Mindful Watercolor and Painting Realistic Rocks with Dry Brush Effect | Camilla Damsbo Brix | Skillshare

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Mindful Watercolor and Painting Realistic Rocks with Dry Brush Effect

teacher avatar Camilla Damsbo Brix, Teaching Whimsical watercolors

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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

5 Lessons (30m)
    • 1. Welcome to class

    • 2. Tools and Materials

    • 3. Back to Nature

    • 4. Meditative Painting

    • 5. Let's wrap up

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About This Class


Did you enter the New year with a resolution to become more mindful and aware of your feelings, senses and creativity? Then this class is perfect for you! 


  • How can we use our painting practice to become more mindful?
  • Collecting references in  nature
  • Painting a series of 3 realistic rocks using watercolor Dry Brush method to create texture

So grab your brushes and come paint with me.




Oh yeah and I would love to see what you create! You can do that in several ways:

  • Share your project in the project gallery
  • Share your art on Instagram (tag me @camilla_damsbo_art and use #camilladamsboartinspired)
  • Share on Facebook and tag me there too (@camilladamsboart)

Meet Your Teacher

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Camilla Damsbo Brix

Teaching Whimsical watercolors


My name is Camilla and I’m a danish watercolourist. Mostly I paint whimsical flowers which I share on Instagram as @camilla_damsbo_art. Here on Skillshare I love to share my knowledge in fun and easy classes on watercolor and ink and I can't wait to see you in class.

I would deffinitly say that watercolour is the most magical kind of paint, and all you can do is just know a little technique, loosen up your brush and trust the process.



If you plan to watch one class this summer I advice you make it this one. It will launch very soon and you will learn the very best technique for your summer vacations or staycations - Watercolor and Ink! you will learn to draw 5 flowers and then bring them into a s... See full profile

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1. Welcome to class: Hi, I'm Camilla and Army watercolors from Denmark. And today we're going to look into mindful water coloring. So if you know the feeling to be a little stressed in the your heart is up here. When you go to work and kind of up here as well. When you come home, then the mindful water covering might just be the thing for you. We're gonna look into collecting references in nature and connecting without senses. When we go out there and afterwards, we're going to paint rocks from references going to paint this and this is a bookmark that you can bring to work as well or study. If you studying for us to remind you off this exercise and to relax more during your working hours, we're going into a couple of techniques, especially dry brushing. So if you're just interested in in that and not the mindfulness thing, then this class is totally for you as well. We're going to create some very nice, realistic rocks, and that is also the class project. So, uh, I would love to see some some unique rocks from your area that could be super nice and just upload them in the class project section and take me on Instagram as well. Um, Camilla, down sport art in Instagram where you might know me, but you can take me and I'll see you a project and coming on And I'll probably Reese here, some of them as well. So thank you in advance for that. And I think that is it for now. Let's just get started to look at some materials. 2. Tools and Materials: So let's start by looking at some materials here and we're gonna be with watercolor paper. I'm using a 300 grams from Cancel Bryant and cut them up in these small strips so the perfect for bookmarks even just cut them. What ever size you you prefer then? Of course, I have some paints here in these winter in Newton, but you can use whatever you have handy. These are kind of a mix of artist and student grade. I'm just going to use my lit as a pellet. Then we have some brushes. There's two round brushes here, six and eight, and they have, ah, very nice tip rounds up here so they can create some details. And then I have this acrylic brush for dry brush effect. And even though it's not in the watercolor brush, it's perfect for this type of painting because of the heart versus Then I use this, uh, what Joe open Unipol brand. And it's ah, it's perfect for those time to details in the white. You can use squash as well, then, of course, some tissue and some water, as always. And finally, we're gonna have some mood, some references from nature, and we're gonna go out and find them. No. So I'll see you there 3. Back to Nature: hi. When you want to get rid of stress and, Ah, connect with your yourself and try to relax more. One of the best ways to do it is to get back to nature. So I took you to this fabulous forest. This place is so amazing and the I'm fortunate to have it very close by in my house, so that is very, very good for me. But you don't have to have a forest in the backyard to go back to nature. You can easily do it in this urban setting as well. There's a lot of parks, and even if you just go for a stroll, you can find nature anywhere. You just have to go out there and look for it. And when you go out in the in nature to connect with yourself, there's a couple of things you have to consider. First of all, don't go out for just five minutes. Go for a long stroll, go out for like an hour and feel your blood pumping and really try to connect with your body. And it's it's amazing and you can maybe you could even feel it the day after, and that is perfect, because then you actually really needed it. Um, to do that and focus on being in the present, focus on your senses and smell all the wonderful sense here. There's water and the grass smells lovely and forest dirt, and there's so many amazing sense Focus on the sound. I can hear birds and some people in the background, but there's a lot of sounds, and you can listen to them and really try to assume in on it and and focus on them. You can also try to focus on on the feeling you get when you walk in the grass on the dirt . This sounds there, and you can feel the texture you're walking on, and that is actually really amazing. And try to find textures you can feel with your hands like you can find rocks. You can touch trees, tree trunks up amazing textures, and you can you can feel that, and you can really try to connect with your senses this way. And when you're out here, don't bring your phone. Um, you probably know just as well as me that when we bring our phone every now and then, we will think what happened on Instagram and just just take our phones out of the pocket and just check just chicken. And we don't want to do that. We just wanna focus on being in nature. So leave it at home for once. And, uh, when you do that, you can focus on finding some references instead. And that's what we're gonna do now. So I'm gonna actually turn off my phone, because that's what I'm using to fill. But I'm gonna go and find some references in this amazing place, so I'll see you in a bit. 4. Meditative Painting: So I set up our workstation here, and I'm just going to put my references in front of me and have my my paper right next to it. On first, I'm going in with just defining the ship in the Clearwater so we can make our first base layer in a when and what technique. And I'm just going to start with one rock here and just mixing a little Payne's gray and just dropping in some of the color and, uh, focus focusing a lot on looking at the rock and just dabbing in where I see shadow and where I see light. So this is a super super relaxing form off painting. See, I'm holding my my brush in Ah, in an angle that won't make any details at all. No, I'm just dabbling in a little brown as well to mix, uh, with the Paynes grey. And they're making amazing thing about this wedding where technique is that it will. It will blend super super nicely in the and make a very nice base color for rock. It will dry a lot lighter, as you know, So be sure to to drop in quite a lot of color. Um, just to make sure that it's it's visible. But you can see I'm not overworking anything here just diving in some color and that's it. And moving on to the next one. And the perfect thing about painting like this is that now the first rock has times dry. So for those people who were impatient and especially if you are using this as a meditation and that you tend to, I think too much if you have to wait for stuff to dry. This is perfect because you can just kind of being a flow all the time. I'm using the same technique here and just looking at the rock and seeing which colors Ah, present. And you can see I'm actually using a lot of green here. And ah, it's not that green, this rock. But ah, really like how there's a little bit of green and I'm trying to to kind of make that more present in this interpretation. As an artist, you were always allowed to make your own interpretations of the subject. That's the fun part, right? So, uh, that's perfect, unless you, of course, I the realistic, very realistic painter than the stick to what you can see. But the in here, the point is to relax and the kept get focused on on the subject. I use painting a lot for as estimate meditation. For some reason, I I tried meditating, You know, the rial kind where you sit with your legs crossed and stuff, um, to to Congo. Some stress I had, and that was that was nice, but I could never stopped thinking about where my what what? What I needed to buy groceries or ah, what to eat for dinner and stuff like that. Uh, but when painting, I can't Anna flow and, uh, and that it's so, so much better. I can really just just be in the moment and focusing on looking at my references and putting paints to paper. So for me and I think maybe for you as well, uh, painting is the perfect meditation. We don't need to meditate the traditional way. We can do that as well, of course, But, uh, you can also do this. The important thing is that we are present in the moment, and with watercolor painting, it's easy to just focus on the around reference of the flow off the for paint in the water or just looking at how the coast blend. It's so beautiful in this so maney, super relaxing techniques and the and waste to let the pain work. It is a very unpredictable media, and I think that is actually one of the reasons that it's so minutes. It's doofus. Well, that you really have to let go off off any expectations and just let it let it flow. And with that being said, if the rocks you create doesn't look exactly like the reference, then don't be discouraged. You had a wonderful time and you got to paint in the time, will you actually focused on painting and just focused on that? So now I'm going to destroy a little bit before we're gonna continue. And I just change the angle here, up it so we can do our second layer in the different angle. Where did I'm not going to core your vision with my hand and sorry about that. Now, just going in with a bit, uh, figure blend off the same color. This is a pains. Great. And I'm just again painting what I see on the rock and just kind of deepening the color. No. I going with Don't Russia to even out the itches. Usually we don't want too many hostages. Unless that, of course, there is hostages on. Well, Chief, I like to soften the edges with a day brush as I go along before they try too much. And as you can see, the base layer is assuring underneath really, really like that about this technique, and this is actually, of course, it's It's, uh, it's more dry on wit. You can see I could make a little more detail, uh, in the cleaning, but I've also still dropping in some some paint as I go along. So it's It's not just dry on what it's also also went on with, and I think it would be fair to say that I did speed up this video a little bit, so I'm not painting this fast, and you just take your time with your with your own painting. Don't be stressed by the by the pace here. Newseum Just working my way around this, this rock and, uh, just looking at looking up at the Rock often so I can see where do the Rock have some fence . And how does it look? The shadows on the the dark grave with the brown? Where does it? Where does it flow? Was he here? It had some cracks just having that in. And as you can see, there's no much detail it yet. At the moment, it's more like kind of a blob in the two colors. But that's okay. We're going to have details later, and I'm just moving on fluently to the next. Here we have some flint in this one, and that is, I think that's one of the thing that's love about rocks. To find Isa rocks with different textures to, uh, try to emulate in water color and see the rest of the rug is pretty textured, and that is a lot different than the flint. That's very smooth. So trying to make some highlights in here as well, yet now I'm using my tip of my brush to add some color as well. Newseum almost like stippling it Ah, on the rock just to stop making a little texture as well. So we don't want to go in and just paint, uh, like a e complete surface of paint. When it's textured like this. The flint was different because that is very smooth and almost just one color. But in the rest of this rock, we have a lot of picture and we trying to to show this year in the in the color And I'm just lifting some off the Paynes grey here, and you can see I create some highlights with a damp brush, and you can easily do that. But just, uh, clear cleaning your brush and dabbing it on the your tissue so it's not too wet, and then you can lift up some of the the excess color. And I'm just going in on my last rock here and you can see that it has both the these super nice texture, almost yellow spots. And then it has, I think, to lend, actually to, uh, but a little more textured Um, so I'm going in and just defining that, trying to make it more textured where it is most textured in the rock and more smooth. Witt's mother, of course, uh, one of the important things when you're using painting a smell petition is to Mona task in the If you look that up, I think it's. There's a lot of people who are talking about that. It's really, ah, the contrast to multitasking. You just want to do one thing. So, like when we were outside collecting references and we lift our phone at home, you should definitely do the same here. Leave it out in the kitchen or wherever you have it and leave it with no sound on so you don't get disturbed. But you can focus on being present in the painting Citian and the even. If you're painting session might be just 10 minutes or if it's an hour or two. The important thing is that you are present. Otherwise it'll not work is as meditation bump, but more like just regular painting. And that is fine, of course, but ah, that's not the point here. We want to get focused on our work and on our senses here just being present. I actually enjoy painting a lot more like that when it's possible. Now it's dry and we're gonna go in with our dry brush for the final details. Another fan, almost. We're creating texture here. You just wet my paint with another brush, and I'm just dabbing my my dry brush in the paint. You can see I'm holding it askew here and just, uh, both creating texture and trying Teoh to mimic the lines of the of the rock. And I'm actually not using that much paint. A So you can see I'm not using Ah, nearly as much as I did with the round brush and the two other techniques. Because I'm even though it's almost empty of, uh, paint, you can still use the dry brush effect to even out what you already have painted and make it even more textured. And I'm just trying trying Teoh very my strokes here. So, uh, it doesn't get to even since it is a rock would really want to make it look natural and just like it came from. From of course, the you can see, I'm really just working here with my bristles and the and it is important that is a This brush is quite handsome, quite hard bristles. Otherwise you won't be able to to work it quite as much. If you, um, used too much water on you don't want to predict Dip it in water. That's the first thing first thing that is quite important, but it can get a little watery because, of course, there's water in our paint. And then you might want a little dry. Actually, uh, all you can have another brush laying around. You know, I'm just stumbling away, um, holding it again in a different angle. And I'm just varying angle all the time to make it look natural. And I think this this effect is so fun to to paint, and it really makes our motive look a lot more realistic. And I actually I didn't clean my brush between you, the Paynes grey I used in the first Rock, and this next one that I mostly used brought brown and the green. Um, and that's okay. That's totally fine. And, uh, the pain zgray that's left in the brush will, of course, be a little notice civil in the middle Rockets. Well, but that's OK, because it's probably there already in in the rial rock. You can see this. The stocks butts in there as well. Um, of course, if you do, you really don't want who have them have the other paint showing you can rent your Russian , let it dry. But I like the unpredictable nature of off paint In my brush, of course, you clean it afterwards after you painted the east three rocks. Um, rocks are a pretty similar subject. They look a little alike, even though they were differently. Look, a little like it doesn't matter if a little color gets mixed and you can see how nice it is just too work around these, uh, textures and even just moved from rock to rock. Just add details. Very, very relaxing. And these, uh, this is also a way to create shadow that I didn't create in, uh, the two first steps so you can go in with a a darker color and just create a little bit of shadow with your stippling. And, of course, have your your other brush is laying around. If you want to add small details to the rockets, will, you might want to darken Cem some spots like I do here, For example, they go and I'm just checking. The 1st 2 are dry, and they are So I'm just going in with my my unit ball. What? Gilpin? Oh, I'm just going to move this so I don't lay my hand in Yeah, I'm just going to use this for some very small details, like this. Beautiful around circle around the rock here. I think that it's the final details that you can go in and just do that. Do a small, small details like this. Just doing a little bit of highlights here in in the flint. And here it doesn't need much, but I'm just going in to do a little because it does make make it pop a little more does create a little dimension. And I'm just going in with my brush to soften the edges off of this as well. You can easily do that. You stamp brush and you can just soften it like this. Uh, otherwise could be a little hard to look at. And I think that is it. Let's look at the results. Here you have it. Three burn eyes, rocks painted in a very meditative sewn 5. Let's wrap up: Thank you so much for taking this class with me. I hope you got inspired to go on nature and find your references and, uh, at the same time, get some fresh air and just enjoy the moment and experience the the nature do you have around you? Um, the class project is, of course, to paint a bookmark like I did using your own references, and you can use mine as well. I'm going to upload a picture of the rocks, but please go out in nature. That is so much better for for you. And it's always nice to find your own references on upload the project in class Projects section and take me on instagram if you posted there so I can see it uncommon. I love to see student projects. And seriously, that is the most fun about two things. So I really hope you do that, and I'll probably re share some of them as well. So I can't wait to see them there. And if you like, the class priestly will review, um, that helps other students find the class easier. And, uh, it makes me so happy. So to two births and no you can say that. That would be amazing. Thank you. And I think that is it for now. So until next time