Paint With Me: Acrylic and Gouache Miniature Paintings - Gift Idea | Alessia Sketchbook | Skillshare

Paint With Me: Acrylic and Gouache Miniature Paintings - Gift Idea

Alessia Sketchbook, Visual Artist

Paint With Me: Acrylic and Gouache Miniature Paintings - Gift Idea

Alessia Sketchbook, Visual Artist

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6 Lessons (23m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Your Class Project

    • 3. Acrylic on Mini-Canvas

    • 4. Gouache on Paper no. 1

    • 5. Gouache on Paper no. 2

    • 6. Final Thoughts

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About This Class


This class is all you need for your Christmas presents and/or filling your sketchbook!

Join me for some cosy, wintry landscapes painting on a miniature scale. We'll use acrylic and gouache paint on canvas and on watercolour paper.

I'll guide you step-by-step through the creation of 3 tiny little artworks, from sketch to final result. I also talk about tips and tricks on how and why I make certain choices when I'm painting.

This class is for everyone who enjoys using water-based paint, and to create something new and exciting.

You can follow along using the same images I've used, or you can get some inspiration from your own references and imagination.

So, get your brushes out and let's paint!

Meet Your Teacher

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Alessia Sketchbook

Visual Artist

Top Teacher

"Coastline". Show at Kensington and Chelsea College, London


Hello, I'm Alessia and welcome to my little art-corner!
Here you can be yourself and express your creativity, whether you're a beginner or a skilled artist.

Here on Skillshare, I focus mainly on Procreate (iPad Pro), and small size drawing and painting, all things you can do from the comfort of your home. I'd love to inspire you and share what I think it's important to improve your art skills. Having fun is the priority! My promise to you is to never stop learning and to give back so that I can communicate the same passion that I feel about art.

Keep scrolling down if you want to know... See full profile

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1. Introduction: Hi, I'm Alessia, and I'm here in my London studio today to show you how you can create some beautiful miniature painting using some acrylic and gouache paint. With small paintings, you can produce so many of them in a short period of time. Then you can use them to surprise people because of the size of it is going to show your painting skills or just your creativity, and I think it makes a very personalizable, thoughtful gift. For this class, I chose a wintry landscape using some reference image that are ready for you to download if you want to follow along. Is for everyone who loves to paint on a small scale, whether is on a sketchbook, or small canvas, or pieces of paper. You can then is this artworks to gift or to collect them, or just challenge yourself to do something different as painting on a really small scale can sound intimidating if it's the first time that you do that. I'll guide you through the process, from the sketching to the final result. All you need is some paint, a brush, and some surface such as watercolor paper or canvas that you can use to paint on. Whatever the size of the surface that you're going to use, you can always cut it to size or frame it using some tape as I'm going to do in some of these processes. I'll take you through the creation of three small paintings. One of them is going to be on a small canvas that is mounted on a magnet and this is going to be using acrylic paint, and the other two are going to be on watercolor paper using gouache paint. You will love this class if you enjoy painting with water-based paints. I love you to join me, and I'll see you in the next lesson. 2. Your Class Project: For your class project, use a reference image or work from your imagination to produce a small painting that can be either on canvas or on paper using the process that I'll show you in the lessons. As I mentioned, you'll find the images that I've used so you can download them and use them to follow along in the process or to just have some inspiration for this class. When your artwork is ready, you can share it in the community down below here on Skillshare and you can tag me on Instagram @alessiasketchbook to have an immediate feedback about your work. 3. Acrylic on Mini-Canvas: Welcome to the first painting of this class. We can start by setting up our supplies. In this case, acrylic paint on a magnetic canvas that are found in my local shop. I always use Unsplash to choose a reference image from, because it's free and it's easy to navigate. I'll be painting this beautiful winter landscape. You can find this image in the resources, there you can download it and follow along if you wish. Let's start with a pencil sketch of the main elements; the mountains, the trees, and the sky. I like mixing the colors on a disposable surface such as kitchen foil. It's easy to prepare and I don't splash paint everywhere when I clean it up. I chose a light blue block color for the sky, although the original photo has small values to it because my use of a reference is just for an idea, an inspiration, or a mood. I rarely try to achieve a carbon copy of it. It's just not exciting to be unless I'm studying a new technique and I want to master it. When I'm working with such a small surface, it can become tricky to handle. You might need to switch position as I did here. We can start working on the trees now. I find it useful to break down the main colors in it, to choose how to arrange them, and make the painting my own. We mainly have a few shades of dark green and black here. You can see it's dark when the tree is casting a shadow on another tree or itself because of the position of the sun. We can tell by the light that it's either dawn on sunset as the mountain in the background looks pink. There's not going to be much light hitting the trees where they close to each other. In general, my aim was to build a contrast between green and black to give some volume to the painting. Let's talk about brushes as they make a difference in the final result. I don't love very thin brushes. You've seen the brushes at some point I use them, but I prefer bigger brush with a very good tip. The tip of the brush, it's your precision tool and besides gives you more or less capacity to hold paint in it. The smaller the brush the more you have to go back and dip into water and paint to let it slide down on the surface of the canvas smoothly. Here we have our first miniature painting on a magnet. Now, you can let it dry and then decide if it's going to live in your fridge in your room, or in someone else's space. 4. Gouache on Paper no. 1: For this second painting, we're going to use gouache and water color paper. If you don't mind rough edges, you can cut the paper with your hands. I cut one with scissors as well to show you how you can achieve different results through the shape of the paper. For this painting we're going to look at this cabin in the woods all covered in snow. As before, we create a quick sketch of the main elements: cabin, trees, and snow. You'll have to spend long doing this, you can achieve details through the paint later on. Also bear in mind that gouache is more transparent than acrylic, so you need to be very gentle with your marks or it's going to show off from underneath the paint. It's funny if you like that, but if you don't want just don't press very hard when you're drawing and use a very hard pencil such as 2H and above. Soft pencils tend to bleed as soon as they touch the water in the paint. When using gouache, I like to start with a flat color and then alter the shades and details later as I'm doing here with the front of the cabin. This painting does a lot of white. It's natural to ask yourself if you want to leave the page blank or paint white on white. Here I'm painting the trees leaving the space for the snow. But my preference for this painting is to paint white on white because I can create some volume with the paint itself by building a thicker layer of it and simulating the snow. It's a personal preference, but usually it shows whether it's canvas, paper, or paint if you don't cover it. I always suggest paint it unless you want to achieve that specific unfinished look on purpose. You can now add some details. I'm using black even though it's not in the original picture. It's a fast way to add shadows and give life to objects. I'm going to add some more white to simulate the snow and some grays as well to make it look more realistic. That's how our second painting finish. This will make a nice bookmark or a very small print to frame with a big amount in MAT. 5. Gouache on Paper no. 2: For this last painting, I want to show you how you can use any leftover paper to create a mini painting in a short time. I want to point out that the process that I'm showing you is about 1 1/2 times faster than in real life so that I can show you with more examples. But this wouldn't take really long at all even in real-time. Once again, with the theme being winter and woods, I chose another cabin image with different colors and moods. It's more of a monotone picture than a winter one, but I really liked how remote it looked. By now you already know the steps. First, we create a sketch to guide us, then we fill in with basic values, and then last, lay out the final details. I leave you now to the painting so that you can enjoy watching the process. I'll see you in the next and final lesson. 6. Final Thoughts: Thank you for joining me in this class. I hope that you enjoyed creating these small paintings, and I hope it's going to give you some ideas, especially for birthday or Christmas gifts. Please feel free to upload pictures in the section below, I would love to see your work. I would also love to hear your feedback about this class as my aim is always to produce new content that is really engaging, enjoyable, and useful too. Please leave a review with your thoughts about this class and suggestions for next ones. If you didn't know, I also have a YouTube channel that you can subscribe to. You find that on my profile. I also have an Instagram account where I post a new painting every day and new challenges along the way. I look forward to your comments. Thank you again for joining me in this class, and I'll see you in the next one. Bye bye.