class. Thank you so much for being here with me today. If you like this class, I would really appreciate a thumbs up and a good review. Take care guys. Goodbye. 14. BONUS: Painting Process Of All Crystals: Yes. Okay. Okay. So right. And the other solution. Again, remember we're under no. Okay. Yes. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay. No. Okay.