Paint Abstract Florals Using Gouache and Ink | Liz Trapp | Skillshare

Playback Speed

  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

Paint Abstract Florals Using Gouache and Ink

teacher avatar Liz Trapp, artist

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

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

13 Lessons (56m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Class Project

    • 3. Materials

    • 4. Painting 1, Step 1: Sketching

    • 5. Painting 1, Step 2: Adding Leaves

    • 6. Painting 1, Step 3: Flowers

    • 7. Painting 1, Step 4: Painting Details

    • 8. Painting 1, Step 5: Using Ink

    • 9. Painting 1, Step 6: Adding A Background

    • 10. Painting 2, Step 1: Ink

    • 11. Painting 2, Step 2: Adding Leaves

    • 12. Painting 2, Step 3: Adding Flowers

    • 13. Painting 2, Step 4: Adding Final Details, and Closing

  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels
  • Beg/Int level
  • Int/Adv level

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.





About This Class

Have you ever wanted to jump into painting flowers but aren't sure where to start? What about exploring new mediums like Gouache or India ink? 

This class is a great introduction to using the mediums of Gouache and Ink together. In it, through two different examples, I show you how I construct a balanced composition using Ink and Gouache, how I use a photo reference as inspiration, and how I reduce the flower shape to its very essence. Some of the inspiration for these paintings come from photos, and some from my imagination. I hope this class helps you explore some of the possibilities of this medium! 


In this class, we'll cover: 

  • How to use a photo for inspiration 
  • How to think through constructing your composition 
  • How to abstract / simplify some basic floral elements 
  • How to add interesting details to your painting 
  • How to paint with Gouache 
  • How to add details with an ink dip pen and India ink

Materials List:

Below is a list of linked materials I used for this class, you can use the same materials - or use what you have around! Some of the links below are affiliate links, which means that, at no additional cost to you, I receive a small commission if you should click through and purchase an item from this link. 

Canson Watercolor Paper (9x12 inches)

Round Watercolor Brush Size 2 (best for small details)

Round Watercolor Brush, Size 4

Round Watercolor Brush, Size 6

Holbein Acrylica Gouache

colors used: Primary White, Shell Pink, Coral Red, Prussian Blue, Deep Green, Pure Red, Pale Lavender, Pale Lilac, Olive, Deep Yellow, Opera 

Blick India Ink 

Speedball Calligraphy No 5 Artists Project Set

I used the B - 5 nib (or, pen tip) in the video, but this set gives you a great variety of nibs to try out along with the holder.

Dr Ph Martin's Hydrus Watercolors

Colors used: Colbalt Violet, Quinacridone Magenta 

A note on class examples: 

Any examples made in this class (particularly if they are very similar to my own) are to be used for personal purposes only and my artwork is not to be copied from class, a website, or social media, and sold in any way. All of my artwork is protected by copyright laws. I do encourage you to seek inspiration and add it to your own style! Play with the possibilities! 


This class is a great compliment to another class I have on Skillshare, Painting Gouache Florals. You can take both, or just one! I recommend Painting Gouache Florals if you're looking for a little more detail on drawing, abstracting, and practicing some basic floral shapes. 

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Liz Trapp



Hi! I'm Liz and I love all things creative - I grew up wanting to design tissue boxes, running apparel, or limo interiors - so naturally to cover all my bases, I went to school for painting (undergrad & grad).  I'm pretty lucky that I did, my love for art has taken me all over the world, from living in France on a post-graduate fellowship to traveling to the Middle East. I've learned so much from my experiences over the years (but not how to design limo-interiors) and I'm really excited to share that with you. I believe that 100% of finding success and satisfaction in a creative career is showing up, again and again. 


When I'm not lost in a painted jungle of foxes, deer, and flowers - I'm enjoying life with my husband, toddler son, and baby girl. ... See full profile

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
  • Exceeded!
  • Yes
  • Somewhat
  • Not really
Reviews Archive

In October 2018, we updated our review system to improve the way we collect feedback. Below are the reviews written before that update.

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.


1. Introduction: Hey, everybody. This is Liz Trapp and a painter from Columbus, Ohio. I'm so excited to bring this class to you today. It's called how to paint abstract florals using gouache and ink. This is one of my favorite combinations that I use in my studio practice right now. I love the bright bold color that you can get from gouache paints. I love to make abstract and expressive floral arrangements utilizing this. I also really like that unique contour line that you can get from using black India ink. In this class, I'll walk you through how to make some really abstract expressive florals. But they give you this idea of a really nice floral composition. I'll show you the techniques that I use. I'll also show you how I use ink to really offset the visual weight of the image and kind of help pull your eye through its really fun process. I hope that you can use some of these techniques in your own studio practice and you can bring your own style to it. But hey, it's something to explore. I look forward to seeing you in there. 2. Class Project : For this project, you'll be making one floral painting using some of these techniques that I've shown you. I'd like you to explore a little bit of connecting gouache with ink, and see what kinds of effects you can get. You can also see how it works for you. In this lesson, I'm showing you how to make this composition and I'm using a nine by 12 paper. I'm going to use these just to frame and hang on the wall as wall art. If you want to follow along with that format, you can go ahead and get some nine by 12 paper. But, I also have another idea. That is, you can make postcards with this as well. Canson sells these watercolor postcard packs, and this one has 15 post cards in there. It's just nice watercolor paper. It's blank on one side and then has postcard format on the other side. If you just want to make something you could send to a friend or something that's a little bit smaller scale, then you can go ahead and try it out on that. You can really do it on anything that you want, any size, any format that you want. The way this class is set up, I'm going to show you two different approaches to this style. The first painting, which is this one, you are going to be working with laying out the painting, and then laying out the gouache elements, which are these colorful painted elements first. Then going in and using the ink to add to the painting and fill it out a little bit. Then in the second part of the class, I show you how to do this, which I call the painting tool. I reverse the process. This is really fun. I think it challenges you to think a little bit differently about your image, if you're approaching it one way or the other. In this image, I sketch it out just as I did with the first painting, and then what I did was I added the ink next and then actually with this one, I do dip into a little bit of water color for the background of these two flowers. I really just made water color blobs. If you don't have watercolor, you can just use really watery gouache. It's not necessary. I just wanted to show you how I got this effect. With this painting again, I just lay out the ink first, and then these watercolor blobs and then I do the gouache second. Through these two paintings, you have two slightly different approaches to the same process, and love to see what you create and what ways to apply it to your own style. I just want to remind you, this is really fun practice. You don't have to paint in the style and I certainly don't recommend that you paint exactly what I paint. Follow along with what you're interested in and what you like, and how it applies to your own artistic practice in your own hands. Go ahead and when you're all set, upload your project to the project gallery. I think it would be really wonderful. I'd love to see what you make and I know some of the other students would as well. All right, cool. Have fun. 3. Materials: Let's talk about materials. First, we'll talk about the gouache. Gouache is a lot like watercolor, except it's a little bit more opaque and has a matte finish to it, it's little bit thicker and more heavy duty than watercolor. There are a couple different types of gouache, you can get just regular gouache. This is Winsor and Newton Designers Gouache, or you can get acrylic gouache and this is hold by an acrylic gouache. This is what I'm going to be using. I like the acrylic gouache because it's a little bit more alike acrylic paint. That's something that I'm pretty comfortable with. This is really popular one. I recommend trying it out if you haven't tried it yet, just get a tube or two and see if you like it. The thing about acrylic gouache though, is that it cannot be reactivated by water. Regular gouache can, it's like watercolor and that you can put it on your palette, let dry up a little bit, add water to it the next day and it'll come back to life. That won't happen with acrylic gouache. Once it's dry, it's dry. Just keep that in mind. I'm going to be using this. I have some different colors. Let's see. I like this lilac a lot, can pull some white. Shell pink is like a super favorite of mine. Let's see what else here. Olive is gray. If you add a lot of water to it, it has a really beautiful yellow undertone, it's really nice. I like to use coral red, Prussian blue is one of my favorite dark colors. It's good to have some contrast in there. Think about some light colors and dark colors that you might want. I might do some pale lavender here and maybe some deep green. I'll get those out in my pellet. For paper, you'll want watercolor paper that's about a 140 pounds. I'll show you what I like. I like this Canson pad. It's really cheap. I think it's like 10 or $15 for this pad, I'm using nine by 12 size and you get 30 sheets. I think this thing is nice paper, I like to use it. For brushes, let's see here. It's just a nice synthetic. This is a size four round brush, one of my favorite. This is the size six round brush from Winsor and Newton, little softer. For this kind of painting, I use the smaller round brushes, so size four and six is what I have. Use whatever you have around. If you don't have gouache and you still want to try it out, just use watercolor and you can totally do that. The other thing is we're going to be adding a little ink in for fun. I just have Lick. This is just the India ink. It's called Black Cat Waterproof India Ink. Again, this is just a couple dollars. Definitely can add a lot of flavor to your practice and then you can use it with a brush. I have been enjoying using this type of pen. This is just a dip pen. This is by speed ball and it comes with all these different nibs and you can try out the nibs. Here, let me show you some other ones will yield different marks. You can just pop this right off and put on different size nib. They have different shapes to them. Some have like flat ends, some have ends with this little, I don't know what the technical term for that is, but this little thing at the end. Just a fun thing to add, that's what I'm going to be using. For the ink part of my practice and then other things I have out here, I have my source image, I just have it on my iPad, but you can print it out if you're going to use a source image and I have a cup of water and paper towel and the pellet, so let's get rolling. 4. Painting 1, Step 1: Sketching: I'm going to go ahead and just sketch out a basic ideas to where I'm going on this painting. I've got my source image here, and I just picked a floral bouquet from Unsplash, which is where you can use royalty-free photos. It's a great place to get some source images from. You can also take your own photos or work from your imagination. Anytime I work from a source image, I work pretty loosely anyway, I just use it as guidance. I'm going to go ahead and lay out just a couple of different flowers and I like to really abstract them. I'm definitely not interested in making anything super realistic here. I am going to go ahead and I'm going to lay out just a rose here. I'm just sketching a blab. I'm using a colored pencil mostly because I found that the pencil lines just always come through for me, and so I thought it's nice to just use them to add just a little more color anyway. I've got a little rose. I'm just going to put some lines there. When I paint it out, I'll add more. Put a couple of leaves there too. I'm going to add some on my source image, which I'll also link you to so you can see it. There are a couple buds here. Something you want to think about is what elements you'll make in gouache and what you'll do in ink. In this image I'm going to have mostly the center part of it, the gouache so that I have burst of color, and then I'm thinking I'm going to just use black contour lines on the outside of the image with my ink, and I'm just going to do some foliage or something. That's what I tend to do with this combination of style. But do whatever works for you. Explore different techniques, different styles, different levels of abstraction or realism. Just explore some really just the basic shapes that you see. I'm doing some berries here. One of the best ways to do it is just look at the image and squint, and just see what basic shapes you see. You'll find that you're mostly looking at ovals and some elongated rectangles and stuff that you don't like, take it out or change it a little, just make it your own. Also, I always recommend just as you'll see if you search floral arrangements, it's just beautiful to have a combination of large elements and small elements which will pull your eye through the image really nicely. Definitely, I'm just trying to get the feeling of this. I'm really departing from the image here, but I'm just trying to get the sense as to I'm adding it tons of leaves. Just love that. I love greens and I'm just going to add a branch of berries down here. I'm going to leave it simple. I'm going to leave a little breathing room and a little room to add on with my ink. These are not in the picture at all, but I'm going to go ahead and add just some basic flowers, just four petal flowers to pull us through here. Maybe one more petal. I'm going to leave it at that now and I'm going to move on to the gouache. 5. Painting 1, Step 2: Adding Leaves: I'm ready to start painting here. I've got my colors all laid out on my palette. On the right-hand side, I have most of the colors I'm going to use for my foliage, so on my leaves and then on the left-hand side, I have most of the colors I'm going to use for the flowers laid out. I'm going to go ahead and pick up this green. I'm going to mix a little bit of glue into it. I just really want to get a nice blue-green color. As I'm starting out with the foliage here. Think it's nice just to mix up some of those colors to get more unique shades. I'm adding in a little bit of red just to dull down that green. If you're mixing some colors and you notice that your green is a little bright, go ahead and add some red to it. That opposite color really pulls it down a little and you can get a really nice deep color with it. The thing I really like about gouache is that it's nice and thick. It has a great map covering and you can really use it in a thicker or thinner way. I've added just a little white to try to lighten up that color a little, and then going in and making a nice broad leaf. I'm doing this by using just a wet brush with paint on it. The paint is a little bit thick and I'm pressing down hard and the lightening up on my brush to get a nice broad stroke with a little tip to it. Here I'm just going back in and adding a little bit of a deeper color to the edge of the leave. I don't necessarily always do this, but sometimes it's nice just to add a little bit of depth to it. Next I'm going around my page and I'm trying to sprinkle in this same color green throughout my image. Usually, what I do is I tend to work color by color. I already have this color, my brush. I just work it through as much of the painting as I like before I move on to the next color. It also helps me really think about how I want to pull the viewer's eye through the page. That's something that I think about constantly as I'm working on this image. I'm just going through and adding some leaves to some of the smaller plants that I'm including, or flowers that I'm including. I'm going to be thinking a lot about the stems and not forgetting to include my stems here. I'm also just thinking about how I'm going to fill up the page, adding leaves, it's just a great way to occupy a lot of space on the page. I'm pulling out my olive and this is the color I'll mention and every time I use it, but I love this color. I love how, when it's thicker. It has this really beautiful green olive color and then as you add more water to it, it brings out this really bright yellow undertone and going back to my darker green and this time I am using that blue green and a little bit of red without any white in it. I like to have that as my darkest tone. I use that to again just pull your eye through the image. I'm adding some slightly darker tops to some of the leaves I painted already. I'm adding some super wonky branches and this one, I just actually sometimes hold my brush a little further away from the tip so that I worry less about perfection here. It's really nice just to let the line go wherever it takes you. Let it be wiggly and not perfect. It will turn out way more interesting because of that. I'm going to go through and just finish up my foliage here and I'm just adding darker leaves, lighter leaves, smaller branches, thicker branches and I even love to, once I have everything I drew added in, I love to at various stages through the painting, go in and add some single leaves or little double leaves where I hadn't initially planned. I like to take a moment and go back and see where maybe I left a blank spot or where I think that you might need a little more green or blue. Here I'm really dipping into the blue's a little bit more complementing your green foliage with some yellows and some blues is a really great way to just add some interests there. I'm going to go ahead and finish this up and take you to the next step. 6. Painting 1, Step 3: Flowers: Now that I've finished the foliage, I'm going to go in and add some of the flower details here. I start out really broadly and very abstractly in this first layer of flowers. I'm pulling out my shell pink and I'm going to go ahead and just start with a rose. I'm loading up my brush. I've got some water on my brush and then a pretty good deal of paint. It's not super watery, it's not super thick, somewhere in the middle there. I'm just going in and using the broad tip of my brush to make a wonky circle. I'm going to try to go around that leaf there. I didn't do it perfectly here, so I'm actually just going to go in and fix it once everything's a little bit more dry especially if you make a mistake. First of all, embrace the mistake, embrace the imperfection, but also don't overwork the image. Just stop, let it dry, and then you can come back in and see if you can adjust it with the paint to be a little bit more how you planned. I'm doing a second rose here, again, just using the broad tip of my brush and make a big odd blob. It looks like nothing special now, but we will add some details after that part dries in order to really bring out some of the folds of the rose. But ultimately, we are going for a little bit more of an abstract look. It's okay that every detail isn't there. If you are more interested in realism, you can certainly take these techniques and then really work on observational painting in order to add a little bit more detail. But I really like this abstract and expressive take on a flower bouquet. I think it looks just beautiful. Right now I'm just adding some more buds using the same color, and I'm just pressing down hard on my brush and then pulling up a little bit at the very end of my stroke to get a really nice edge to the very end of my bud there. I'm really thinking as I'm laying these out again, "How am I going to pull the viewer's eye through the image?" You can see here I have a C shape through the image using this peach shell pink color. I like to think about how am I going to set up this composition so that everything isn't necessarily laid out super evenly, but it does create some visual interest. I'm going to work now with this lilac color on a flower that has a little bit different petals. Right now I'm starting out with another blob. It's like a rounded pyramid shape. Now I'm creating these wispy petals. Again, I'm doing it just by pushing down a little bit harder on my brush to get the broad stroke and then pulling up at the very end of that stroke to get a little bit of a point there. I'm going to pull out opera pink. It's a color I didn't talk about initially, but man, it's one of my favorite colors. It's super bright pink. It adds a lot of heat to the image. I use it all the time. I'm going to go ahead and mix it in with a little blue and a little bit of red to get purple color like imperial purple, I guess, that will just add some contrast to the image. I find that opera pink is really fun to mix in with some other colors especially blue if you want a little bit of a brighter purple. I'm just adding some dots, I mix a little bit of white in with that color in order to get a nice shade that I could do just some thin lines with. Actually I went ahead and pulled out a number two brush for this which is a thinner brush. I didn't talk about it initially, but I do have you linked to all the materials. Of course, just use whatever you have around. If you want to get some of these materials that's awesome. You can really do this just with stuff that you have around your house probably. Now I'm going to go back in with this coral color. I like to use coral as a color that really offsets the shell pink. They look great together. I use them in pairs a lot and I'm just working on this daisy. I just need a coral blob and then went in and created some really imperfect super wobbly petals out of the shell pink. I'm going to mix up a little bit of red and white to create a little bit of a darker pink. I'm just going in and adding some berries on some of these branches that I had painted earlier when I was making the foliage. These are just little dots, I like to put them at the end of some of the branches and then add dots where I didn't have a branch. Next, I'm pulling out this lavender color and I'm just going to make some smaller flowers. These are very imperfect, they're just for petal flowers. I'm really using this element to fill up the space. I also like to think about having a great mix of larger elements and smaller elements. I find that this really creates a nice harmony within the image. I'm also just doing some dots, so I'm going to have little circular flowers. When I add details, I'll go back in with a darker color and define the center a little bit more. But ultimately these are very imperfect. Even in some of them, I'm using quite a bit of water in order to have almost a watercolor effect with the paint here. 7. Painting 1, Step 4: Painting Details: Now is a great time to go in and add some details to the flowers. I recommend you selecting everything dry for a little bit. It doesn't have to be completely dry, but if you can get it most through the way dry, it will be a little easier to add the details. I'm going in and start with this coral color and I'm going to add the centers to these roses. I'm going to start by making a thin oval and then I'm going to use that stroke that I've been using the whole time. Where I start just with the tip of my brush lightly, and then I press down more little harder with my brush. Then I pull up again to create this line that's very thin and pointy, and then it gets nice and thick and broad and then thin again. You can alternate how often you press down or light enough, and that will create a different type of line. Then I go through and move around the rows this way. The key is not to stack these lines up on top of each other, but rather stagger them a little bit, and you'll see what I mean is I continue on here. I'm creating this C-shape or U-shape with this type of line. You can see here, I'm not stacking them up on each other, but I'm staggering them. Then I even like to create them close to the edges of the roses as well. Those ones I tend to do either thinner where I don't press down as hard, or even sometimes I add quite a bit of water to my brush, and make like a more watercolor effect with that. Then I like to go back and just with the very tip of my brush and add just some lines to fill in some of those more empty spaces. I'll do that with the other roses since that one dries more, I'm going to go in and create edges to the rose buds. Again I'm just using a broad stroke and then pulling up my brush and creating a lighter line just at the very edge of that stroke. I'm going to go back in and do the second rows. Again I'm starting with an oval and then just moving around that center with this thin, thick, thin line. Creating these C-shapes, or U-shapes with that line until I get all the way around to the edges of the rows. Its nice too, if you think about putting that center of the rose actually not in the center of the blob. You can create a little bit different perspective if you're interested. Both of these, I really did put it in the middle, but that's definitely something to think about or explore as you paint. The next thing I'm going to do is add just a little bit of a secondary color to my berries that I have laid out in that darker pink. To do that, I'm just using a little bit of the opera pink mixed with white and adding a small dot that's just offset with the initial berry. Just create a little bit of visual interests again, throughout the image. It's really fun to do little bit meditate of. I'm going to go ahead and finish doing that throughout the piece where I have the berries. Next thing I'm going to go ahead and mix up, I just have a little bit of that darker Prussian blue. I'm actually using it straight out of the tube and adding little dots as centers to each of those Lavender flowers I had placed down before. We find out that those two colors work really nicely together. That Prussian blue and then the Lavender color. It's nice to have this really dark blue that just pulls your eye through the painting. Starts to make it look a little bit more complete. I'm going to go ahead and add ink in the next step. 8. Painting 1, Step 5: Using Ink: This is where it gets super fun. I am going to add the ink. I've got my ink pen and I'm just dipping it in the India ink, and like I said before, you can use a brush or a pen. I'm going to stick with this pen and so I'm dipping it to the ink until almost all the way in the ink. I recommend, especially if this is your first time using the ink, I recommend just taking a minute and checking out what lines you can get on a scrap piece of paper. Here, I'm pulling my pen across the page just to check out what abroad line looks like. I keep my pen at a pretty nice angle, probably 45 degree angle as I'm pulling it across the page. But you can explore, what does it look like if I hold my pen or brush differently. I'd like to see what a nice scribble looks like, and then once I'm ready, I start adding in these contour lines around my image and I'm using it primarily for foliage, so more leaves and branches. I am using my reference image just to try to get the idea of what some leaf shapes look like. What's nice about a contour line is that you're really just following the edge of whatever you're looking at. I'm following the edge of the leaf. You can think about, if you want some parts of your line to be darker and heavier, and I just added a little scribble into one of my leaves there. Or if you want another part of your line to be really light and think about varying that line weight. You can even go in to some elements that you already painted and do ink on top of them. Especially if I had an area where I had really watery or spotty foliage, I love to go in and add some line work on top of that. Sometimes, I think about using the ink as an extension of this painting that I'm doing and that I've already started. But sometimes, I like to think of it almost as a completely new image that may or may not correlate with what I've laid down underneath. Definitely explore what approach works for you. In the next painting, I introduce what it's like to lay down the ink first and then go in with the gouache second. I find that just changing up some little elements really helps you think about the work differently and definitely creates a little bit of a creative challenge for you. I even, you can see here, just created some little dashes to make just a really sketchy and abstracted flower bud. I'm adding some little petals into the Lavender flowers I had laid down. Definitely going off script. I don't actually usually plan everything that I am going to draw in the ink. I love to just go in and make really basic leaf shapes. Sometimes, I usually put two leaves together. Sometimes, I'll add another line. As you can see, I did in some of my leaves, either to create a centerfold in the leaf or just to create an interesting edge. Here, I'm adding some little berries and stems and really just using this to fill in the rest of the composition and to use up a little bit of space, and also to use this really dark black to pull your eye around. That's one reason why I actually don't use black in my painting very often because I really want to leave it for the ink. I even added a little spot of a polka dots there. I have fun with it and let it be playful and whimsical and just a creative act. I'm going to go ahead and I have just a few more details to add to finish up the painting. 9. Painting 1, Step 6: Adding A Background: So I'm just going to take a couple minutes here and add in some very final details in this image. I think it's looking really great, but one of the things that I really love to do, I really love to add a little bit of a background color. Sometimes I keep it really centralized and just add it in a certain part of the painting and that's what I'm going to do here. Sometimes I add it to the entire background of the painting, and that's what I'm going to do in the second painting. So you can see what the different effects have. I just took one of the colors I used for the leaf and mixed it with quite a bit of white. So I'm still dealing in the same color family. It goes with my image well, but is much lighter and it won't distract you visually. I go through and I just add it into the center background of the image and I actually try not to touch my other elements. I try not to touch the leaves or the flowers. I like to leave a tiny white border if I'm able. I also just went in and fixed, I had made a little mistake earlier with the leaf that goes over the rows and I just took this opportunity to fix it. Now I'm just adding some visual interest to the leaves in part because the reading right now is these really big, so chunky parts of the image that don't have too much going on. So I am using some corresponding greens in order to add mostly dots. You can add lines, just some sort of texture or something to move your eye through. So I'm using a darker green on the lighter leaves and a lighter green on the darker leaves. I am trying to not mix any new colors of green. I'm trying to stick with what I already have because as I'm looking at this, I can see that I already have several different colors and shades of green going on, and I fear that if I make too many different colors here, it will create almost too much of a busy image. So I love to add really contrasting bit here. So I'm adding a very light green that I already had to my darkest element, which is this big dark double leaf in the center. I'm just going to go back through, check everything out, and I think it's going well. So I'm just going to leave it as is and call that one complete. 10. Painting 2, Step 1: Ink: So I'm going to use I have Dr. Ph Martin's Hydrus watercolor. It's nice, bright low watery. It's a liquid watercolor. Then I've got my black India ink. I've also got my ink pen that I am going to use, and I have my size six round brush. So I'm going to start out just doing this watercolor blob. I've got the magenta watercolor on my brush, and I'm just laying it out in the general shape of the flower. It's like a circle, but real wonky there. Adding a lot of water. What I want is to not have it be even looking, so I'm adding more water in one spot. I'm going to dip into my purple just for a little color variation. Other colors that look good with magenta include a little yellow or orange, or like a pure red. So you can kind of think about that. I'm going to make another flower that's the same, just a little smaller. So I'm starting out with just laying some water down. It's pretty pretty dirty water, but like it's already the color I kind of want it to be just going to add a little magenta there. So I have that sort of same color combination, a little purple, the edges there again, not looking for a real even shape or an even use of color. Now I'm going to pull out my ink. This is Black Cat India Ink from Blick. I'm going to use the ink pen, just dipping it in about three quarters of the way into the ink, and then I'm just going to pull it. You can see how I smudge my paper. I just going to pull it across the paper. You can see that when I'm holding it and holding it about midway through the tip there, and I'm just really lightly dragging it across the paper, creating these really sort of wispies, sketchy lines. You can use this to explore the different lines that you can make with it. I think that there's no better spot to explore than in your image. Because it really allows, really conveys rather this sense of freedom and expression. I think that, that really trumps perfection and creates this very interesting image. You can see in some spots, I'm just going to speed you up a little, I'm using really wispy lines. Then in some areas, I'm actually kind of moving through with another contour line right underneath the line that I drew. I do this to create this sense of a fold. I've decided that I want most of my foliage to be ink. You're going to want some elements to be ink and some to be gouache. I decided that most of the leaves are going to be ink although not all of them. What you really want to do is think about how you're going to use this process to pull your viewers eye through the paper around the paper. So I'm just kind of thinking about working in groups of threes. So I have, I'm working on my third little leaf set now. I am just again exploring this a wispy line. I'm not doing much shading, although every now and then I like scribble in the little area to make it darker. You can even see where my ink ran into my wet watercolor created an interesting effect. I'm working on a flower right now. I'm actually starting to hold my pen further towards the tip, and the tip that's further away from the ink tip. So with that's doing, is that allows me to lose even more control. I can't quite control the pen as well while when I do that. I think that it's interesting because you get a different type of line in the different ways that you hold the pen. So I'm just going to go through and add just some interesting spots. I'm adding a little fir branch here. Really basic, just some wispy lines. I'm going to go ahead and finish up and move on to the next phase. 11. Painting 2, Step 2: Adding Leaves: I'm going to work on my foliage now. I'm going to lay out my colors. I'm starting with deep green. I'm going to go ahead and add Prussian blue and pure red, as well as all of green to my palette. Just like I did with the first painting, I find that these colors tend to work out really well with foliage, but you can of course, add any colors you like. Just like with the first painting, I'm going to go ahead and mix the colors. I like to have that really deep bluish green. I add a little blue, a little green, and then usually just a tiny bit of pure red, and I'm going to go in and just use some really light lines in order to create stems, and then I'm pressing down in the middle of my stroke to create that nice broad leaf. My brush is pretty wet, so I'm actually using the gouache in a little bit thinner way here, so it flows really nicely on the surface of the paper. This is turning out to be a really beautiful little branch. This is a simple way to create foliage. You don't have to think much about it and it creates this beautiful fact. I love it. I'm going to pretty much to leave it like that. I love it when my brush dries out a little and I get this crunchy middle to my leaf. I usually leave, maybe it's a mistake, but it's definitely one I like. I'm going to leave that and I went through an adage is some darker, thicker gouache to create a little shadow on top of those leaves. I'm just going in and just like I've been working, I'm dotting this same color around my image, so that it helps pull your eye through. Now I'm back to pretty watery gouache. Every now and then I really load out the paint on my brush and make a little thicker, goofier or gouache. Now I'm on to a little olive, just to have that lighter green. I'm going to make a branch where there are lots of little buds. I broke up the stem there. Sometimes that's just a nice way to create something a little different on your picture here. Don't forget all your stems. If you want some little bud branches, go ahead and put a couple extra stems in there, making a nice broad leaf here. Something I love about this olive is that when you add a lot of water, it really becomes almost a totally different color. It has is super bright yellow undertone to it. Here I'm not doing anything really precise. I just have a lot of water on my brush, and I'm creating these little pairs of leaves that just seemed to pop out from the composition and help move your eye around. You can be really expressive. It's amazing actually sometimes how little information you're adding is. You can just make blob or dot of green or broad line and that might read as a leaf and usually it does. I'm just adding a little bit of the darker green to the Olive just to create a different tone, and I know I just started barely off screen there, but you can see I'm just making a leaf branch that has a different pattern to it and just pulls your eye down off of the page. Like that bursts of color there. It's amazing you can really change the tone of your painting depending on the tones of greens and blues that you use. If you use a lot of darker colors like this, it becomes more elegant. If you're using a super bright like Kelly green, which is almost like grass green, it will have a really different feeling to it. Very light and bright and playful. You can really play around with that. If you use a mint, it might have more of a vintage or more calm feeling. Just explore different color palettes. Yeah, in different ways and making this. I'm just going through and adding brushstrokes. Now we are going to go on to the next step. 12. Painting 2, Step 3: Adding Flowers : We are going to add our flowers to this painting. I'm going to start out with some pale lavender. I'm going to use that shell pink again. It's one of my favorite colors to use in flowers. I just love how light it is. It's gorgeous. I'm going to use the pale lilac. I'll primarily be using that for the chrysanthemum parts, it's a painting. The coral red, and again, this is a really nice complement to the shell pink, and deep yellow. Add such a nice little bursts of color, and especially if you're doing something that you want to vibe autumn, I recommend using some yellows like that. It just adds a great splash and it goes well with the rest of the color palette. I'm going to jump in with this lavender, a bluish purple. I'm going just to make a different flower, and this is real nondescript. I'm starting with this little pyramid center, and I'm going to just make these wispy pedal strokes. I'm using the same method that I've been using for the leaves or I press down hard and then it lighten up a little, except I'm leaving most of the pedal pretty broad. I'm mostly doing it because it looks really different from the other flowers that I've already started laying out in water color. I'm mixing up a little bit deeper blue. I just mix some of my prussian blue in with the lavender. I'm just adding some little strokes to create some movement and a little more definition in this flower and adding lines into the center. Then I'm adding some little wispy strokes just to help give your eye that sense of movement throughout the flower. Next I'm going to go into my shell pink, and I'm going to work on laying out a couple of small roses. I'm just doing that by laying down the layer of gouache and I'm just making a not perfect circle. I'm going to go ahead and make a slightly elongated circle, like an oval to make some rose buds that will be sprouting throughout that painting. This is another small rose that will be open. I'll show you in a little bit how to do some of the details just like I did in the first painting, to really make it look like it's a rose that's opening or give that effect. You can see I picked up a little bit of my watercolor, it's still wet there, and that's okay. I just worked it into the gouache. Ideally, you'll want to wait until each layer is dry, but I tend to attack these all at once. I like the immediacy of that. Some more buds, just plaques throughout the painting. You can see I'm trying to move your eye diagonally with those elements. When we talk about setting up composition, you can see that I've just got your eye moving in a C-shape with the green foliage. It moves in a C throughout the painting. Then I'm trying to have your eye move diagonally bisecting that C with the roses. You can play around that way. Now I'm dotting the yellow. I'm using it just in a really sparse way to create these tiny little buds and a berry's dots that I'm putting throughout the image. Again, like I said before, I really like to have these big elements and then small elements juxtaposed with one another. Creates a great effect. Is something interesting for your eye to look at. Something fun for you to do as you're painting. I like to go off script a lot with these and just put them around the image wherever I think that we need a little splash of yellow. I'm going to go into the lilac and I'm going to make another spiky flower or just a flower with lots of petals that are open. I'm using the same method that I used for that bluish lavender flower. I'm just making a little bit smaller version of it. It may be these broad strokes and I'm going in with just some wispy lines to break it up, add some movement, make it interesting. From here, I'm going to go ahead and add some more details. I'm going to let this stuff dry for just a minute. 13. Painting 2, Step 4: Adding Final Details, and Closing: In this video, we're going to be working on the details of the painting, which I think really make the painting come together and they get thin. For this one, I'm going to be using my number two brush, it's really thin, small brush for some of those details, and my number four brush and both of those are round shape. For the most part, I might dip into my six when I go into the background. So this is definitely a part where you can have a lot of fun with the image and you can add some really remarkable details. You can also add some quirky details to kind of give it this fun feeling. So I'm going to start with a Chrysanthemum and I'm going in with the pale lilac. So it stands out nicely, it's just a really muted color in comparison to that magenta that's underneath, and I'm layering it over the watercolor section that I had painted as one of the first thing I painted on this page. What I'm doing, you can see I'm just moving in these little almost triangular shapes. So I'm making these little triangles, the little arches, and I'm just layering them on top of each other really. I start out with this sort of flower petal shape and then I just start building them on top of one another. You could also think of them as little mountains or something. I'm want to speed you up here because this part took me a little while and remember, it doesn't have to be perfect. I for the most part, used a little bit thicker paint so it stood out really well, but sometimes I let it wear out on my brush to get a little watery. I'm going into this rose. I finished two Chrysanthemums there and I'm just using the coral red color and I have it a little bit thinner on my brush. I have a little bit of water on my brush, and I'm just creating this really circular brushstrokes where I start out by pressing really light, and then I push down harder in the middle of the stroke and then lighten up a little and I just start building them in little C shapes from the middle of the rows out to the edges. What's really nice too, if your brush isn't very wet, you can always add a little bit more water as you get towards the outside of the flower. It's nice to have a sort of loose brush stroke there. Now I'm just going to go through and add just a little line through the middle of these buds, these little bros buds that I have just to add a little detail and a pop of color there. So you can see it's starting to kind of come together a little bit with even just these details. Now, I'm going to mix up a little bit of a darker purple. I'm just mixing my red and blue together and I'm just going to add some dots to that purple kind of wispy flower I made earlier and they're kind of nondescript, but it just adds a little bit of visual interests to the middle of the flower. Because I like to repeat colors in order to kind of tie the whole image together, I'm going to put just almost a little seed pod looking shape, just a few lines that kind of come together in the middle of that blue flower using the same color. Next, I'm going take a little bit of the shell pink and put it on those little yellow buds that had throughout my painting. Now I'm going to go through and pull out some different greens to add details to the leaves and I do this in a variety of ways. Sometimes I just add lines down the center, sometimes add dots to some of the leaves. I love that. I think it makes it look super fun, really quirky and interesting and whimsical, and then sometimes, I will add a little vein to the leaf, a little more detailed vein. Usually add a darker color to the center of the leaf, but on those really dark leaves. I'll go back into the olive green that I had used and use that just to add a little highlight there. This is also a good time. I put a lot of water on my brush when I'm doing these leaves and I'll just add in a couple of watery leaves. Now, I'm going to go ahead and mix up a color for my background. I use a lot of white for this. I'm going to make a really pale like bluish gray color. I have a lot of white. I'm just going to go into the kind of blue-green I used for one of my leaves and just pull out a little bit to kind of mix up this really light neutral gray color. I like to start from the center as much as I can. Sometimes when you're putting this background and it's really nice because if you are looking at the image quickly, your eye might mistake it for fully edge. So just really fills up the space nicely. I don't make it perfect. I actually try not to completely touch all my elements so you don't try to go up and touch exactly along the sides of all the flowers and leaves. I like to leave a little white space and part of that is because it will not be perfect and so it's kind of nice to make this kind of abstract background. I also like to vary the density of the paint I'm using. So sometimes I use a little bit thicker paint and then as you can see here, I'm really loading up my brush with water and almost using the gouache more like a watercolor. I'm just filling in all the edges, sometimes I like to have just some brush strokes that are super evident. I find it really activates all of that white space super nicely. [MUSIC]