Paint a Gouache Portrait: Zorn Masters Study (part 1) | Hajra Meeks | Skillshare

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Paint a Gouache Portrait: Zorn Masters Study (part 1)

teacher avatar Hajra Meeks, School of Watercolor & Wizardry!

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Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (28m)
    • 1. Intro & Supplies

    • 2. Zorn Color Temperature & Tints

    • 3. Wet-on-Dry Dress + Zorn's Style

    • 4. Painting Tighter Detail Shoes

    • 5. Impressionist Red Background

    • 6. Background Layer 2

    • 7. Soft, Lost Edges + Touch Ups

    • 8. Textiles & Wallpaper Patterns Finish

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About This Class

Hey Watercolor Wizards, Hajra here!

Create a historical portrait painting with me in watercolor! This is part of my Masters Studies series, and uses Swedish Master Anders Zorn's oil painting as a reference--painting reference and my sketch are provided on Skillshare as attachments. We’ll be going at a relaxed pace (just a bit faster than real-time to keep it lively!) with lengthy viewing time and instruction, using wet-on-dry painting techniques. Suitable for beginning to advanced artists.

About me: I'm a former university lecturer and Author-Illustrator, and you might know me from my channel of Watercolor and Wizardry on YouTube, or from my Patreon tutorials where I share epic watercolor, gouache, and ink instruction, or more recently from my shared art on Instagram!

Thanks for parking your brushes here and let the epic art adventures begin!


   Copyright free Soundtrack:
 Title : Invitation to the Castle Ball by Doug Maxwell 

Meet Your Teacher

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Hajra Meeks

School of Watercolor & Wizardry!


***UPDATE: I will not be posting further to Skillshare as they treated me in a horribly unprofessional manner; if anyone wants to see more of my art and instruction, please follow me on Instagram and Youtube. My new REAL-TIME, REWATCHABLE, ART CLASS VIDEOS here:

 I'm an Author-Illustrator and former university lecturer who creates and posts nature, botanical & fantasy Illustration. You may be familiar with my Youtube Channel of Watercolor & Wizardry where I post epic watercolor, gouache, and ink tutorials. I brought my in-depth art technique and art history education to some Skillshare classes, and I hope you enjoy the 6 I posted in the past. 

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1. Intro & Supplies: watercolor reserves harsher here today will be painting the first half of a master study of a female portrait from 1900 by Swedish master Paynter Andrew Zorn. I'll be covering how to paint a background patterns and textiles and Wet on Dry Wash and this demo Thanks for Park for your brushes here and lengthy epic painting adventures begin . I have a previous Sauron widow sketch and reference download on Patri on, as well as the free companion video demo on YouTube for my Zorn Widow study from last year . If you're also interested in another Zorn master study in watercolor, check out my YouTube videos and Patriot Post on Wash as well. I'll be using Wash for this demo to emulate the more opaque look of Zorn oil painting Portrait of Elizabeth Sherman camera. Start with a freehand drawing from the reference painting I provide, or you can trace and transfer the sketch I've provided on skill share and on Patri on my sketch transfer and freehand drawing process are not covered here, but all that's available for free on YouTube and some of my videos. If you want that information as far supplies go for this project, I use an HB pencil and soft eraser, a synthetic quarter inch angled brush, a few round brushes with fine points. They can be natural or synthetic. I'm using synthetic nylon here here, a quadruple zero spotter brush for dry brush details, but it wasn't used in part one of this demo. A reasonable cloth towel, which is a green and reusable option for a dabbing your water. A water cup with clean water, a paint mixing palette, a sketch done separately and transferred to your painting surface if you weren't drying on it directly, are just hot or cold. Press £140 watercolor paper wash paint colors and white, black yellow OK and for 1,000,000. You can use whatever wash you have, or you can use the most opaque colors from your watercolor set. I'm using Creator Color. Awkward breaks, the product that is usable as a light, fast wash pan option 2. Zorn Color Temperature & Tints: and, like my other skills, share tutorials. This has sped up only about 2.5 times, so it's still a leisurely pace where you can see all of my brush strokes clearly, but not so slow that it gets tedious or cumbersome. So I'll be doing all the background elements during this tutorial, and I'll start with the furthest back of these elements, which is the yellow wallpaper and also pop in the L, A based color for the fan she's holding while I'm at it. This painting is delightful due to the vivid and pattern elements like the wallpaper, paper, fan carpet, sofa, textile cushion and ballgown fabric. So there's a bunch to observe and paint here and color, pattern and texture. I'm putting in my yellow at mid density so that it's denser and semi opaque, like painting with half and half a second layer will make the yellow fully opaque as needed . I prefer to put down like wash. It made density rather than spackling on the paint so thick that it has a hard time moving on the paper. It's also wasteful to use at full strength because most artists quash colors will be opaque , even at half strength or less, even especially as you add white for tents and black for tones so you can get away with using less paint, even if you want full capacity and washes super creamy and velvety to paint with. So if you haven't tried it before, I'm really excited for you if you're trying it now, and it's a mid yellow that I'm using, mostly because I had it out already on my palette. But you can use a warmer you'll Oakar if you want to match Dorn's temperature precisely once I run out of the mid yellow. All used the yellow color in my palette as well. I make some of the yellow into white paint to create a yellow tent, and I'll be applying that selectively to the gown and loose strokes. This is an Impressionism influenced painting so loose, bold brushwork and pastel colors arm us. The four colors lead white yellow poker for a 1,000,000 and I, every black when used together, have come to be known as the Zorn palette. Zorn used his signature palette often, including on the painting we're setting in this video, so it was a no brainer to use it for my master study as well. The Zoran palate is popular in art instruction because omitting green, blue and violet makes for a very limited color palette with strong value contrast, it's easy for students to learn color mixes when there are fewer colors to mix from. And it's great for learning values because two of its four colors are black and white, which are the traditional value increasing and reducing neutral colors. And the Zoran palette has its own bold, regal ambiance, which is icing on the cake after putting in some of the pale yellow tents. It was a good idea to premix all the tents I saw on the dress into a pallet cause then I could apply the various warm and cool pastel tents more efficiently. Because quashes opaque watercolor, it generally uses white to make tents or lighter colors, rather than just diluting the paint with water. As with traditional transparent watercolors. In this case, that means mixing up white with the other three colors black, red and yellow. I already had a pale yellow tent, so I mixed up a light gray, a light pink and also a light orange tent by mixing the red and yellow together with the white because I re black has a cool bias to it. We actually get a super low intensity blue when it's mixed with the white, and that's kind of cool because you kind of can sneak in some blue or violet if you had some red to that black into your painting with without actually having a formal blue in your palate. And there's no need to apply a white paint in a large area of white in a wash painting. This is an oil paint on texture canvas, and the smooth, flat finish of the hot pressed watercolor paper doesn't need to be hidden, so you are free to use the white of the paper for a larger areas of white. You can choose to use white paint anyway, but I found it's less work to just use the white paper or lightly colored stain paper. If a large area is white or light in color, so here have left the mass mid tone area of the ballgown white, and I'm flying paint in pastel tense and areas of shadow or pattern on Lee. It makes for less work than covering the whole dress with white paint. First, the various past all tense add delicacy and diversity, and this is because the colors or Hughes air different and the various tents, as are their temperatures. The orange, pink and yellow are warmer tents, while the gray is a cooler tent applied adjacent li little chunks. By observing the original painting reference, these colors vibrate do do their hue and value changes and impart a liveliness that will eventually create the illusion of a satiny, lustrous light fabric. It'll take a while. There's a lot of fun to see the interplay between the various color tents developed. I'm applying wet paint on dry paper or wet on dry for this whole study, so the paint on the gown is applied like the pain in the background. The only difference is that the background started with one solid yellow color, while the gown has lots of little strokes of various colors. Never put down a paint section on the gown, and it drives with an edge that I want to look softer. To imitate the painting reference, I just use a damp brush with just a smidge of clean water in it to soften edges with wash the opaque paints. It's more on the surface rather than sinking in as what. Transparent staining watercolors. Soak. Wash edges can be easily softened and lifted when wet or dry, and you'll see me softening dried paint edges with a damp, clean brush numerous times in the study. Eventually, you'll see that just like the black can lighten into sort of a low intensity blue. Mixing the black with the yellow or the red will yield a low intensity green or low intensity violet, respectively. And that's because again, the black has a little bit of a cool blueish vice to it. And those low intensity secondary colors are very subtle but still discernible like See how the gray with a touch of red has a definite purple bias, while a black with the yellow has a definite greenish bias. So there are lots of color mixes that could be created even with the limited Zoran palette of four colors. Depending on the brand and type of black you use, you may see less or more blue bias in your black, which will affect your secondary low intensity color mixes. Some blacks air so dead neutral that they actually have very little or no blue bias. So keep that in mind when you pick a block. Zorn to a lot of his early work and luminous watercolors, though he switched oils in his later career. As I mentioned before, I have a previous master study of one of his watercolor portrait pieces on YouTube. For anyone to view the funeral portrait were studying in. This current demo was originally in oils, but I'm using Gua Sha, which is Maury Cohen. Allergy, friendly and wash can look like oil paint. Transparent watercolor has a luminous stained glass look versus the opaque look you get with wash. For Zorn's palette, I replaced lead white, which is toxic and no longer used with titanium white and my other three color choices of black, red and yellow. Follow his closely. You can use a warm red and a warm yellow of your choice if you don't have yellow car and four million temperature shifts and your color choices will result in logical temperature shifts in your final painted result because already yellow for my set of colors was a bit cooler than what Zorn used. You can see that might. Resulting painting the overall temperature is cooler. Zorn's color temperature for his overall painting was warmer. Zorn didn't always use his or in palette of four colors, but he was known for using it often. Even when he did use it, he still used additional accent colors is needed. I was lucky enough to see his art in person during exhibit in San Francisco, and among them were some lovely paintings with a verdant forest scenes. My favorite was a shepherdess that brought to my little Red Riding hood and all these foresee scenes, had plenty of vibrant greens and showed clearly that Zorn was not solely using his famous black, white red yellow palette and omitting pure grains for all of his work. 3. Wet-on-Dry Dress + Zorn's Style : like John Singer Sargent Zorn was influenced by the innovative color use and distinct breast strokes of the Impressionist. So delicacy capturing of light, clarity of rendering and Impressionist brush strokes were resorts hallmarks, and I'm trying to keep my colors clean and my brush strokes lose to emulate the Swedish master Paynter style. So nobody colors or overdone shapes or fussy, unnecessary details, and the peace isn't gonna look polished and pulled together for a while yet. But we'll just keep observing the reference and applying colors wet on dry to the dress, darkening areas with a second layer. If they dry back to light, the darker areas on the dress will be the flower and leaf pattern still painted loosely, and the darkest areas will be the few cash shadows, like the ones under the waist ribbons. - Way to keep in mind the power of suggestion. The whole time we paint this, Zorn was a master and perceiving how the implication of something is often more effective, attractive and artistic than spelling everything out with scratchy, excessive, tight details, I mentioned how the pale, satiny fabric of the ball gown is lit generously with clean highlights. Zorn paid close attention to using light and shadow decisively and lucidly. His interest and lighting effects resulted in paintings of water scenes with light over water or candlelight scenes, sunlight dabbling in from a small window, the street lamp and cafe window, reflections and other paintings. All of these were opportunities for him to explore light effects, and all this diverse practice made him a master of light and shadow. Zorn also made use of photographs. Toe have references for action pieces like boats gliding over waves, unusual angles and proper facial likeness Is his comfort with using photos probably helped him closely study tricky light and shadow by using a fixed image. He was an artist to use all available tools to help make him a better painter. 4. Painting Tighter Detail Shoes: when I get to the shoes, it's a nice break from abstract strokes to finally render an object more tightly. It's a great little area to draw with our paint. Pay attention to the need structure of the shoot so the feet don't look in properly angled or freaky. This is all still wet on dry with softened edges is needed so plenty of control here, even in a small space. It's a relatively easy set of shoes to pay, since one of them is partially obscured and the front one is at a forgiving angle. Notice how the bottom the shoe has a warm yellow orange glow, so don't just use black and gray paint. These shoes, just like with the dress temperature contrast maybe less vital to realism than value contrast. But it gives the eyes far more color candy and your painting far more emotion and mood 5. Impressionist Red Background: when I get to adding in the base color for the red carpet and the sofa. The piece makes a big jump in pulling together, since the darker value of the red will cause the gown to read more clearly as light fabric . All that red against the white and all that white against the red is gonna pop marvelously . It's just a simple magic of sharp value contrast. E use black for the shadow areas on the rug and also on the sofa, and a black mixes with the red to create a nice, warm dark brown. Like I mentioned before, all this red imbues an aura of decadence, maturity and sensuality. Very suitable for a wealthy women's portrait. The Zorn palette is a warm, bold and passionate color scheme, so that's definitely something to consider when you're choosing it for various subjects, you have to ask yourself, Does your subject match that mood? So, for example, it wouldn't work for a portrait of a newborn baby or nursery artwork, or at least most nursery over. You could try to make it work by reducing use of the pure red and pure black, thus limiting your color choices further in an already limited color scheme. But it would still be easier to use a more delicate and high key color palette for lighter and more innocent subjects. Instead, - since I'm applying the wash at maximum mid density, I'm gonna need to go back over the entire area with a second pass of red color to achieve fully opaque and vibrant color. If you need a surface toe, look mottled and patchy, leave it alone. After your first pass of mid density, quash color is going to get an uneven look to it. But for smoother surfaces with deep color, like the rug with a sofa, a second layer of color is gonna do that for it. 6. Background Layer 2: and the pattern on the rug is so abstract that all it needs is some random shadow strokes. Keep in mind that some of what I'm trying to deliberately copy from Zorn was just random loose brushwork on his part. So we just have to match. Exactly. And it would actually look stilted if we try too hard to match every weird random shape. Exactly. Instead, as long as we get the personality of the original random areas and brushstrokes, it's gonna be a good study of Doren's technique, and that goes for the shadows on the rug or loose patterns and shadows anywhere else. 7. Soft, Lost Edges + Touch Ups: once I get the red background to the color and value intensity that I want, I returned to the gown to touch it up and polish it. And that consists of softening selected edges around the gown, where it needs the red background for a better visual cohesion, and also adjusting final colors and values on the gown as needed. Now that the light gowns colors are framed by the darker red value discrepancies in the gown, we're gonna stand out way more sharply. The darkest Harry isn't any painting are excellent value gauges for the rest of your painting, so I ended up boosting the color on the shoes as well as on the gown in several places, as a result of comparing my values in the background to the values on the dress. 8. Textiles & Wallpaper Patterns Finish: when addressing the white ish pattern on the sofa. It's the opposite white paint situation, as we had with the gown. The gown was mostly white, so I left it the white of the paper and added color shadows and patterns over top. The capture, on the other hand, is mostly red, so I did the red Midtown and the black shadows first, and then I'm gonna come back with the white pattern. Highlights last, making sure to keep the patterns loose and simple in keeping with the rest of the peace. All the elements in this tutorial were painted using what I call the mid tone method, where the local majority color, which is usually of mid value. He's laid down all over a shape, first with shadows and then highlights. Following in selective sections, I discussed mid tone tiling and Greece I painting methods Ferg Wash and watercolor in YouTube videos and on patri on. If you want more information and I actually have to sculpture videos demo ing gross, I and I will be doing more in the future that cover tiling, so hopefully that information will be on skill share soon, too. - Cushion is a second the last thing left to finish painting the background elements, and it was done similarly to the dress because it's mostly white. You guessed it. I left the massive it the pair paper to stand in for the white mid tone. And then I came back in some areas with the pill yellow or pink tent as shadows. For some definition on that cushion, it's still lose an impressionistic Lee paying to desert cushion. So we're not gonna do too many details. And for some of the Andrews, you'll notice that I did paint the cushion further out with white paint where I felt like you needed extending. You can always do that with a larger white object. Add little tendrils or fringe, or for in white, at the edge of a shape, using the white paint, even if you haven't used the white pain for the rest of the ship. Finally, a return to where I began to finish the pattern on the yellow wallpaper s Itanium whitewash to daven blossom clusters and use the black and red mix to make a warm brown for their branches and leaf implications. As with the rest of this piece, this was more wet on dry. Not only is this more controlled for patterns, but wash really can't be glazed or applied wet and wet after the first layer because it's thick, opaque and sits on the surface so water or watery paint over it is just gonna make it lift and become muddy. It has to be applied wet on dry, at mid density or thicker. If clean, successful layers are desired after the first layer, and top players will mostly or completely cover your lower layers. And that's a shift in thinking from transparent watercolor recon glaze and use wet and what techniques for several layers that are all translucent. - So in summary, washes watercolors sibling because they're both pigment with the same watercolor binders. Thus they have very similar handling. Set up and clean up put washes of paint pigments and traditional water color is transparent and translucent pigments, so there are differences in how these two mediums appear on the paper and how they layer and how they use White Wash will be more opaque, dance and creamy on the paper and will not take well toe watery glazes over the first mid density application. It will also use white paint, toe lighting colors and a tense and for highlights, while transparent watercolor can skip white paint and just use water to dilute colors and the bear paper for white areas and highlights. And it's a personal choice to still use your bare paper as a mid tone for larger white made tone areas on a wash painting. If that makes it easier for you, and it certainly does for me. Well, wizards, I hope you enjoy the Sauron study using Zorn's limited palette As much as I did. Stay tuned for the second half of this tutorial and skill share. Where will leisurely paint and discuss head, face and arms and finish this wash master study, please like and comment on this tutorial and check out my website dashboard with all my online platform links on one page, including my skill sharing patron to support my art creation and instruction. And I have recently updated my Red Global Shop for art prints and finally made my Etsy shop active to sell original art there. So I hope you check both those out. Thanks for perfect Russia's here and wishing your epic art adventures Uh huh,