Paint with Me: Vintage-Inspired Botanical Illustration Using Mixed Media | Kendyll Hillegas | Skillshare

Paint with Me: Vintage-Inspired Botanical Illustration Using Mixed Media

Kendyll Hillegas, Artist & Illustrator

Play Speed
  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x
10 Lessons (1h 13m)
    • 1. Intro

      2:01
    • 2. Inspiration & Sketch

      6:34
    • 3. Watercolor -- First layers

      7:24
    • 4. Watercolor -- Detail

      7:20
    • 5. Watercolor -- Greenery

      8:20
    • 6. Colored Pencils -- Large blossom

      10:31
    • 7. Colored Pencils -- Small blossom & Greenery

      11:57
    • 8. Gouache

      8:04
    • 9. Finishing touches

      4:59
    • 10. Wrap Up

      5:30
31 students are watching this class

About This Class

Come along with me as I paint one of my favorite flowers, the dahlia in a realistic, vintage-inspired style using mixed media.

326596f0

Together, we’ll look at inspiration and use it to create a composition. Then, you’ll have a bird’s eye view over my shoulder as I create the piece, and hear me describe my process and the decisions I’m making in detail at every step. I’ll also explain the concepts and techniques behind what I’m doing, so you’ll be able to take those skills on board and apply them to your own projects down the road. 

This class is a good fit for you if: 

  • You like lots of demonstration and learning by example
  • You’re at an intermediate level, have experience drawing, and feel comfortable working from a reference image on your own (class will not cover drawing basics)
  • You understand foundational principles like composition, value (light/dark, shading) and saturation (color, intensity) 
  • You want to learn to improve your skills with mixed media techniques
  • You want to learn to adapt the look/style of vintage botanical illustration to fit your own process

ee5253c6

It’s also good to keep in mind that the piece I created for this class took over 10 hours and was painted across the span of several days. That being said, you don’t have to spend that kind of time to get something worthwhile out of this class.

All styles and approaches are welcome, and experimentation and adaptation of the skills I use to your own process is encouraged!

b78bb7b4

After completing the course, we’ll review a distilled version of my process so that you can decide what techniques you want to apply to your own botanical illustration in the class project. 

Transcripts

1. Intro: Hello, my name is [inaudible]. I am an artist and illustrator focusing on realistic mixed media illustration. My work has been used on clothing, in video games, extended magazines like Real Simple and Milk Street, and of course on packaging, both in the US and abroad. I also have a YouTube channel where I talk about some of my daily experience being an artist and insight into both skills-based stuff and industry know-how. Of course, I have been teaching here on Skillshare just for the last couple of months, where I'm able to go more in depth into some of those same topics and give a really rigorous overview in my process and share some of what I know as a working artist. After I published my last class, I put out a call on social media asking you all what topic you wanted me to cover in my next class, and by far, the most commonly requested topic was flowers. Flowers are at one of my favorite things to paint, so I'm super excited to be offering this class. In this course you'll come along with me as I create a detailed, vintage inspired botanical illustration. I'll start the piece looking at inspiration and reference images, and you'll see me develop the piece layer by layer explaining the process as I go along. You'll see how I use watercolor to get down those initial layers, colored pencil to develop detail, and gouache to tweak the piece and fix any mistakes that I make. At the end of each lesson, I will give verbal and on-screen recaps to make sure you get a good sense for the important takeaways. We'll spend the bulk of the course on my actual painting process. This class is probably best suited for those who already have some experience drawing and feel comfortable drawing on their own from a reference image, and who understand basic concepts like composition, value, and saturation. After completing this course, you'll have a detailed in depth perspective on the techniques that I use to create this piece, and in the class project, you have the opportunity to translate those techniques to your own style, to create your own vintage inspired botanical illustrations. Let's get started. 2. Inspiration & Sketch: To get started, I am in my Pinterest account on a Pinterest board that I've created that has some inspiration for Vintage Botanical Illustration. I've just gathered these here, mainly choosing ones that I liked. I didn't really have anything in particular in mind. I was just pinning things here that caught my fancy and that I appreciated. So I want to look through now and see what I can pull out that common elements in some of these images that is attractive to me, and it's going to help me create a piece that really evokes that style. The first thing that I noticed as a common element, and this is no big surprise because it's something that I like in all of my work, is the high level of detail. So that will definitely be something I want to include. I also appreciate how they're a bit stylized. So some of these images, especially ones like this, are realistic, but they are more like the artist's interpretation of realism. I also like how they've included leaves, but it's fairly minimal. If you're looking, for example, at a actual photo of a Dahlia, the leaves would be just taking over. There'd be tons of leaves, but the artist has decided to include a few selections, a few images of what the leaves look like, but hasn't let the leaves takeover. I also really like how there are buds, we're looking all at flowers here. So there are buds and different angles, basically showing the flower at different stages of growth, and that's something that I see as a repeated theme through a lot of these images and that's just an overall theme in a lot of scientific illustration in general. Some of these even go a lot further like this clover one here has not just the different stages in the plant and the flowers and the leaves, but it also has the seeds and the different anatomical parts of the flower, and that's something I find really interesting as well. I'm not sure if I'm going to do it on this piece, but I do like that element of the different growth stages, having all of that included in one piece. Then maybe just because it's the fall when I am making this class, but I'm also noticing that I'm really drawn to the ones that have a warmer color palette so I think I may try to do something in that range as well. So that's what is drawing me in terms of the inspiration. So that being said, I am ready at this point to move on to the next phase, which is creating my sketch based off of the inspiration I found in my Pinterest board. So keeping in mind that overall aesthetic of the vintage botanical illustration, I'm starting out with a really rough freehand sketch. I am just using Apple pencil, and iPad, and the program procreate, but you can do all of this with a regular piece of paper and a pencil. I'm just adding in the different elements that I know I want the composition to include the stems, the leaves, the flowers at the different growth stages, and moving them around, and tweaking the angles just to make sure I can get that type of vintage botanical look that I'm going for. So here is the really rough compositional sketch. This is going to serve as a guideline for me when I'm selecting my reference photos and deciding which images I want to use to base the illustration off. So now, I'm opening my photos library and I'm going to just flip through some of the photos that I've taken over the past couple weeks that I think will work well as reference images for this piece. Overall, these are all taken in the same lighting, they are taken from the same plant or set of plants. So I know that they are going to work well together. Then back into procreate here and my rough compositional sketch, and I'm just dropping different photos in and erasing the background to isolate just the element of the photo that I want. I'm working my way through finding the front-facing blossom, the backwards-facing blossom, all of the different elements that I know I want and I know I'm going to use, and I'm flipping them around, or mirroring them whenever I need to make sure they work in my composition. So I'm just working my way through the piece, finding all of the different elements that are going to make up the reference image. If you are just doing this with pencil and paper, I do that all the time as well, and it's totally fine. Actually, most of the time, I don't create this reference where everything is in one, I'll just have all of my reference images in a place where I can easily get to them like on my desktop or in my photos library, and I'll just bounce back and forth between the different images. But I wanted to show you guys a version of this process just in case it would be useful for you. So that being said, if you're doing this the old-fashioned way and you're just doing a piece of paper for your compositional sketch, that is totally fine and you can still make this work really well that way. So here's my finished sketch. It was created in procreate and I referred to the rough compositional sketch for the overall placement of the different components and the shape and the sweep of the stems, and then I referred to the images as my references for the flowers and the leaves in the more detailed elements of the composition. So once I'm done, since I did create mine digitally, I have printed it out onto two sheets of eight and half by 11 paper and then typed them together because my watercolor paper is actually 11 by 15, and then I'm using my Dbmeir light pad to transfer the sketch onto my watercolor paper. So takeaways from this lesson, my main goal was to create a sketch for the illustration, evoking that vintage botanical scientific illustration aesthetic. So I started out by looking at inspiration and taking note of what I liked in the inspiration and the specific elements that I wanted to evoke in my own piece, and then using that, I came up with a really rough compositional sketch just out of my head, not looking at any particular reference image. Then to take this sketch at the next level, I used actual reference images of real flowers to give me that sense of realism along with the stylization. 3. Watercolor -- First layers: To get started here, I'm just getting my table all set up, I'm ready to go. I've got some water on my right-hand side and my palettes and I've got the watercolor right here. This is what I'll be using for the first few layers of the painting, it's a brand called Dr. Ph. Martin's. It's their hydrous line. I'll be using a warm red similar to a cadmium red, a cool red similar to alizarin, a quinacridone, magenta, a warm yellow similar to a cadmium yellow and a cool yellow and then lastly, viridian green. Then I'll also be using my liquid well palette and then for brushes, I'll be using two brushes, I'll be using this size four round brush by Princeton, it's the Neptune line, it's a synthetic watercolor brush, and a size zero round brush by Isabey, this brush has a really, really fine tip, so it's great for little details. I'm going to start out by mixing up a neutral purple, I want something that is going to read as a really subtle shadow and it's just help me to mark out the initial form and shape of the piece. I'm going bit by bit, adding some dropper falls of the watercolor to my palette wells. Some of the color that's already dried on the palette, I am able to reactivate and reuse. One of the reasons I love these watercolors so much is that once they are dry on the paper, they don't reactivate, but when they're on the palette, they do so reactivate with water, so it's the best of both worlds. I'm just adding more dropper falls where I need it and I'm trying to keep them in the same wells that I've already used those colors in before to avoid things from getting muddy. I'm just adding a tiny bit of that warm yellow that you just saw there to my purple color to help tone it down and make sure it's not too intense. I'm going to come in a little bit closer here in speed it up so that you can see what I'm doing more closely and this whole time I'm just going to be using that same color purple doing the same thing, trying to mark out the initial shadows and the overall form and value of the piece, so nothing is really going to change, I'm just using the reference photo as my guide, trying to follow along and build up the shadows where I see them. If you're new to watercolors and you're wondering about this, the purple is really light because I've watered it down a lot, it's probably mostly water and very little paint. There's no white that's been added to it. The purple is a mix of the alizarin color and a tiny bit of the viridian green, and then a little bit of the warmer yellow to tone it down. I'm moving on to the second flower and again I'm using that same muted purple, this flower I'm going to be a little bit more heavy handed with it because the flower, as you can see in the reference, has more color to it. It's a darker purple base color and then it has just some light accent, so I'm going to cover most of this one with this muted purple color. Then the last little thing that I need to use this color on is the outside of the bud, the little brush that hasn't opened up yet, has just a hint of that purpley color, so I'm just going to mark that off with my brush and some of the water color here. In general, this is how I approach it, especially at a earlier phase of a painting. Whatever color I'm using, I try to use it throughout the piece. This just helps avoid having it dry or having to wash my brush out and remix things and it just seemed the simplest way to do it to me, but if you prefer to work in complete an area and then move on to another area, that works well to. People do both approaches, I just tend to prefer the overall approach first. At this point, I am switching brushes and switching colors. I have mixed up what is basically just a really, really watered down version of mostly the cool yellow with a tiny bit of warm yellow mixed into it and then again, almost all water, there's very little pigment. I'm switching to my size four round brush. This brush, it's obviously bigger, so it holds a lot more water and it also doesn't have as fine a tip, so I'm happier to mop it around and use it to blend things, because I'm not worried about munching the nice fine tip at the end. Yeah, I'm just adding the yellow to the center of the flower because I see quite a bit of it there in the reference and then to some of the exterior petals. Now, I'm hopping on over to the other flower and I'm going to wash it over the entire flower. It's going to really tone down the purple a lot, because yellow is the compliment of purple. But that's okay because this flower is going to get much darker later and a lot of the light areas of this flower, to me, at least in the reference look like they have a good amount of yellow in them, so I just want to do the wash over the entire blossom. Now I'm switching colors again. I have mixed up a really, really light watered down, cool pink. Use the alizarin crimson. I think I also used a teeny tiny bit of some of the dried-up cadmium red that I had on my palette just to warm it up slightly, but still it's overall a fairly cool pink, really water down and I'm just going over all of the center petals of a flower. Now, at this point I'm going to switch to a much warmer pink and a little bit darker, a little bit less water down. This is pretty much just a straight up cadmium red and I want to add some warmth to that outer pedals. In the reference image to me, it looks like there's quite a lot more warmth in those, so the cadmium red is going to be a perfect fit for that, since it's a really warm red and I've switched back to my size zero brush, the finer brush. Since this is a little bit more detail, then I want to make sure to stick just to this area and I'm starting to add those first few actual little colored details. There's tons more to go, but usually it's good to use a more detailed brush for them so that I don't end up with pigment in places where I don't want it. Quick little recap from a watercolor part one. The goal was to create a rough color and temperature map, like a color sketch of the main subjects, which in this illustration are the two bigger blossoms. I talked about my materials in my setup and I went over a little bit of very basic color mixing and throughout the lesson I added initial light layers of color and washes to both of the blossoms, keeping it really light in working gradually. Overall, I tried to keep the color palette minimal and to use the same colors over and over again wherever they occurred throughout the piece. 4. Watercolor -- Detail: Switching colors again, but still with the same more detailed brush. Actually I'm going to bounce back and forth between the detail brush and the number four brush to do some blending. But I'm using that same muted purple that we started out with in the beginning, but less watered down version of it. I'm starting to add some more dimensional shadows, so some drop shadows underneath the petals. That's just going to really help illustrate the form and the shape of the blossom and make it start to look more three-dimensional. I'm going to pop in here with a muted gold color. This is mostly the warmer yellow, the cadmium type yellow but it's been toned down a bit with a little bit of the muted purple. I wanted it to read like a more of a mellow golden rod color. I'm using this in the center, some of the interior petals again to try to illustrate the shape and give that sense of dimensionality. I'm just going to pop back and forth between that more muted yellow and the more muted purple. I'm going to speed it up a little bit here as I just work my way throughout the flower, trying to illustrate the form and the values. You can see I usually keep whatever brush I'm not using in my non-dominant hand, which helps me switch back and forth between the two of them really easily. I tend to put pigment on the main brush that I'm using, which in this case is the size zero brush and then if I need to, I will use the size four brush to help soften the edges and blend it out. You can see this is just a really gradual development. I'm going layer by layer, bit by bit to try to work up to the right value and right color. In addition to paying attention to the values, the darks and the lights, I'm trying to pay really close attention to the temperature. I want to have the right side of the flower, the shadow side read a lot cooler, and the left side of the flower, which is the lighter side, read much warmer. In addition to having a dark and a light, having the value clearly differentiated, having the temperature differentiated with the cool and the shadow and the warmth and the light is going to help it to have that really luminous, glowy feel that a flower in the sunshine does. Now, I'm going in with a bit of a darker color. I've added some of the cadmium type red to the purple color to deepen it and warm it up. I want it to read as a shadow, but I don't want to get too dark, so I'm trying to increase the saturation a little bit and help to have that lit from within look. I'm continuing to add that throughout the flower, the left side of the flower, the lighter side. I'm using that same color, the reddish color that I used in the dark area, but I've watered it down significantly, so it's just not nearly as intense and it reads as a much lighter color. Now, I'm getting a little bit bolder with the shadows. This is that same muted purple from the beginning, but with even less water in it now. I'm using it to try to illustrate the really darkest dark areas of the blossom and try to help it read as more three-dimensional. I definitely have further to go on the main blossom here but I'm actually going to switch at this point to the backwards facing the second blossom and try to get some of the dark value down on that. That's going to really help me see how dark and how light I want to keep the main blossom since values are all relative based on what's around them. I want to get this flower to a closer pointed completion before I keep moving on the second one just to help myself avoid getting too dark or too light in any area. This purple here is a bit different than the initial purple. I've made it more or less the same way. It's the alizarin with a little bit of viridian green and a tiny bit of yellow, but it's not as much yellow, so it has quite a bit more saturation and I haven't watered it down nearly as much because I want it to be much darker. I'm going in trying to follow that structure of the leaf. Any of the areas that look like a vein, which you can see in their reference, that lighter veiny area I'm avoiding those completely and trying to just stick to the areas that actually look purple to me. At this point, I can tell that I, even though I didn't add as much yellow to the purple, it's still a bit too muted and actually needs to have a bit more of a saturated vibrant feel. I'm going to go in with substrate, quinacridone, magenta. I haven't cut this with anything else. It is a bit wider down of course, but it's not been desaturated with any yellow, so it is truly bright and vivid and it's really helped this read more like the color in the reference image. Just working my way across the petals here. Going back and forth between those, the more muted, darker purple and the quinacridone. At this point, I am going to start adding a little bit of a watered-down version of that quinacridone magenta to the tips of the outer petals on the main blossom. This isn't really represented in the reference image. I can see some evidence of it in the color, but I'm definitely amplifying and going beyond what's in the reference image. I've decided to do that because right now the main blossom is like very soft, very delicate and this supporting blossom, the smaller went off to the right, is going to be much darker and much more vivid. Even though the size difference helps balance them out, since the soft one is much larger and it has more detail in it, I don't want them to feel imbalanced in terms of the color. I do want to bring a little bit of that darkness in that saturation into those outer petals. Now, back to the smaller blossom with those same two colors, that dark muted purple and the quinacridone, and I'm just going over and over until I feel like I have the value and the color mostly right. Quick review of what I went over at this phase. My main goal was to develop the value and the color in both of the blossoms. I gradually added darker and darker values and more and more saturation and complexity to both of the blossoms, which allowed me to begin creating a sense of form and dimensionality, added some initial anatomical details to the flowers like veins, and overall I used a small brush when I was adding the new paint and a larger softer brush to feather out the edges where necessary. This is especially true if I was adding a really dark or a really saturated color to an area that didn't have it before, an area that was initially really light. 5. Watercolor -- Greenery: It's finally time to switch to some of the greenery. To get started, I am doing a really basic, very light yellow, green color. This is made by mixing mostly the cooler yellow, the Hanukkah yellow is what it's called in this brand, and just a teeny tiny bit of the viridian green, not even a full dropper's worth, but I've put the dropper in its own little compartment in the palette and just take in my brush and gotten a little tiny dab of the green and then mix satin with a yellow. The viridian green is a really, really strong color, so it can easily take over something that is not as dominant, like the Hanukkah yellow. I've mixed that up and done a watered-down version. You know the drill at this point, those first layers are always watered down, so mixed up a watered down version and I'm just going over all of the greenery with it. The greenery is actually going to have a cooler tone at the end, but some of the undertone, what shows through in the wider areas does look warmer to me, so that's why I'm doing a really yellow green. I'm going to add some more detail and more value development to the leaves. I've mixed up a cooler green, this green still has quite a bit of a warmth in it, but it's definitely cooler than we started with. This is the same cool yellow base with a little bit of viridian, obviously more than I started with initially. Maybe about a dropper is worth to four droppers worth of the yellow, so one green for yellow. Then I've also added in a little bit of the warmer yellow, the more cadmium type yellow, and this just helps knock down some of the saturation and give it a little bit more of an olive green feel. I wanted to look really realistic, and to me, the green that's in the reference image is definitely a cooler green, so this should work well. At this point I'm mainly just following along the structure of the leaf, the only area that I'm going to try to avoid getting any pigment on is the main vein that runs up the center of the leaf. All the leaves have lots of veins, and I could get super, super detail about the leaves if I wanted to, but I want most of the focus to be on the blossoms and the overall shape and composition of the piece. I'll add some more vanes later with colored pencil, but for now, I just want to make sure that that center vein is clearly blocked out, and the easiest way to do that is to avoid putting any of the darker green on it. I'm just working my way through avoiding those center veins and adding the green across the whole surface of the leaf. I'm also paying attention to the overall values of the leaf, so the areas where it's a bit darker, I'm putting more concentrated, less watered down version of the green and the areas where it's lighter, I'm watering it down more, but it's all the same green. I'm just going to speed it up here as I move along. This is all the same color green, I'm just varying how watered down it is, the intensity of the color based off of what I see in the values in the reference image. Now as I move on to the little bud, I'm using that same green and I'm doing the same thing. I'm trying to keep the veins in the center of the leaves, free from any of the darker green pigment, just to keep them nice and bright. Then the darker areas of the bud I'm going in with really dark uncut version of that green, not watered down at all. Then the lighter areas, I'm watering it down quite a bit just to help differentiate the value and help me create a sense of forum and dimensionality. Now this leaf in the reference image is actually facing backwards, so it looks lighter to me than the other leaves. I'm going to try to create that sense in the illustration as well, so I've watered down the green quite a bit more and that means that more of the yellow is showing through. I'm probably going to have to work harder when I use colored pencils later on to balance it out and get it to read as cool. But for now I still just want to avoid getting too dark with it, so I have the green pretty watered down. Now I'm going to add some of the green to the top of the stem, the base of the flower, I don't know what that area of the flower is called, but the green part of the flower, I'm going to start adding some more of the green there and trying to describe the shape of some of those little petals. I am concentrating on the green towards the center and then fading it out in a gradient towards the outside, because that's how it looks to me in the reference. Now I'm moving on to the main stem, as the stem comes down from the flower, it looks like that same green to me, so I mostly have just kept that green the same and brought it partway down the stem. Now I've mixed up a bit more of a muted version of it, so I've added more of the cadmium type yellow and then a tiny bit of the cadmium type red, and this has helped create a really muted greenish brown. I'm trying to fade that into the greener part of the stem, I want to create a really smooth gradient's, since that's how it looks to me in the reference image. This is also going to help me create that really graphic stylized look that I'm going for, I want it to be realistic, but I also want it to have that vintage stylized feel. As I get closer down to the base of the stem, I'm getting darker and darker with that brown, which just means I'm adding less and less water. When I get further up the stem towards the green part, it's more watered down so it's more transparent and helps me create that gradient, and then as I get closer to the base, I'm getting darker and darker, so less and less water. Now I'm going back into the bud with a little bit more of the quinacridone trying to illustrate that pinkish area of the blossom, the bud. Then I'm also using some more of the green, that same green color, just a darker version of it, again, trying to get the values right, get everything as it should be before moving on to color pencil. The last thing I want to do with water color here is just cool down this leaf, that's the backwards facing leaf, since I made it really light, which it should be according to the reference, it showed a lot more of the yellow undertones. In addition to being really light to me, it looks really cool, so I've added just a little bit of really, really watered down viridian. Viridian on his own is a very blue-green, so it looks really cool to me. I've just watered it down about as much as possible and I'm just doing a thin wash over the top of that leaf. With that, I am finished with the watercolor portion of this painting, so to review what I did at this phase in the painting, still using watercolor, my main goal was to develop the value, the color, and the form in the greenery, so I started out by talking about my approach to mixing colors for greenery. Then I worked in layers with a warm green underneath and a cooler darker green on top. I in general avoided the really small details like the veins with the darker green, which allow me to keep those areas light which will have more contrast and just make it easier to build up the detail in the colored pencil layer. 6. Colored Pencils -- Large blossom: I am just getting ready to move on to colored pencils. I'm going to be using Prismacolors soft core colored pencils. I have a big box of them. I like to just go through and choose the colors that I think I'm going to use throughout the course of the piece. I don't know for sure which ones I'll use, but I'll just start choosing based off of the reference image, the ones they think are most likely to be useful for me. Here you can see I started with some pale pinks and a couple of deeper pinks. I have some peachy ones and some more rosy ones so spanning the spectrum between warmer colors and cooler colors. Then I'm doing the same thing with the yellows. Some lighter yellows, very light yellow like a cream color, and then more medium yellows. Again I have some that are more towards the cool end and some that are more towards the warm end. Also adding in a couple of purples and some gray neutral purples and then some olive green colors. Actually I guess it's not a true olive green, more like a raw sienna color, but a really browny color with a slight greenish undertone. Then I've got some darker colors, some darker purples and magenta. These are all going to be used just very sparingly in the big flower and then more liberally in the small flower. Then I've also gotten a true bright orange. I think in Prismacolor, it's just orange. I think I'm going to use this a little bit in the light blossom. It's not really present in the reference, but I think it will look nice as an accent color. I've just added on a couple other more orangey yellows after that. I'm not sure which one's going to work best. I am giving myself a couple to choose from. Then for the greens, I have mostly more muted greens. I have marine green and kelp green. Then for the lighter part, I have a sap green or actually no, I think it's spring green, but it's just a bright yellowy green. I want to mostly have the greens lean towards the cooler end but there are some warm areas, so that's why I'm opting for the spring green. Then I'm adding in here on the left some of the lighter tones. These will be used to give a sense of reflection and waxiness on the leaf. I have jade green and celadon green, both of which are very cool and lean more towards the blue end of the spectrum. They're also pretty muted, not very saturated at all. Then finishing off here with a super light green and some white and then I also threw in a dark brown very thin there on the end on the right-hand side. This I think I might use for some really tiny details. I'm not sure yet though. Then I also have a black colored pencil here. I hardly ever use black, but since I'm going for that more vintage look, those pieces do often have quite a bit of black in them. I think I might use some black in the shadow areas of the stem. I just pulled it out in case I need it. But we'll see how much I actually end up using it. Getting started here, I'm going to start on the larger main blossom first, just like I did when I was going through with the watercolor. I'm starting off mainly using a really light pink and some white to try to give some definition in detail to the edge of the blossoms. Then I'm also using a very muted almost toke color, but it has quite a lot of purple in it. I think in Prismacolor. I think It's called clay rose. It does read as purpley but it's very muted, like I said, almost topper gray. This I'm using in the shadow areas. I'm bouncing back and forth between these, trying to describe more of the shape and the value in each of the individual petals. Overall, I think the darker area of the flower is going to need a lot more development. That's where I'm concentrating most of my effort. The lighter area of the flower, I feel like I'm going to have to be careful to not overwork. I have to be careful to not overwork any of it. But it's easier to overwork the lighter area when you're working with this media since it's never really as easy to add the light back as it is to add more dark on top, even though I'm going to be probably using some opaque media later. It's just better to leave it as light as possible if you're wanting it to be light in the end. Just saves time and it has a fresher more luminous look than if you add tons of white on top. I'm going to speed this up here a bit so that everybody doesn't fall asleep. That basically I'm just doing what I talked about, trying to deepen the value if it needs to be darker, to lift up the value if it needs to be lighter and then trying to add more saturation and more detail where it belongs in, throughout the course of the blossom and just using that same palette that I picked out at the beginning. You'll see me, burping back and forth between. Several different colors here. Now, since I'm working on a hot press paper, the paper is very smooth and I'm not really needing to do any blending to get a smooth look. If I were working on a more textured paper or if I wanted an ultra smooth look more than what I have here, then I could do some blending with the colorless blender or with Gamsol. But for now, I think since it's a smooth paper, I'm feeling pretty happy with how it's coming along just with the pencils. Right here I'm going in with the brown very thin. If you're not familiar with them, very thins they're still made by Prismacolor. But they're a much harder core than the soft cores. You can get a really sharp tip on them and the tip stays sharp a lot longer than it does with regular Prismacolors. I'm basically just using that to help me define some of the edges of those petals. Going to speed it up again. This whole time as I'm developing the detail and tweaking the color and pushing the value one way or another, whether it's darker or lighter, I'm making pretty much all of those decisions based off of the reference image. I'm looking at the reference that you see here and I'm deciding. Is this area need to be more pink, or does it need to be more yellow or does it need to be darker, does it need to be lighter. Every time I have to make a choice like that, I'm just looking back at the reference and trying to get what I am creating on the page to look as much like the reference as possible. That's like 90 percent of what I'm doing. Then 10 percent is me deciding that, I see how it looks in the reference, but I want it to look slightly different. May be that's not the exact split. Maybe it's 80 percent of what I'm doing is paying attention to the reference and then 20 percent is making my own decisions. But with the point I'm trying to get across there is that the reference image is super important. If you're watching and wondering, how is she doing that, why is she making that decision? Pretty much most of the decisions are being made based off of what I see in the reference image. That will be definitely an important lesson to take away in terms of creating your own work. If you're wanting to create stuff that is more or less realistic. Really just paying close attention to the reference and developing a habit of looking at the reference every time before you choose a color, every time before you lay it down. Consulting that reference image to make sure you're keeping close to reality or if you are moving away from reality, that you're doing it with intention and with some a plan. That other 10-20 percent that I am making up as I go along, it's still informed by reality because it's informed by what I have seen in other flowers or what I've seen in real life. But for example, one thing I have decided to amplify that I don't see as much in their reference is this darker, more orangey pink in the outer blossoms. I want to do that because I'm trying to mess around with the temperature in the flower. Not mess around, but be intentional with the temperature. I want to have the lighter side be warmer and the darker side be cooler. But within that, I have some cool areas in the light parts and some warm areas in the dark parts. The reason I'm doing that back and forth is that it really creates this beautiful sense of vibration in the color. It just makes it look so much more alive and glowy and dynamic, the way that a real flower does. In this lesson, my goal was to use colored pencil to further develop the values, the color and the detail of the main blossom. You can probably get that that's a theme in this overall process is just a gradual development of those three things. The value, the color, and the detail throughout the subject. In focusing on the large blossom initially, I selected my colors based off of the reference image. Actually, I started out by selecting all of my colors for the entire piece, but I started working only on the large blossom first. I added definition and detail to the large blossom gradually and I tweaked color and saturation as I went along, all of this helping to describe the form of the larger blossom. When I did decide to depart from the reference image in my color choices, I did it strategically, keeping in mind the overall aesthetic goals of the piece and making sure that the color story would serve those goals. 7. Colored Pencils -- Small blossom & Greenery: All right. So at this point I am moving on to do a little bit of work on the second flower, the purple flower, the darker flower. I'm starting by redefining some of those veins. I'm using a really soft color, a soft yellowy creamy color. I don't want to go in with pure white because that would be too harsh. But I feel like when I look at the reference area, the base of the flower that still has the green to it. The edges of that seem to blend into the lighter part of the pedals to me. I'm trying to connect some of those lighter yellowy vein sections to the greenish section at the base of the flower, and also trying to warm it up a little bit with some yellow areas. Then I'm gradually starting to add some more pinks to the tips of the flowers. Then starting to work in some darker, a pomegranate color, a magenta color, and then a really dark purple to define the deeper darker areas of the leaves. I'm doing a, excuse me, not the leaves, the petals. I'm doing the same thing that I did with the watercolor where I'm paying pretty close attention to the anatomy of the flower and trying to preserve those little ridges, little veins. Since that's part of what's really distinctive about Adelia. If you are a fan of this genre of work, the more scientific, vintage inspired botanical illustrations. You'll notice that that is really a key feature in this style of work. An artist may really stylize something and it may not look perfectly realistic like a photograph. But they are very careful to include those archetypal features, so the overall shape of the leaf, the overall shape of the petals, and any distinctive features of the petals. Those things are all really important if you're wanting to create that scientific illustration vibe. You can be a bit more expressive and stylized, but you do still have to keep coming back to those anchors that really let the viewer know what they're looking at since that gives it that sense of being, more of a scientific illustration or something either botanical textbook. All right. I'm speeding this up again here. I'm just hopping back and forth between the darker purples, that mid-tone pinks, and then those lighter more muted yellows for the underside, the veins in the undersides and moving across the flower trying to develop the form and the values and the color. All right. Now at this point I'm going to start developing some of the stems and the greenery. The stems, I want them to be fairly simple because the flowers are so ornate and I want the flowers to be the focus of the piece, but I do still need to add some detail around the edges to make them read as three-dimensional. Here I'm starting to develop the far right-hand leaf. This is the one that in the reference image is facing backwards. It has a very cool and at the same time lighter, look than the other leaves do. So I'm going back and forth between celadon and jade green, and little bits of yellow here and there. Even some little bits of white to add dimension and highlights. Just trying to keep it really delicate, really soft, really cool, but at the same time, make it read as three-dimensional. All right. Now I am adding some of the same outlines, that same development to the main stem. Even though I was able to create a gradient with the watercolor, it definitely still needs some refinement. I'm going back in with the different greens that I'm using, and some of them are more saturated, cooler, lighter ones and then some more muted kind of brownie greens. All right. At this point I am going to add quite a bit more detail and most of the detail to the little bud, the dahlia bud. This one has a lot of yellow in it to me of all of the green elements. This one is the most yellow, so I'm trying to really get a sense of that purple area that does look a bit darker than the rest of the bud. But I also want it to look really lush and green. I'm definitely amplifying that purple color a bit more than I see in the reference image. Mainly because I want it to feel consistent with the other two floral elements, and it's way down here, in the bottom part of the composition. This area is also green. I wanted to bring some of that purple and some of that pinky color down from the top of the composition. This is that 10 to 20 percent where I'm making it up as I go and make use of decisions about how I want it to look, the support, the style and the overall piece instead of just reflect the exact reality of the reference image. I'm going in here with dark green, That's the prismacolor, that's their name for the color dark green, which isn't actually any darker than the other green that I was using, the one that's in my left hand. But it is a lot more saturated. It's really dark and also quite saturated. It has a nice waxy luscious feel to greenery. It helps develop that. I'm going into some of the darker parts of the bud with that and then highlighting it with some white, some pure white. Right now I'm moving on to developing the detail in the other leaves, the leaves on the left-hand side of the piece under the larger blossom. These ones, I actually feel I got the value pretty much where I want it to be with a water color. Which is really nice because I'm going to be able to add some of the lighter greens on top to create that sense of shine and waxiness. Then I'll just need to do the darker greens in a few areas. As I said when I was working on the watercolor, I had been intentional about leaving that center vein untouched because that is fairly prominent and that's one of those archetypal features that I was talking about. I want to have that really showcased. I don't know if you can see here, but if you look really closely into the leaf, the section of the leaf that connects to the stem, right in the center of the vein, there's a little round area. You can see that in the reference image, and to me that's also one of those distinctive elements. Those two areas, the center vein and that little connecting round circle thing. I'm trying to keep both of those lighter. Then aside from that, I'm just going across the surface of the leaf with the more muted, lighter, cool greens and then trying to give a sense of some of the veins with the darker greens. There's so many different ways to paint and draw a leaf. You can be really exact and include all of the veins like every single little detail or you can do none at all or you can make the veins dark or you can make the veins light, and really there's tons of approaches to take depending on how realistic or stylized you want it to look. I'm going for fairly realistic, but also pretty stylized. I don't want to have all the veins showing but I do still want the leaves to look dimensional. So wherever I see a vein in the reference, that can indicate a little bit of a fold or some shape and dimension to the leaf. I'm using, rather than drawing an exact line, I'm using the darker color to push down the down areas of the forum and the lighter colors to bring up the up areas of the forum. I'm doing that across the course of each leaf since each leaf has its own shape and its own dimensionality. All right. I'm going to speed it up here and I'm doing that process of the pushing down the darker parts and the pulling up the lighter parts, following the general anatomy of the leaf, but not really adding any specific super detailed veins. All right. Here I am continuing to develop the stems and trying to treat this stem the same way that I treated the stem coming from the main flower. Trying to connect and soften that gradient. Now working on the final leaf, doing the same thing that I did with the other leaves. Further along I get with these, I am letting myself out a little bit more in detail. A few of the more visible veins, while still continuing to try to rely mostly on describing the shape and the form. All right. Now at this point, I want to really give the stem a more graphic, stylized feel. I am going to add some black to it, just to the shadow areas, to the underside, just to try to help it have that more of vintage lithograph feel. While I am using the black, I'm trying to be really careful to not overdo it and still just use their really dark greens, the greeny brown colors wherever I can. I'm going to speed it up here as I continue to go over other parts of the stem, bouncing back and forth between the greens and browns and just trying to get all of those values and colors, right. All right. At this point everything is more or less where I want it with the colored pencils, but I am pulling back a little bit and giving you guys more of a bird's eye view as I go across the entire piece, just trying to catch any of those last little details that I wanted to add with colored pencil. Tweak some color in a few areas, and just make sure I'm getting more of that sense of detail and dimensionality as I wrap up with the colored pencils. All right. At this point I am all done with the colored pencils. I am going to add some gouache next, and we'll talk about what gouache is in that lesson and why I'm using it. But yeah, I'm done with colored pencils for now and I probably will do some more at the end after the gouache. I'm not entirely sure at the point that I'm creating this. But for now that's it with colored pencils. All right. Time for a quick recap once again. At this phase of the painting, my main goal was to add form, definition and detail to the smaller blossom and the greenery. So is the same goals the last lesson I just was focusing on a different area of the painting. I've continued using mostly cool greens in the leaves just as I did in those upper layers of watercolors, so I want to really keep going in that direction, and I've balanced out the smaller blossom with a larger one by making it darker and much more saturated. I've continued to be conscientious about including those archetypal and distinctive details of the subject, so the shapes of the leaves, the veins, the shapes of the petals, all of those things that really make it look like Adelia. 8. Gouache: Welcome back. At this point, I have gotten the illustration to a fairly high level of detail. Often in my process, I'll do mostly just watercolor in colored pencil, and don't even ever really do the gouache step or if I do it's just in really tiny details. But for this illustration and for this skill share class in general, I am keeping this super authentic and I'm just taking you guys along with me in this process and letting it unfold naturally. I didn't necessarily plan on including gouache for sure, but at this point I feel the illustration needs it in order to help me to develop a more accurate level of a value of lights and darks in the illustration. Then I also think that there are some areas that I have gotten maybe a little bit to neutral in the colors, and I need to push it back more towards saturated. I think most of the work is going to be done in the main blossom and I'm going to be using a couple different brands mainly Holbein acrylic gouache, but I also have Winsor Newton. I think gouache that I'm using, the Holbein gouache is acrylic based which means that it does not reactivate once it's wet. Some gouache even once it's dry, you can add water to it again and reactivate it, the same as you can with certain types of watercolor, but with acrylic base gouache once it's dry it is dry. The reason I'm using acrylic base gouache is because I'm going over the top of colored pencil. There is still plenty of surface area that hasn't been touched with colored pencil, but the surface area that has been touched with colored pencil has a good amount of wax in it. I wouldn't really be able to go over the top were something that was just water based like watercolor, it would just pill up on the surface and weren't really sink in. But since the acrylic gouache has a plastic or a polymer binder to it, that allows me to put it over the top of colored pencils. I'm just working my way across the surface with this white initially trying to get the values up to where I want them. Again, I'm just being really honest and transparent with you guys about my process, what happened in I feel like the right side of the blossom is that I got a little bit too neutral and maybe a little bit too dark. I'm trying to lighten it back up a bit and I think I'll also add some more saturation. Part of the reason I am being really transparent with you guys about what my processes like at this phase is that, I'm hoping that one of the things that this class can communicate is that working in mixed media, can be a really great way to deal with some of the curve balls that can come when you're making art. It can allow you to tweak things and pick out a media that will solve the unique problem that you're dealing with. In this situation for me, that was gouache and they needed something that would stick to the color pencils and be fairly opaque. While it might not have been part of my initial game plan, it is what ended up happening and that's pretty accurate for how I create pretty much every piece. I'll start out knowing, yes, for sure I'm going to use some watercolor or watercolor pencils, and then I'll add on colored pencils. I pretty much always do those two things, but then when it comes down to the final layers, I might just do a few little details with a Sharpie paint pan, or I might do something much more extensive like I'm doing here with the gouache. I might even do something a little bit different like a wax pastel or an oil bar. Basically, I just let the piece tell me what it needs, and for this piece in this situation, it was telling me it needed gouache, so that is why we are doing what we're doing. At this point, I am starting to mix in some color and I try to add some warmth back to the inside of some of those pedal areas, and these did have yellow in them but I just felt like it wasn't quite saturated enough. Moving on to the gouache as supposed to the colored pencil allows me to cover up some of the neutral, more muted colors that I had down there with a more saturated colors. I could have just gone over the top with the more saturated colored pencil, but the colored pencils just don't have the same level of capacity as the gouache does. I'm speeding it up again here, just continuing to add that warmth, that golden yellow, the color that I'm using is again a cadmium type yellow. At this point, I have put a little bit of magenta on my palette and mixing that with some white, and a tiny bit of a cooler yellow to try to create a cooler pink tone that's going to go on the outside of some of the petals on the right-hand side of the blossom. Again, I'm just doing the same as that same goal in mind of increasing the level of saturation, and I'm also trying to make sure that I keep the petals that are on the right-hand side of the blossom. Keep the pink in those petals at least, more of a cooler paint to really help it read as a shadow. I'm also taking this opportunity to add in some structural details of the petal. In the reference image, I feel like I see a stray pianist to certain petals. I'm allowing myself to get a bit more graphic with the application of the paint here to try to really communicate that effect. Now, at this point I'm going to twist my paper again and I'm going to transition to working just a little bit on the smaller blossom. Now, this doesn't need a whole lot, but I do want to add a few areas of again, that more intense color in the tops of the petals. The areas that are really catching the highlight. I feel like I got a bit too desaturated, so I want to add something that is not very light but very saturated and somewhat light at the same time. I've mixed up basically just the magenta and lightened it a little bit with the white, so it is very saturated. Hasn't been really knocks down at all with any complimentary color. I'm just hitting some of the highlights in this blossom and I want to really reserve most of the pure white for the big blossom because that is so much lighter overall than the little blossom. Having a color as a highlight here in the smaller blossom is going to really help me do that. I'm just finishing up here with a gouache, I have pretty much just only used it on the two blossoms. Mostly, primarily as you have seen on the larger blossom with a little bit on the smaller blossom, but haven't really used any on the leaves or the greenery and that is because those are really the only places that I feel like it was needed. I'm going to stop now and let it dry and then after this, I will move on to finishing touches and getting this piece wrapped up. A quick review. My main goal in this phase of the painting was to use gouache to correct the color and value that had gotten a little bit off kilter in the large blossom. I talked about how using mixed media can be useful for that for correcting mistakes, and then I used a white acrylic based gouache to lighten some of the areas that had gotten too dark, and then I used colored acrylic base gouache to add saturation and to tweak the temperature. 9. Finishing touches: We are in the home stretch here. I have done layers of watercolor, layers of colored pencil, and then we've just finished up the layers of gouache that I used to tweak the values into the saturation level of the blossoms and since the gouache has somewhat of a different texture than the rest of the media. I'm going to now go back in over the gouache with some colored pencils just in very small amounts to weave together the texture of the colored pencil layer and the gouache layer and make sure nothing stands out or calls too much attention to itself. I'm just starting out with magenta colored pencil and a lighter pink colored pencil and softening some of the edges of where the white gouache meets the other colors in the petals of the blossom. Just working my way around anywhere I see really hard edges or anything that really pops out and just softening it a bit with the colored pencil. Now the reason this works, the reason I'm able to do colored pencil then gouache then more colored pencil on top is because I'm using an acrylic gouache. I want to emphasize that point again. I know I talked about it in the last lesson, but if you're using a non acrylic base gouache, the gouache isn't going to have the same sticking power. Acrylics are great for sticking to all different types of surfaces and really holding on as long as there's something for them to grab hold of. As long as there's some paper texture still showing through. But trying to do this on top of a non acrylic based gouache would potentially results in the paint flaking off when you're using the pressure of the colored pencil. Another great thing about gouache, this is all gouache, not just acrylic based gouache, but it has a very matte texture to it. The acrylic base gouache in particular has that matte texture. You can easily use colored pencils on top of it since they have something to stick to as opposed to like a really shiny acrylic paint. I know some people do use colored pencils on top of acrylic paint, but for me I've always had more luck with gouache. At this point I am switching to a Sharpie paint pen. So what I'm doing here is I'm just adding a little teeny-tiny white highlights anywhere where I see a really bright highlight that I want to read it as truly white without any coloring. I'm going in with the Sharpie paint pen and this is the fine tip version as well. They have a medium and a heavy, I can't remember whether they call it a heavy or bold, but they have three different sizes. This is the smallest size of the water-based paint marker. As you can imagine, most of those highlights are going to go on the brighter side of the lighter blossom. That is where I'm focusing a lot of my effort initially. Then I'm going to work my way down adding some of those highlights throughout the stems and on the edges of the leaves. The leaves I want to have like a really nice almost juicy or waxy look. The Sharpie paint pen is going to be great for adding those little tiny opaque white highlights that really give the leaves that fresh, juicy look. If I ever do lay too much down, I just really quickly dab it with my finger and that takes off some of the pigment and knocks down some of the intensity. Helps it read as a little bit of a softer highlight. I'm just wrapping up here and I think that's it. I think the piece is all done. For the finishing touches, my main goal was to blend the gouache, the layers of gouache that I had added in the last section to blend those into the colored pencil and to add a few final highlights. I use additional colored pencil to soften those edges of the gouache and to help keep the piece looking cohesive so there were no hard obvious edges. Then I talked a bit more about why it works to use acrylic gouache on top of colored pencil, and why you can use colored pencil on top of acrylic gouache. Then finally, I used some white paint pen to add just really small little final highlights. Here's the finished piece. I'm really pleased with how it turned out. I feel like it strikes a good balance between stylization and realism and evokes some of the things that I really enjoyed about the vintage botanical illustrations that we looked at in the beginning, in the inspiration section. Here's a scan of the illustration as well. Coming up in the final lesson, we're going to talk about the class project, how to execute that, and other things to wrap up the course. I will see you in that final lesson. 10. Wrap Up: Welcome back. To wrap up this course, we are going to discuss the class project. Before we do that though, I do want to mention one disclaimer really quick, and that is that the creation of this piece, the one that you've just seen, the complete in the class actually took over ten hours. Even though that process was condensed down into under a couple of hours of footage, and even that is a long class for Skill Share. The reality is that that style of work is time-consuming and requires a large commitment of time going in. I mentioned that because number 1, if you decide that you do want to do something in that style and it's taking you a long time, I don't want you to feel like you're doing anything wrong. It takes me a long time too. It's just how it goes if you want to create that more detailed realistic look. The other reason I mentioned it is that you don't have to do it that way. If you want to take either a simpler approach conceptually, where you do a subject that has maybe only one or two elements instead of multiple elements like this one I did, that could make it quicker. If you chose a different style of flower, something like a tulip that didn't have a ton of all those little petals and so many details, that would also make it quicker. Maybe your styles is just different. Maybe it's not as realistic or not as detailed, and that is all totally fine. We all have our different styles, our unique styles and unique ways of approaching things. But regardless of what perspective you are coming to you with this, whether you're going to try to do it exactly the way that I did it or If you're going to try to tweak it and change it for your own process, the steps to create your vintage inspired botanical illustrations are basically what we went over in the class. I'm going to give them a quick review right here. Number 1, you want to start out by gathering your inspiration. You can use Pinterest for this like I did and make a pin board. You can do it physically, you can cut out images from a magazine and glue them to a poster board, or use Google images and save them to your hard drive. Whatever way works for you to gather some inspiration, go for that. Once you've gotten everything gathered, you spend some time looking at inspiration. Sit back and take a look over everything that you've pulled together, and ask yourself some questions about, what inspires you about those pieces? Why do you like those pieces? What are the specific elements that drew you to them or that made you find them inspiring and look for where you see common themes and that inspiration coming up over and over again. I like the shape of the leaves or I like the colors in this one. I like how this one includes the cross-section, whatever it is, those things that keep drawing you into the pieces that come up over and over again. Those are the qualities of inspiration that you want to try to evoke in your own composition. Once you have that list, create your rough composition, draws from those themes that draws from the inspiration that you've found in these other images. Especially if you want to work realistically, the important step is to gather some reference images. I use my own images because I prefer to control it. But you also can look online, find images that way. If you don't have your own pictures of photos, you could also try going to a flower shop or a garden center and takes pictures that way. The important thing about this step is that, you are pulling together references that actually work within the composition, and the style that you have set out to make, then create a sketch based on the combination of your compositional layout and your reference images. Then transfer that sketch to your art paper and use watercolor or marker watered-down acrylic, whatever your medium of choice for those early layers is to create an under painting. Then you can add more detail with colored pencil as I did or with another media, if you prefer another media. Lots of people do just 100 percent watercolor. For Botanical Illustration that can work really well. You can also lay a markers over watercolor. Just make sure that if you are going to combine different media that you'll do some tests. Watches first to make sure they lay well over one another. Finally, once you feel like you've gotten the piece pretty close to being done, take a step back from it for a day, and then come back and look at it with fresh eyes and adjust and make any tweaks. If you've seen any mistakes, take the time to fix those, especially if you invest a lot of time in a piece. It's worth doing at the end just to take it that last little bit from from good to amazing. Now as you may have already guessed by everything else that I had been saying in this section, you should feel totally free to modulate these steps however you want to tweak the process however, best suits your needs. If you want to skip a certain step or use a different media and take a different approach, you should feel free to do that. Whatever you do, I hope you will take the time to share your work in the class projects. I do my best to look at every single project, I love seeing what you all make and I know your classmates do as well. If you want to share your work on social media, please feel free to tag me. I'm at KendyllHillegas on both Instagram and Twitter. I love sharing student work, I love retweeting it and including it in my insta stories. Lastly, please feel free to leave any questions you have in the class discussion section, and if you're able and you have the time, I would appreciate a class review. Thank you so much for taking my class. I really hope it was valuable. I hope you enjoyed seeing my process and learn some new things and some new concepts to take from that and apply to your own artwork. I am so excited to see what you make.[MUSIC]