Live Encore: Practice Watercolor & Gouache with Fun Florals | Dylan Mierzwinski | Skillshare

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Live Encore: Practice Watercolor & Gouache with Fun Florals

teacher avatar Dylan Mierzwinski, Illustrator & Lover of Flowers

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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

6 Lessons (56m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Getting Started

    • 3. Improvised Painting

    • 4. Planned Painting

    • 5. Wet on Dry

    • 6. Finishing Touches

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About This Class

Paint fun florals while practicing watercolor and gouache techniques with artist and illustrator Dylan Mierzwinski. 

In her Skillshare Live session, recorded using Zoom and featuring participation from the Skillshare community, Dylan Mierzwinski guides students through a floral painting using watercolor and gouache techniques.

Dylan paints the same beautiful flower side-by-side using a mix of her favorite techniques including: improvised vs. planned compositions, wet on wet vs. wet on dry, and watery vs. thick gouache. Follow along in real-time with Dylan, and discover how these techniques can create varied effects of the same floral subject.

Meet Your Teacher

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Dylan Mierzwinski

Illustrator & Lover of Flowers

Top Teacher




My name's Dylan and I'm a strange combination of creative endeavors. From mixing cereals and making sand art as a kid, to graphic design, illustration, sewing, and general craft enthusiasm as an adult, creating and making beautiful things has not only been my constant, but an obsession. With an everlasting love of learning and trying things with my own hands, I've found joy in sharing what I've learned along the way in my eight years as a professional graphic designer turned illustrator. I believe in taking small steps forward, community over competition, fresh flowers, and Michael Scott quotes.

I'm so happy to share this creative space with you!


P.S Let's be insta-buddies :) and if you post any projec... See full profile

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1. Introduction: The three exercises we are going to be exploring today are improvised, versus planned compositions. Wet on wet versus went on dry and watery versus thick gouache. So we're going to paint this flower from the reference photo. We're going to paint them side-by-side. You can totally follow along with watercolor if you want or regular gouache. I commend you guys for being willing to just get your stuff out and try. Because I know how it's a tall wall to climb sometimes and we have to be a parent to ourselves in that way and say, "Look, I know I don't think I want to sit down and paint right now, but I know it brings me peace, I know it brings me release, and so I'm going to sit down and I'm going to do it." Thank you guys so much. I really appreciate it. I'm so happy you guys are painting along. 2. Getting Started: Like I said in the discussion posts, you can totally follow along with watercolor if you want, or regular gouache instead of acrylic gouache. Watercolor, it'll be a little bit different just because the paint on characteristics are different, but you'll still be able to get the jest. The colors I will be using for this, I'm going to be using this flash color for the main part of the flower, I'll be using coral red, for the details of the flower, deep green for the leaves, we can see my hands shaking when I pick these up, and olive. I'm not sure if I'll actually use this, I might use it for some details, but I also have some white nearby, in case I need to make some tenths and then I could also use the dark of the green and the light of the flesh to mix with other colors too if I need to switch it up. But, that's the palette that I am going to be using for this. The three exercises we are going to be exploring today are improvised first planned compositions, wet on wet versus went on dry, and watery versus very thick gouache. So we're going to paint two floral this flower from the reference photo. We're going to paint them side-by-side. So using either a ruler or a pencil, or two separate sheets of paper, or some tape like I'm going to, we just want to make ourselves our two canvases. These don't have to be perfect, you don't have to have the exact same aspect ratio of the reference photo just as long as, it's portrait like the photo. I'm just using artist's tape for this, but you could use masking tape if you have it. Since this is just practice and I'm not worried too much about the final result, I'm just fine pushing the tape down all the way. Sometimes I won't push it down this firmly, if I am gifting the painting or if I really want to hold onto the paper because sometimes it can take too much of the paper work with it. But right now I'm not worried. Helen there was a question in the chat window, are folks free to use a different color palette if they choose? Absolutely yes, and I encourage it. Absolutely. Just use whatever colors, feel-good, whatever comes out. I just wanted to show you exactly what I was using in case you happen to have the same paints and really want to follow along but no, please use whatever your heart desires. Remember, this is just practice like we're just trying to figure out if there's something we can learn here. So I don't want you to get too worried about the final result. Can we see both of these in the screen here? So if you pick colors that end up looking ugly, quote unquote ugly at the end, that's fine, you'll still get enough from the exercises to learn something. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to write which side is going to be which tests so that I can remember. So on my right side above here, I'm going to write improv, or you can write improvised, I'm going to write watery, and I'm going to do WOD for wet on dry, and this is going to be the canvas where I test those things out. On the left-hand side I'm going to write planned, thick, and WOW for wet on wet, and let's get into it. So the first thing I'm going to try out is the improv over here on the right hand side. So I need my flower color for that. So I'm just going to squeeze some of this out. The palette I'm using here is a disposable palette. It's made of sheets that have like a waxy film on them, and they are disposable so they're not as eco-friendly as using a piece of glass or something. But sometimes when I'm painting with acrylic gouache, not only can you layer this thing up and use it a lot, but I just get lazy and don't want to have to clean, scrape the stuff off, but you can certainly do that. I'm going to be using a size 6 round brush from the pigeon letters, and I may also bring in some smaller Princeton brushes for details, but you can use whatever brush you have. It totally, does not matter. I'm just going to get going. So this side is watery, and improvised. So I'm going to thin this out quite a bit with water, and if you guys have taken Alanna Cartier, she's another top teacher on Skillshare. If you taken her gouache teacups class, she put a really good tip in there that says that your mix should be like heavy cream, that's the ideal gouache mix, at least for her, and I think it's a good tip. It's like an good middle of the road. Just like a chef, you can test by dragging your finger or dragging your brush through it, and the more quicker it comes together, that's the thinner it is. Since we want to really push and exaggerate this, I'm going to really thin this out quite a bit. Helen there's a question. I'm wondering if you might be able to pull those colored chips back into the frame, maybe just up at the top there, lay them out? Sure. Cool. Thank you. Is this end frame? Yeah, it looks great. Great. They're the colors I'm using, and since we're improvised, I'm just going to get over here and get into it. 3. Improvised Painting: I'm looking, if you look at the reference photo, you can see that middle flower, if you were to bind that and that whole picture in half lengthwise, the flower sits just above the middle. I'm just going to go in there, and try and find the shape. The great thing about flowers is they have such natural edges that, you can mess the shape up, and it's still going to be okay. The main thing I want to do, is the center of the flower is more at the top of the shape, and so I want to emphasize that, so that we get the direction of it. We've got this little cutie up here. If you're already feeling incredibly uncomfortable, that could be because not a lot of people like to improve paints. I would say, especially when you're starting out, it feels much better to have at least a few pencil lines down. If you're already like, ooh, I suck and everything is bad. Be nicer to yourself because you don't, you're doing something new, you're trying something new. Also just know that maybe this won't be your preference. The last thing I'm going to get is this little bud, cute little bud sticking out, and I'm going to let that dry. You can see that when you extend the washout like this, it's like a water color. It gets more transparent. You can see some differences, it's not as flat as with a thicker application. When that's drying, I'm going to squeeze some green out and I'm going to get started on the leaf shapes. As a tip, especially with acrylic wash, so the difference if you haven't taken the class, the difference between regular wash and acrylic wash, they are both considered opaque versions of water colors. You can send them out and use them as water color or you can use them thick and they're going to be opaque and flat, where water color is translucent and luminous. But the difference between regular gouache and acrylic gouache is, regular gouache if I were to paint a painting, and then walk away, and it dries all the way, and then I came back and spilled water on it, that water would reactivate with the paint. If I were to paint that same painting with acrylic gouache, and I spilled water on it after it dried, nothing would happen, because the paint has dried all the way. You get that thick opaque vibrancy of gouache, but you get the comfort of acrylics and that it dries all the way. Which means you can really layer, layer, layer, which is my favorite part. You can layer with regular gouache too, but then you have to worry about the paint underneath maybe becoming reactivated. Again, I'm staining this wash out a lot, really pushing it so that I can see what that feels like and what it's like. I'm just going to go in and this leaf stands out to me first. I'm just going to go in there and try and mimic that shape. Notice how I'm not using the brush to draw the outline and then filling it in. That's definitely a tendency I had when I first started, I think as someone who was more used to drawing that felt more comfortable. But now as I practiced more, I've seen that I really love the organic shapes that the brushwork can bring. The unexpected things that you might not be planning for. I try to find the shape with the brush instead of drawing it first. But you can totally draw it first like this. So you could take your brush and try and get the outline of where you want believed to be, and then go in and fill it in. Someone asked the question about, do you normally paint with one color at a time? Well, you'll get to see when we get to wet on wet that that's going to change a little bit. But I like to do one color at a time. If you know my work, it's pretty bold, it's pretty graphic. I'm just my brain isn't, I don't know, fast or smart enough to be able to handle more than one color at once. But especially when I'm doing a watery wash like this. Let's see, it's right here. I recently posted this piece on my Instagram. I don't know if you can see, but the first layer of the tin and the background, is that watery wash, and it gives this really nice, just varying shades in there. At the very least for the first layer, if I'm going to be painting on top, then I do try to make it more watery and do one color at a time just to get a single color in there, and then I can always paint on top of it later. We can always take creative liberties with changing the way a leaf is facing or it's overall placement to fit what we're doing. I'm going to let these go off the page. It has these really cute little buds that come out. I've painted in the leaves that were in the picture, but now I want to use my own brain to look at this and see, I've got this white space up here. Would it be helpful to add in another leaf, and I'm not sure, I think if I add one right here that I might get a weird starburst going around it. So I might just leave that for now as it is, and we're going to let that dry and come back to it. 4. Planned Painting: Now we're going to work on our planned side. I'm going to grab my pencil. The nice thing is, since we [inaudible] we can learn from this and see is there anything that I wish were different that I can learn from over here. I would normally draw with much lighter pencil lines that I'm about to, but I want you to be able to see them on camera, so I'm going to go a little darker. One thing is the composition feels a little, it's not enough over here to make it intentional and it's not centered enough and so that in-between is uncomfortable for me. I think I'm going to move this flower a little bit more to the left and down to give myself more of a 1,2,3 composition, and we'll see how that works. I'm going to start by just drawing the center of the flower. It doesn't need to be exact I'm just trying to get the fullness, where the edge of that shape needs to be and trying to remember to mimic that natural roughly shape of the flowers. With leaves, I have found that it is helpful sometimes to just draw the center stem to imagine where the shape of the leaf is going to be because then you can just go on either side, and go out and then you know where to come back in because you drew that center line. One thing over here, I was following the reference photo the way both of those leaves come in, but I actually think it being more visually pleasing if it flipped out this way, so I'm going to change that. Dylan, when do you usually think about a shadow? Not yet. You will see when we start doing wet-on-wet, that I start to add more values in while they're going but certainly it's like, I like to think of it as your first shape should be middle of the road, because you can always add highlights and shadows to it. I like to find what is the most medium color that is being represented there that I can add to it. I'm not going to think about values yet right now I'm just going to get those main shapes down and get the composition, and then later I'll start thinking about values and adding those in. Make sure I've ruined every sweater I have by dipping it in the paints so if you need to pull your sleeve up right now, go ahead and do that. One thing that I lost in here is I didn't really get that great. Like you get to see the buds, but in the reference photo you get that awesome stem where you can actually see the stem breaking off into the buds. I definitely want that to be part of this one while still leaving room for this flower up here. I'm going to move this flower up here a little bit more. Like I said, I wouldn't normally draw this dark but the nice thing about acrylic wash, is I could cover these pencil lines up because of how opaque the paint can get. If you start drawing and you get frustrated that yours doesn't look like the reference photo, that's a good thing. It means you're making it your own. If you think it looks wonky, just embrace it because those little wonky things can really add character to the end painting. Try not to give yourself too much pressure. These are now hitting at the same level. I could make this one a little smaller, but for now I'm just going to leave it because things don't need to be perfect. Great life lessons there. Yeah. Seriously, I don't know about that. I didn't grab one of my real erasers I'm going to use this little guy. The reason I changed my mind on that is just that started it looked really organic and pretty before and then something about that leaf again made it, seem spider-like. I just leave it for now since I'm unsure, I've at least planned more than this one. You can see that I was able by planning, I was able to utilize the space better so that's nice. Now I'm going to squeeze more paint out. I think I've pretty much got enough fresh here but to a little more. Now instead of doing the one color at a time, since we're going to try wet on wet, I'm willing to try and blend some of the detail and value colors in while I'm painting this. I'm going to get my coral red out. I'm probably going to need more green than that. I think I started this here, but didn't finish. I probably got sidetracked. I would rather have to continually keep squeezing more paint out onto my palette than squeezing a whole blob and then it dries and I can't use all of it because then we're just wasting paint and that's sad because these little tubes are pricey. Like I said, I'm not sure if I'm going to use the olive, but since there's a chance I might, I'm going to squeeze that out. Then I already know that this green is more vibrant than I want it to be, and so a trick when you're painting, if a color is just like a little bit too bright, you can mix its compliments on the color wheel to bring it down. This is a resource that I got from Blick. It was like $2 maybe. They are really inexpensive and then this one has all of these different things where you can slide it and see how to make a certain color, but I keep it hung up in my studio just for the color wheel because I can't always remember what a color's exact compliment is, but I can glance up at this and see. If I want to push green back, I need to add some red to it. This coral red isn't red, it's light, but it's red enough that I bet if I grab some of it, it makes it into the green, it's going to change the color and it does. It's probably not going to show up on camera, but it just brought it down a level, down a little bit in saturation, down a little bit in brightness, and I really like that. Since this is a thicker application, I want to mix up much thicker paint and I don't want to start with green, so I'm going to clean my brush off. This one, since I'm going to be using two colors, I actually want to start with the center and I'm going to use my darker color and I'm going to use less water. We want to see what this thick application looks like. I'm going to dab that in the center because I'm going to pull it out with the lighter color in a second. Just looking at my reference photos, seeing where some of those darker colors are. Then you can rinse your brush or not. I'm actually not going to, I'm just going to go right into the fresh color. Again, using a much thicker application. I'm just going to start pulling from where this paint already was. [inaudible] a little pink, go back into that pure fresh color. As you can see we're able to start mixing right on the page and you get a much more unpredictable result. You don't know when, you know the light color is going to go into the dark, and the dark into the light but this is where you can start to play with the values of everything. This is going to give you a much more painterly effects, because so much mixing is happening. Whereas over here you're just using a single color that's going to be really graphic and then when we go wet paint on top of that dry, it's not going to be as mushy as this. This started to dry just want to get some more wet paint on there and just pull out. This paint was a little thinner than above and you can see I'm actually getting a watercolor effects, that one color is starting to bleed. That's one of the cool things of wet on wet, is the paint will start to interact with each other. They really want more in the center, so I'm just going to keep going back and I've stop looking at my reference photo, so I want to make sure I don't go too far. I want to make sure that the values makes sense, so when I look at the photo I can see that this pedal over here is in the light and the rest of them are a little bit darker and so I just want to try and mimic that. Then this center needs to be darker. Just like I used the red to bring down the green, I'm going to bring a dash of the green and the red so that I can make a darker shade for the center of the flower, so just enough to give it some focus. When you use other colors that are in the composition to help you mix, you help the overall color palette being unified. If I had brown, black or a blue or something to darken that, then suddenly we're introducing this whole different hue and that can be confusing. I'm just looking up at my reference photo and trying to see what those values are. Since we're doing one on wet, if it's not perfect, you can always just go back in. I'm messing with it. You can also use a second brush that's dry. So I have another size six here that I haven't used yet and you can use that to go in and blend things. This one is becoming muddy so before I overwork it, I'm going to let it be. What's happening with this one? This one's okay for now, so I'm going to leave those and start working on the leaves. You can already feel that like the thicker if you're using wash like I am. This thicker application, it's very satisfying. It's almost more blobby. You'd have a little less control because the brush dries out quicker and so you get some different shapes. This leaf is lighter on the end, so I'm actually going to just mix some of my flesh colored though, what's left into the green up here to make a lighter green. Again, you can use white too. I just was playing since this paint happens to be like a lighter color, I figured it would mix in here well. I'm just going to go in here and keep painting this leaf shape. I love watching Jennifer work and Louis paint when she does painting videos, because she does a lot of wet on wet mixing and when first goes down, at least for me, I'm like all it's messy, like I wouldn't be able to leave that and then she just leaves at B and she lets it dry it just looks awesome. Try not to judge what you're putting down too quickly. I'm going to bring in some more paint. I'm going to try this all of color. I'm not totally sure it's going to work. I'm going to put some white on my palette tube just to have it. I'm near the end of this deep green, but I refuse to start using my new tube until I get every pennies right out of this one. You don't need to move that fast; part of it is I live in the desert and so the dryness really affects my painting time. Lets see and that's pretty. If any of you are digital painters, if you use procreate or fresco, painting this way can be really satisfying after you've been trying to create these textures digitally, so you know you put so much work just trying to make something look painted, but then you sit down to pain and you can actually make something look painted, because it is. We can just blob some paint down and it's got that texture that I want. I just came in, again, with a separate brush to try and blend this out a little bit. Oops, I forgot to paint this bird earlier, so we need to go back in and do that. If you're having a hard time loosening up, you can try holding your brush looser or holding the end of the stick more, because then you get less control over where it goes. Like me, personally, I find wet on wet to. I feel like I can't really relax. It's definitely not my strength, but it is a good practice every once in a while just to remind myself of these, beautiful colors that connects. One of the other things of working with thicker brush, is do you see the dry brush? I have a ton of paint on my brush like it's globbing on there, but I still have this very light dry brush texture on there. That's just because there's not enough water to make it flow. I'm going to deep once in here and then come down and kind of mix and swirl around and see if that helps me out. Just chiming in here with some love from the chat. They're all saying thank you for the great tips, especially along the way. I know you can't see, but it's really something special to watch everybody's videos as they're painting along with you. Oh, I will for sure watch the recording. I'm so happy you guys are painting along. This is my job, as a living I get to make art and put it on two [inaudible]. Even for me, it's difficult to sit down and just get started. I play mind games with myself all the time. Very frustrating. I commend you guys for being willing to just get your self out and try, because I know how it's a tall wall to climb sometimes and sometimes, especially now a lot of us need our artwork. We need our creativity as a way to cope and even when we need it, there can still be resistance there and I think sometimes we take that resistance and we think like, Oh, that means I should be doing this. I give this example all the time; think about a toddler that needs to nap. How many toddlers actually want to lay down in that yet that's what they need and when you can just get them to go to bed, they wake up and they're fine and we have to be a parent to ourselves in that way and say like, "Look, I don't think I want to sit down and paint right now, but I know it brings me peace. I know it brings me relief and so I'm going to sit down and I'm going to do it. 5. Wet on Dry: I'm going to let this be for a second and we're going back over here and now we're going to with Wet on Dry. So everything over here is totally dry. What do I want to do first? I think first, I am going to play with the details in the flower. So if you noticed, I just picked up some of my paint from here and moved it over here. That's because when I started to darken those values for the center of the flower over here, that's still wet and I can just tell if I start to mix these together, it's going to muddy it and I at least for over here, I want to start with fresh, clean corals. I'm supposed to be using a more watery mix over here, so I'll try and thin it out a little bit. Again, I'm going to look at my reference photo and see where these darker values are. I also, since I'm doing Wet on Dry, I have way more control for where I want just little tiny details to be. I don't have to worry about it blending with what was there before. This probably got a little bit too heavy in color but oh well. It got too heavy in color. That's the beauty of Gouache. Once this dried, I could go back over it with the flash and bring some of those colors back out. Let's see if I'll add some paper towel. I know right now some people are short on paper towels. You can totally use a regular dish towel that you can reuse. But you can also reuse your paper towel a lot. I've been using this same one for a week. But I'm going to go in here with a little dab and see if that helps lift some of that out. I'm losing the flower shape in there. So I'm going to let that be so that I don't continue to overwork it and I'm going to look at the other ones. Lots more love coming through. I'll make sure to share the chat with you later so you can read them for yourself. But another question, can you briefly tell us what's the difference between Wet on Wet and Wet on dry? Oh, yeah. Great question. I'm sorry. I didn't do that actually. So Wet on Wet, sometimes with Watercolor, it means you will literally lay down just water. So I'm painting with water on here and then you'll come in with watercolor and dab that on top. So you can see, I'm not sure how much it's coming in through the camera, but everything just blooms. You have less control. The water takes over. If I come in with green on top of this, you can see things start to blend. So that's what we're doing here when the paint was still wet, we were coming in with more wet paint with different colors and mixing it all together. Whereas over here, we took wet paint and put it onto a dry surface. We let it dry all the way and now we're adding more paint to that dry surface. So in this one where I could get those really thin precise lines, that's as precise as I was able to get it over here because I had so much paint mucking around and interacting with each other. Wet on Wet and Wet on Dry is really fun with Watercolor because watercolors are built for that. They're built to be blending and always moving out. But you can see that if we had done Wet on Wet on the watery side, you can get a lot more blending like a watercolor, which is really exciting too. Good question. I'm sorry, I didn't think about. Thank you for that great walk-through. Someone's said that they find that Gouache dries fast. Have you experienced that? Yes, I have. Part of it is you'll get more comfortable with working at the speed you need to as you practice. I really did not do one on the center of this so if you have made mistakes on yours, have no fear. So I have this, I'm going to have to fix that with more flesh colored paint and that's fine. What was I talking about before I started to say that? The quick drying nature of Gouache. Yes. Thank you. But there are palletes you can buy. There's a palette called the Sta-Wet palette, but it's Sta S-T-A hyphen Wet. There's no Y in there because it's got to be cool. What it is is essentially a big sponge with a piece of special paper on top of it that you wet. So you can actually squeeze paint out, put the lid on, and then come back in a week and it's still wet in there. The only thing is it can get funky if you leave it in there too long. I think it can start growing things because it's a dark, moist environment. How do you manage to recreate the same color? Sometimes when I need to do a little of this or a little of that with color, I have a very hard time getting it back to what was on the page already. Totally. So one tip is if you really, really need it to match, is to just use the side of your paper to continually test as close to the area to see if it's the right mix. If you don't have extra room on your paper, you can always do it on a piece of scrap paper and then hold it up to see if you've got it. Then if you're mixing some colors, you'll be able to see, like this color right here, let's say I needed to recreate that. Well, obviously I know that this is much cooler than that so I must need more of the olive in order to get closer to that. So I can get in there and see I still need a little bit more olive and keep going until I get it close. So if you really need to match, that is how I would do it, but I will also say, well, it depends. If you are painting for illustration work, you're going to scan it then use it, then it really does help to try and keep things as uniform as possible. So in that case, I might use less color mixes and I might use more from the tube paint because I can always then digitally, if I need to make it a little bit more blue or a little bit more green, I can do that. But if you're painting like a fine artist and you're going to be using the painting as is and you want it to mix or match, I would say relax a little bit about it because actually those little differences end up being really interesting and they tell the story of you painting. So don't worry because I thought the same thing. I actually did a painting for a gallery show for the first time, last year or the year before and I was getting so frustrated because I was mixing these really custom colors. Then not only is it difficult because you're trying to mix but the colors are different when they dry that when they're wet, and I was so angry in here. I was like a toddler. I was so angry that I couldn't get the right mixes. Then I went and looked at other people's paintings a little bit more closely and I saw that actually a lot of people's colors aren't perfect. There is a little bit of difference and that's what makes it look nice. So too long, didn't listen. Relax a little bit and use less mixes and/or use a piece of scrap paper to test swatch the color while you're going. I'm trying to exaggerate it to make my point but you can see the difference that we get from Wet on Wet versus Wet on Dry. You know everything over here, we've got lots of different colors, got lots of textures. Like I said, it's more painterly and then over here it's much more stuck, at least for right now because I'm only working with these two shades. But I'm just going in there and trying to add shadows where I see them. In this leaf, you get the shadow from a leaf above and it looks like the spines and so I really wanted those to stand out. This is beautiful and folks are saying it's very relaxing and therapeutic and packing a lot of great tips. I know that we had only scheduled to the 45-minute mark which we're at, but if you are okay with [inaudible] I'm sure people would love that. Yes. Of course, for folks in the audience, if you'd only scheduled into 45 and you have to chop off, no problem. So thankful that you are able to join but if you can stick around, then let's keep painting. Yes. Definitely and thank you. Yeah, that flew by. So I want to try and figure out what to do with this sad guy up here so that he is less sad. Now that it's more dry, I can get in here and re-establish that center. People are very thankful that you're willing to keep going and there's a question, does the paint dry on your brush like acrylic and how do you clean it? Yes, it will. So that's the other thing. When I was using the green, I kept just piling more green onto it. I think of it as like choking the brush. Every time you cover this thing in paint, act like your brush is holding its breath and it only has so long and everyone's all you need to relieve it by giving it a full wash in there, getting all the paint off and then it can take a big deep clear breath and then you can load it back up. When you're done painting all the way though, just make sure you get it while the paint is still wet and I just do a pump of hand soap into my palm. I have foaming hand soap and I just run the brush back and forth and that will get the paint off and then I rinse it and it's good to go. If you let it dry on there though, you'll probably ruin the brush. I don't think there's any way you can really restore the bristles back to what they were. 6. Finishing Touches: One other thing I wanted to show, two things. So let's just say that we were done with these and happy. It's important to take some time to reflect and look at what you did and see what you like from it. I'm just grabbing one of my tiny brushes. Because if you look at the buds in the flower they're, almost starting to open, which gives them these awesome pink stripes and you guys know, I love me some stripes. So I just want to make sure that even though this is one on dry, I just really want those stripes to be in there. You can see, or maybe you can't see because that value, there's not a lot of contrast. So I'm going to mix the coral with some of the flash to lighten it up so that hopefully it'll stand up against that much better. Then the other thing I was going to say, so we'll take some time to reflect and look at this and see how I like it. But the other thing is if you test paint before you do the real painting or whatever, like, let's say you were just trying to figure out how to paint these motifs because I want to make them into a repeating pattern, but I'm not quite sure what the shapes are going to be and I'm not quite sure yet what the colors are going to be. It makes a lot of sense just to do a few test paintings like this to figure it out, and when you have two like this, I really like to AB test some background colors. I will start to fill in some background colors so that we can see that. I think since I was a digital artist before turning to paint, I got really used to how digitally you can get old, perfect lines. So when I started painting, I really thought that dry brush that would happen, it really felt unsatisfying to me. But now that I've been painting more, I really appreciate the characteristic of getting a little bit of dry brush, all I mean by that is when you don't get a steady stream of color, it looks a little like the background is showing through a little bit. For background colors, I really want to test out using the olive for the background. I think that that would really make this pop. But then I also grabbed my misty green, which I don't have the swatch right here. Oh, I do look at that, the swatch. So I wanted to see how these work. So I'm just going to squeeze them out and sometimes when I know my color palette, like sometimes I'll work out a digital version of the piece before I actually sit down and paint because I like playing with color digitally more than I do trying to work it out on the page. Why did I say that? Well that part's gone. Let's just all hope that it gets returned safely because who knows. Oh, I remember. Thank you, Brain. Sometimes if I already know, like if I'm doing a planned composition and my color palette is already planned. Sometimes I'll sketch things out and then actually paint the background in first and leave everything else in relief, and I find that that gives me better coverage than trying to paint the background around these shapes. But they're just different. So you might want to try that to see if you like it. I think she's on the call, I don't know. But if you guys don't know Corri Sheff, she is a Skillshare member, an artist and you've probably seen her in Facebook groups and everything, but I think I've seen her paint this way before and Corri, I'm sorry if I'm just so wrong and I'm thinking of someone else and you don't do that, but it's worth bringing up your art anyway. She does pet portraits anyone wants some pet portraits? I also on that note want filling in this background, well, two things. I'm left-handed and so I like to start in the upper right-hand corner and move down this way so that I don't have to worry about dropping my hand in it. The second thing about Skillshare, right now on this call, you guys are on a call with a bunch of creative people who are similar to you, who also wanted to show up and paint today. So don't be shy in Skillshare classes to look at the project gallery and see who's making projects and stop in there and say something nice because you guys know that it makes your day when someone comments on your stuff and you can do that for another artist. I started to notice because I've been a Skillshare students since 2011-2012 and I started noticing the same names in the classes I was taking. Then I was like I'm going to go find this person on Instagram and then we started chatting on Instagram and now we're friends. That's how you make creative friends. You find the people that are in your space, that are doing the things you're doing, and you be brave,and you reach out and then you have a new friend. The one thing I'll say about acrylic gouache is do you see, it looks very streaky right now and it may stay streaky because I've been using it at different instances. But acrylic gouache will even out as it dries, lay down the first layer and see how it looks when it's fully dry and then if you need to go in, a second layer will even it out even more. But also I like the streaky look a bit again. Every brushstroke tells the story of how this piece was made like being able to see the roundness of this stroke. You know that my brush went around this way and it just a little intimate, Easter egg to leave behind about your work. You also see how I drew those really dark pencil lines and even this super watery mix of that light flash color covered it up pretty well. I will say one of the nice things about doing the background last is if you do need to fix any of the shapes, you can just trim and paint over them. This background color feels very inner-bond, a grateful paper code to me. See how it looks. You guys know I love purple, yellows and browns to make things pop and I'm really liking the olive is the background color there. A question for you. Does acrylic gouache handle differently than traditional? Yes. Good question. I will say acrylic gouache when you first mix it feels a little slimier than regular gouache and I think that acrylic gouache since it has that acrylic binder in it, some of the colors can be streakier. For instance, this acrylic gouache color, this coral red has some white in it and that makes it really nice and opaque and it makes it cover really nicely. But if I pull up some of the other colors that don't have as much white in that like, this is rose. I think this is even more than one coat and you can see that I still got some streakiness in there. Regular gouache will do that too some colors are streakier than others, but I do think that I noticed that more with acrylic gouache. But then sometimes some of the colors will surprise me and they will end up drying better than they went down. As for doing fine details with thicker gouache, you will need to go slower and you'll just have to add more paint to your brush over and over. Rebecca Green is an illustrator that uses acryla gouache, and she uses it the thickest I've ever seen anybody use it. It almost seems like she doesn't mix it with water, and somehow she gets really, really fine details in there. I think it's just like going slow and making sure that you have enough paint. Then also if you guys have ever watched Helen Dardik paint, she is the queen of mixing up the perfect, it just looks like her brush never runs out of paint, and it is perfectly opaque. The nice thing about this is there is this middle ground mix where you can get things to be totally opaque, but also have it move really fluidly from your brush. I'll bring the antique tins out again. This red is totally opaque, but I was able to do the lettering by finding that really nice in-between mix. If you were using watercolor, would you do the background first or last? Good question. Probably last because with watercolor, I tend to be more expressive. I like to be able to just drop a markdown or do a little burst or a little flick of the wrist. There's a little bit more unexpected stuff happening and so I can't always plan for where that background needs to be. Since watercolor isn't opaque and doesn't let you layer like gouache does, I would probably want to make sure that I'm leaving all of the white of the paper for wherever any of my artwork would be and then go in after and try and do it. I'm happy that I did this AB testing because if I had to put money down on which color would have looked better, I really thought this misty green was going to be a better compliment to this. But I can see that it's just really close to that flower color and it's like over here, the flash pops a pink and over here it looks more like the flashy orangey drabby color that it is. Had I not done this test, I would have thought for sure that this color was going to be the better of the two and in my opinion, I'm drawn to that one a lot more. Also, I wanted to say we tried to separate plan versus improv, wet on wet versus wet on dry, but you can combine these in whatever way you want. When I look at these, I think that I tend to like wet on wet for the elements that don't need to be as precise. These shapes, you just know they're leaves because we see flowers with it, and so our brains don't need them to be as perfect. I might get in there and do wet on wet on the leaves and make them look really painterly. But maybe on the flowers, I'm going to do more crisp wet on dry details. I know I didn't make a good case for it here with this flower, but that usually makes me feel better and have more control. We're isolating these things, but they don't have to live in isolation. You can decide I want to do some planning, but I want to leave some room for improv for the foliage or I want to improv the colors or whatever the case may be. But while we're here, let's do the all important tape peel. This must be a very satisfying moment for you. The whole reason anyone becomes an artist is for the tape peels. You can reuse this tape. Sometimes, especially if I'm just doing practice stuff, I'll just take this off, uncurl it as much as I can, and then I'll just put it on my table. Then it at least gives me a few pieces to use later, so I'm not wasting all of it. There we go. We ended up spending like an hour or so painting these, but you get two different results, especially in the flowers up here and you get to totally try these different things and learn about yourself. I would say I already know my preferences more from painting a lot. If I just had to base it off of this, then I would say the wet on wet worked better for me. I like the mix of colors, whereas here, I'm getting that pretty clear true tone. I also don't love the way that the green, the color of it once it got washed out that much and everything. But this little test I did down here, where I did the watery wet on wet, I got some really interesting blends. Maybe that's something I could think of in the future. When I was first laying down those green leaves, maybe I should have added some watery olive to it to get a more interesting mix that's going to live under there. [inaudible]. Oops. Are you guys still there? Where is everybody? Hi guys. There it is. Dylan, that was amazing. I can't wait for you to go and see all the lovely chats. No. Real quick. I'm guessing we already have many Dylan M superfans, but where should they follow you if they're not already? First and foremost, is definitely on Skillshare. If you liked painting these gouache corels, I can give you a little sneak peek. My next Skillshare class that I'm working on right now, we will be painting gouache corels to be put on glassware like this. If you are interested in that, following me on Skillshare, you'll hear it when that class is live before anywhere else. Also, Instagram is my favorite place to keep in touch with you guys day-to-day. That's where I've gotten to know a lot of you and you can follow me at by Dylan M, and I have a newsletter. If you go to my website, which is a very leftover craft blog, there is a place to sign up for my newsletter and that is a quarterly newsletter. The spring one just came out so you won't hear from me from the summer, but that's a nice way to get the full Dylan rundown every once in a while. Fantastic. They can find that link to your website on Skillshare? Yes. It's just On Skillshare and Instagram, everything is interlinked and all of that. Someone asked me about the hashtag. I think we were doing SK live or SK live with Dylan; any of those things, go check them. But be sure to check out the other people that were painting and see if anybody feels like maybe they're a kindred spirit because you never know when your creative buddy is out there. Thank you guys so, so, so much. Really appreciate it and thank you to Skillshare for caring so much about their community. You guys, they turned around and started getting these live events up like that, like planning, marketing, getting it up. We really appreciate you guys being there for us during this crazy weird time and knowing that we are all together, still. Cool. Bye, everyone. Quiero.