Fun with Watercolor Feathers | Femvisionary | Skillshare

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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

7 Lessons (1h 2m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. All the Materials

    • 3. Practice Exercises - Elements

    • 4. Project - Base Layer

    • 5. Project - Adding Feather details

    • 6. Project - Adding Florals

    • 7. Conclusion

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About This Class

A really fun watercolor feathers workshop with really fun and easy watercolor florals. This is a class I am so excited to share with you because it also goes into some fun florals! This class is simple and suitable for all levels.

For the Materials

- Cold Press Watercolor Paper 210 gsm

- Round Brush Escoda - size 4

- Princeton Ultimo Script Liner - Size 000

- Watercolor Paints from Nevskaya Palitra (St. Petersburg White Nights)

Then we learn some basic techniques, slowly diving into the classes and start practicing the techniques to paint our Final Project

Meet Your Teacher

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Watercolor Artist and Instructor


Hi there! I am Madhumika Sankar and I go by the name Femvisionary on Instagram. I am originally from India and have lived my entire life in the Middle East. I am an avid traveler and really enjoy dreaming up new places.


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1. Introduction: Welcome to my water colored feathers workshop. And I am so excited to have you here. I'm a watercolor artist, and this is my sixth sculpture class. In this class we are going to be talking about layering. We are going to be talking about easy, fun fluorophores and how you can make your artwork stand out by building onto the color min-heap, right? I'm so excited to have you here, have will surely go. And get started with the next few videos with your materials. And let's start. 2. All the Materials: Before we start with our practice exercises and the project's project, let's talk materials. So you're going to need the basic materials starting off with watercolor paper. I am using cold press paper. This is from brush. Shaw is 300 GSM paper. I think about 70 LBS. I'm not too sure. I will add those details below as well. In the description of the course. Along with that, you're going to need a round brush. I'm using an SCADA. This is SCADA. Ultimately it's a travel brush. But I would suggest getting another brand. My escort I brush hasn't lasted that long, which are not very happy with. But let's move on. Along with that. We are going to be using pins for the paint colors. I have taken three variations of the same color of ink. So there is a o propping, there is a more startup pink and then there is a different, she'd like a magenta pink. So if you're taking whatever color it is, try to make sure that they are shades of the same color. Can be slight difference. But that's really adds on. And then I'm using black. Additionally, I'm also using a script liner brush. This is for adding small details. You can use a round brush as it is if you're very comfortable with it. Otherwise, a script liner or a detail brush is amazing for this project. So now that we've gone through this, let's start with our practice exercises. 3. Practice Exercises - Elements: Now that we have gone through the material list, let's get started with our practice exercises. If you are at a beginner level, I would suggest going over the practice exercises multiple times so you can improve your skill before moving on to our final project. So we're going to start off with some really easy exercises. Now what I've done is I've made puddles of paint. So I have a first level of paint which has little bit of the paint, more of the water and you can see that puddle that I've created on my palate. It's very, very light. Now I'm taking a little bit more of the darker pigment and you can see how it's becoming darker. And then more of the pigment, it's darker. The tone is increasing. And then finally, I'm gonna take this maroon for a very, very dark dawn. So these are the three levels that we will be using in our artworks. So you're going to have the first one that's going to be a very light watery layer. A second one that is more of the pigment. And then the final that's going to be a darker color. Adding a little bit of indigo to this to make it really, really dark. So surely pops in the artwork. And this is how I create really attractive artwork. When I just use one color, the artwork ends up looking really dull. But when I'm able to create these striations of colors of light, mid, and dark. The artwork Raleigh pops up. So let me show you an example. So we're going to have for the Federal, we're going to be doing the light lines. You can see them. And the reason I have also zoomed in so that you can actually see the water and how much water is there on the people. And really get an understanding of water control as well. Remember, I'm not using too much water. There are no puddles of water because that would not be Jolie helpful for me. So this is a good practice exercise of practicing brush strokes in different angles. You can see how I start with the tip and then gently press the brush down and lifted up again on another skin. What I'm doing is just a thin line that does not have this feeling width. So I'm playing around with it if you notice. So I've started with one that has a big width in the middle, one that's just a thin line, one that's again a mid. So again, we're going to be playing around with this in the feathers. So I would suggest doing this multiple times. So you get a good hang of doing these. Curvy lines, as well as understanding the tones of the colors and using it to your advantage. Just want to show you again. So thin line. You can see I didn't press it down too much. This one, I'm pressing it down more and lifting it up. Again, doing wonders, strike next to it so it becomes double the width. And then again at thin line and then pressing down a little bit. So again, varying width for the lines. And also the distance changes. Really see, notice all of that. This is also the same practice that you would need for the leaves. So if you're able to do these lines, it's going to be easier for you to do the leaves as well when we go into the Florence. Now I've dried my artwork completely. I generally use a Trier like a blow dryer. You can just let it dry naturally. No, I'm going in with my second tone of color where it's more darker pigment. And notice how I'm basically painting over the lines that I already did before. This is again going to add that additional effect to the artwork. Some thin lines, some that are more width. And again varying that. Notice I'm doing it in such way that you can see the underlying light pink color. It's not like I've done it in such way that those colors go missing or the white of the paper goes missing. I've just tragically pleased it in areas that wouldn't show all of this behind colors or background colors as well in the second, in the first layer. So drying it again. And now we're gonna go in with a dark color. And I'm just gonna do thin lines in some areas. Again, remembering that I want the layer one to be seen and will the layer two to be seen and the people white. So I'm being very, very strategic about how much I place of it and how many lines I add. Now you can see overall compared to what we did previously with just one layer and this one with three layers. You can see the difference in the effect. Right, this one Julie pops more at looks so bright, it's so vibrant. Now let's move on to the next practice exercise. So this is going to be the floral that we'll be doing for this project. Some starting of a taking of very watered down layer of the Indigo pigment and water, just doing a better ship. What I love to do is make sure that the petals don't look exactly. Some love. I try not to make every single better look the same proportion of CME sheep, the deed. And you can notice that from what I'm doing like some of them are ten, some of them are bigger, some of them are more rounded. So I'm really playing around with that because again, it adds onto the natural look off petals. Now that I've done this light layer, I'm gonna do another flower as well. Again, notice that amount of water I'm using, I'm not using too much of water wet. It's bubbles formed, nor am I using to less water that the people looks dry or the paint isn't spreading smoothly. So you need to be very, very conscious about that. If you are struggling to understand what I'm doing here, I would suggest slowing down the VD0 and there's an option at the bottom for you to click to slow down the video. And at the same time, if you want, if you want more practice, I would actually suggest you practicing and more before we move on. So see it a couple of times. Try to mimic the way I'm holding my brush, mimic the way I do my petals. Now another point to remember is before this dries. So I'm making sure doesn't dry because if a dries then the effect that I'm trying to go for next gets lost. So the paint's still needs to be wet on the paper. And I'm going in with a dark layer and this is with my thin script liner brush. And I'm doing the tip or the bottom end of the petals. But these thin blue lines. You can notice that I've taken a very dark pigment layer or it's not it's not water down that much. And then I'm gonna do the edges of the petals as well. Because there was water before. You can notice how the color actually blend in. In case the artwork has tried. This won't be the case. You just going to get a line there. So that's why I said I'm trying to keep in mind that the, the layer still needs to be met. You get this beautiful effect. Taking some water to blend it together. The reason I need to do this is because the layer dried up, right? If the layer hadn't dried out, have been able to do this. So that's why I wanted to show you like if you do make a mistake, you pay your battles dry, then you have this ordinate option of adding again water in the battles too, so that the color blends. Since I'm using a rough caddy sheet, it actually takes longer for it to dry. If you're using a hot press paper or you're using some, or you're in a hot country, it's easier for you to try. So this is a great way to handle that. Just add another layer of water with your brush and then blended in. So I'm doing the same thing here. I'm literally going in with clear water, a little bit of paint. Now that I've done that, I'm gonna take my thin script liner brush, which has the indigo. And you can see how the color blends so nicely. Soap or really a loved this effect. So nice. And you can do the edges as well. Not too much because you don't want to blend too much. For you to practice a little bit more about water control, I would suggest actually trying to use a lot of water and then trying to use less water and less waters, you actually understand what the differences in your final artwork. So there you go. These are Florence and we are going to be using, I wanna do a quick, I'm going to convert this into a quick fun project. Just with like one more flower petal and then some leaves. So you get like a really nice bunch of flats. Indigo, really, really dark. Also, I actually like using indigo more than black. In my artwork. I feel like Indigo just has a battle field and a better look than using direct black. And see that how many is that? Now with my thin brush, I'm just gonna add in some leaves. To complete the artwork. The leaves that I'm doing are actually from the previous exercise that we did with the pink. So the same thing, I'm just making them smaller. If you are struggling with them, don't worry. You can just use a thin brush to create this effect. That really starts off at a 10-point, pressing your brush down and then lifting it up gently. And then I come back and make sure that the tip of the leaf is pointed. Let's add some more leaves. I really would such as getting this practice exercise perfect to live very, very happy with the final look. Before you move on to our final project. They go. Now let's move on to our final project when you're ready. 4. Project - Base Layer : So as I explained in the practice excites, this workshop is going to be in layers. So our final project is not just gonna be one there, it's going to be multiple layers. So I'm gonna start off with drawing my watercolor federal. I have added the PDF below. So you can use that bears here. I'm going to be drawing it out just because I'm really comfortable. But if you're beginning, you don't need to spend that much time trying to draw it perfectly. You can just use the PDF and trace it. I'm gonna be doing two feathers. And again, it's your choice. Maybe you want to do two of them. Maybe you want to do tree. Generally, if you're doing artwork, I would suggest doing three because it always looks a lot better than just having to you want to get an overall showing off the federal. The it doesn't have to be really perfect. It doesn't have to be too detailed, but just the overall shapes that you know, how much space it's taking on the page. Now in this case, I have taken a square that is about six by six inch, but in case you were doing a bigger artwork and having the feather and center it could to actually draw it out with pencils, you know. Okay, so let's start off with our first layer. I am taking a very watered-down layer of pink. And you can see it's really translucent. And I'm starting off with a very, very thin. They are. Notice how I'm doing the strokes similar to a practice. And I'm keeping in mind the shape of the feathers while I do this. And I also try to keep the edges of the federal. Plaintiffs kind of just doing them as strokes. I'm not calling all of the painting doing the edges. I'm doing them as the feathers would look, starting from the center and dragging them outward. This also adds to the effect. And you can see here, I've done it in such a way that there's light translucent layers and there's slightly darker pink layers. And I'm keep alternating between them. So I'm not getting a very layered sorry, a, a very flat there are a flat wash. I'm doing something that's more dynamic because all of this will be seen in the final artwork and the final feather. Doing the same thing for the other side. Again, notice how I'm dragging from the center and going outwards. Following the shape of the feather. At the centre. I am leaving a small thin gap because my paint hasn't dried yet. On the left side. Does a small thin line along the center. Just dragging my brush. Now going in with more of the pigment. And just going over this similar to the left side to bring in more of movement. Now let's do the other federal as well. The reason I'm doing two feather is because I want to show you the difference when it comes to floss, when it comes to that detail, how you can play around with, with both the feathers. And I would suggest actually doing three feathers so you can draw, really play around with it. It's so much fun and it's gonna look really amazing when you finish. But to speed up the process, I've done two. Again, following exactly what we did in the previous panel. A very watered down light layer going in with more deeper pigment. And I am leaving gaps between them also making sure that each of these lines that I'm adding are not proportionate. You know, some are bigger, some are longer, some are not longer. Okay. Fatter and some are less fat. I don't know how to actually say, Okay, sorry. The width of some of them is more and some of them are much more thinner. Now doing the bottom part, I'm gonna do this really roughly. We're just really simple strokes. So easy, so relaxed, and very vey, translucent. Now let's go on to the second layer. This is completely dried. A user normal dryer. You can leave it out to dry overnight. But I find that a bit tedious, so I prefer just using a dry so it speeds up the process. No, I'm creating another paddle. This is a very quick sorry, it some more intensive way of working where you create the puddle on your palate with the color that you want, with the amount of water that you want? Yes, it does make it does make the process a lot more easier in the sense that, you know how much water is there in that puddle. But at the same time when you're painting different artwork and you're doing multiple areas, this can be really difficult. So try to get into the habit of naturally knowing how much water you've used than needing to create these kind of puddles of water? I hope that's clear. If you don't understand it, please leave it in the discussion below so I can explain that further. Anyway, so now I'm going in with my round brush and doing the thin lines exactly like the practice. This is a slightly different shade of pink and I've used this specifically because I wanna actually show more depth into the color. If I use the same shades of color, it's going to start looking very monotonous. So a love adding in different shades of the same color. Now notice how I'm starting off from the center and I'm doing varying with some of them are ten or some of them are more spaced out, some of them are less based on really playing with that effect. Because it adds on again. You wanna make sure you do this where you start off with a thin line, build it up, and then drag it out to a thin line again. Because this looks so nice compared to having lines with the same width. This kind of thin, too big, too thin, looks so dynamic. It adds to the artwork. And every small detail counts. Ten line gaps decline. Again other than line, more gap. And just doing that over and over again. This process can be super meditative, just very, very calming. Also notice how I'm not making the right and left side equal. I don't want that to be the keys and wanted to be up down because again, adds onto the effect. If I'm going to have all of them at the same, it would give a different effect, which could look really cool and you can try that out for sure. But I like this. Again, play around with it. And maybe you would enjoy doing that better, having the right and left side at the same point. So the sum mid-level pink and I'm gonna go in with a darker, reddish pink for the next layer. Now that we've done with this layer, let's move on to our next layer. 5. Project - Adding Feather details : Part two of our project. In part one, we basically completed trillions of the feathers. This is going to be our last layer and then we're going to add on the flats. So this is going to be a really, really quickly or I just wanted to quickly go into how I do these lines because they don't want you to just do it out of guesswork because there is a sudden strategy that I use. So first let's start off with the deeper, darker, reddish pink. I'm not taking the theme color. It is a deeper color. A trick for you to build onto the color so that they all are in the steam to, is to take a darker color. For example, in this case I'm taking a red, but I'm mixing a little bit of the previous link into the red so that the color still merge. They still look really nice. And it doesn't look like the dredges came out of nowhere. So notice how I'm doing these lines. I'm not doing them very, very randomly. It's very strategic. It's generally at the edge of the prefer, previously online. And you can see this. It's either the top edge, bottom edge, but it's always at the edge. Because if you're doing it in the center, it's gonna actually effect the artwork. Then the whole point of doing the previous layer gets lost. So notice how these lines are all the same width or thickness. And again, always doing them at the top or bottom edge, but not in the center, so that we don't lose that effect. Also, you can see the bottom layer, the first day that we did actually shows through that is the reason why some areas of the feather are still white. So that does add on if everything was the same color, this had all wouldn't look as good. Every single line keeping some of them because I don't want it to look. So we're done with our fat. I've done the center line of completed it. You can see how the colors are bright and bold and really, really sanding out. And all of this is because I built up the layers and also occurs. I have added on. If a hedges down the second layer, you can see the difference between the previous video and now. And you can see now how it looks so much more brighter. So now that we've done this, let's move on to our final step, which I think that's the best step, to be honest. What do you think? Do you think that's the best step? I think it is. 6. Project - Adding Florals: This is going to be the best part of the course workshop class. I feel like those words are so interchangeable. Anyways, let's start off with the floods. And of this, and I'm going to be wearying the placements of busy. You can actually see how you can really clear on with this technique. So simplistic class that we did in our practice, which is starting off with a transparent, translucent or transparent translucent layer of a silicon or a petal shape. And then going in and adding just a tip with a deep black. That's what we're gonna do now. So generally when I'm starting, I'd like to start with the floss because they're the biggest element. And once I've done first, then I can go in and add the leads stuff last that are generally on the edges nor in the center. I tried to make sure they're either half or the petals that are coming out are smaller in size. Because I don't want to have these flags popping out of the feather too much. It's not gonna look that great. Going in with my thin script liner brush and adding that deep black before the layer, dry ice. Keep in mind that the translucent layer needs to be silhouette for this effect to book. In case it has all the dried, make sure you go and get another layer of the translucent and then try to do the opaque layer of black. The reason I chose this far competitive other flaws is because of the fact that it is translucent. So you can see through, you can see the fatter. You are not losing the feather effect with this. Now that I've done this, let's go in with our leaves. And I'm trying to do the leaves in areas that are empty. I don't want to do leaves where there's already a flyer, so I'm gonna try to do them in between so that they are not two. Na2. Sorry, I think I was trying to say that they are not lost within the artwork. And in this case, what I've done is the right side of this petal has detailed all the way on top, whereas the right side is going to have sorry, the left side is going to have it only midway. And I'm gonna keep playing with that because that again adds the effect if I do all of them in a way that it's all to the end of the feather. It gets boring. So playing around with variations. And I like leaving these leaves smaller. You know, because it also works with the proportion of the flaws, as well as adding to the artwork instead of taking you away from it. So just small floods, this process you can do with. Then if you find it easier than doing it with a script liner brush, but that's a personal choice. Just see how comfortable you are during the practice exercises. If he were struggling, then just use a black pen. And I'm gonna continue doing this for the remaining feathers and want you to see how I play around with a placement. How I make sure that the flaws are maybe not full-size. There may be semi or half. When it comes to the outer edges of the feather. Same thing with the leaves. Either try to bring them into the federal or if they're popping out just a little bit because I don't want it to go jury scattered and really of the form, the feather itself. Now that I've done this, I'm going to add some dots, Such as something that I like doing personally love adding dots to my artwork. Just small details. Okay, now let's move on to the next side of the feather and law folders. Looks, I love how fun this looks. And the next one is not going to be this fall on the rights on the left side. It's going to be much more relax is going to be lot more spacing. To compensate for the right side. Almost finished with kind of keeping them. I'm away from the artwork. And I'm kinda liking the whole artwork. I think it looks so great. I think it turned out really well. And yeah, this is something you can really have fun with. Try different flies, different effects. You can go into my class that is fun and easy, Flores and use the floss found dead in this mix and match and create your own. 7. Conclusion: I hope you guys really enjoyed the class, and I hope you were able to try the technique, whether you wash it fully or decided to pause along the way. I am excited to see your projects. I hope you shared with me because it's really amazing to me to see what you guys come up with. Play around with the colors clear on rape, the style, the proportions of the feathers, and have fun with the entire project. I am hoping you guys are following me on skill shares so you get updated next to my course, launched a course. I will also be launching another couple of weeks later. So have a look at that as well. And stay tuned. Happy painting. Thank you guys.