Painting with Gouache Made Fun & Easy! | Yasmina Creates | Skillshare

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Painting with Gouache Made Fun & Easy!

teacher avatar Yasmina Creates, Artist & Creativity Cheerleader

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

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

Lessons in This Class

12 Lessons (1h 8m)
    • 1. Trailer

    • 2. What is Gouache?

    • 3. Picking Your Paints & Other Supplies

    • 4. Basic Properties of Gouache

    • 5. Flow & Opacity

    • 6. Layering

    • 7. Blending

    • 8. 3 Spheres Example

    • 9. Advanced Tips & Tricks

    • 10. Wet in Wet Play

    • 11. Live Example

    • 12. Yay! You Finished! :)

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About This Class


Gouache is such a versatile and fun medium. It can act just like watercolor but has the added benefit of being opaque so you can layer it like you would oil or acrylic paint. But as cool as it is, it’s often overlooked because it can be tricky to master. That’s where this class comes in!

It’s built for absolute beginners but is jam packed with information to make gouache not only approachable but fun! You will learn everything you need to know to paint gorgeous work with this magical medium and will have plenty of examples that will show you how to find your own special way of working with it.

We’ll go over:

  • Picking Paint and Other Supplies
  • The Basic Properties of Gouache
  • Flow and Opacity
  • Layering
  • Blending
  • & Even Advanced Tips and Tricks!

There will also be a fun wet in wet exercise to practice what you learn and play with the paint and a final live demonstration that will show you how to use everything we learned to create a beautiful finished piece. By the end of the class you should have the confidence to make your own gouache masterpiece!

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s dive into the world of gouache the fun and easy way! :)

Meet Your Teacher

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Yasmina Creates

Artist & Creativity Cheerleader

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I strive to make every class the highest quality, information-packed, inspiring, and bite-sized.

Creating is my biggest passion and I'm so happy to share it with you! :)


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1. Trailer: Gouache is such a versatile and fun medium. It can act just like watercolor, but has the added benefit of being opaque. You can layer it like you would oil or acrylic paint but as cool as it is, it's often overlooked because it can be tricky to master. That's where this class comes in. It's built for absolute beginners, but is jam-packed with information to make gouache not only approachable but fun, we will learn everything you need to know to paint gorgeous work with this magical medium and we'll have plenty of examples that will show you how to find your own special way of working with it. We'll go over everything from picking paint and other supplies, the basic properties of gouache, to flow and capacity, to layering, blending, and even advanced tips and tricks. There will also be a fun wet and wet exercise to practice what you learn and play with the paint and a final live demonstration that you can follow along with, that will show you how to use everything we learn to create a beautiful finished piece. By the end of the class, you should have the confidence to make your own gouache masterpieces. What are you waiting for? Let's dive into the world of gouache, the fun and easy way. 2. What is Gouache?: What is gouache? Gouache is one of the most versatile mediums out there. It can be used like oil or acrylic paint when you layer it, like in these paintings by Lena Rivo. She likes to use the paint thicker and looser. She achieves beautiful textures and blended gradients. Her gouache work could be mistaken for oil or acrylic paint. It can be used like water colors when you water it down, like in Vanessa Gillings' work. Her gouache pieces can be easily mistaken for watercolor, but the bigger grains of texture give it away. It can be a combination of the two ways of painting like in Audra Auclair's gorgeous work. Notice how beautifully she blends the colors, which gives an oil painting effect, but she also uses it like watercolor, especially in backgrounds. The result is super magical and surreal. All of this is done with one medium, gouache. This is all possible because gouache is almost the same as watercolor, which is finely ground pigment and water-soluble binder. The only difference with gouache is the pigment is now ground as fine, but there is much more of it or it has white pigment or chalk added in, which makes it opaque. For this reason, it has a nickname of opaque watercolor. This makes layering easy, and if you paint with it watered down, you'd get the same effects as watercolor. You can use any technique you normally would with watercolors. Gouache will act almost exactly the same, but unlike watercolors, the fear of making mistakes is greatly diminished since it's easy to paint over any mistake you make. Since you can layer it, you have the freedom to paint from light to dark or dark to light. Also, gouache tends to sit on top of the page instead of going within, so you can paint it on almost any surface you want. Since it's opaque, you can also paint it on dark or tinted papers. Gouache can also be re-wet at anytime in a dry painting because it is water-soluble, which makes it easy to rework a piece even after its dry. But if this is something you don't like, you can always use acrylic gouache which has all the same properties of normal gouache while it's wet, but once it's dry, it's dry forever, which has its ups and downs. For example, you cannot re-wet the paint on your palate to use it again, and you'll have to scrape it off to wash it, but layering is much easier and you don't have to worry about reactivating the layers below. We'll get into the details of this later. One of my favorite things about gouache is the fact that it dries matte. This makes it easy to see when your layers are drive by just checking if it's still shiny, and it makes it easy to scan or photograph. It also dries fairly quickly compared to other mediums, so it's perfect for us, impatient types, but there are drawbacks like with any medium. Gouache painting tends to be very fragile. They can easily be scratched or re-wet, but this is avoided by storing them properly or putting them in a glass frame. Also, since they can be re-wet, it can be tricky when layering. You can easily activate the layers below if you're using too much water, but this can be remedied with practice in more layers, but the drawbacks aren't that many. You just have to practice and learn the kinks of the medium and get better at it. Just like watercolor oil, acrylic or any medium out there, you just have to put the timing. The trick is to keep trying and to learn by doing. It's just a skill like any other, so be sure to implement what you learn in this class by doing it yourself. My hope is by the end of the class, you'll have tons of techniques under your belt, not only understand the medium better, but will be confident in doing your own thing with it. Let's start with the class and keep in mind that everything I say can be adjusted to your liking. Your goal should be to play, have fun, experiment, and find your favorite way of painting and working with this magical medium. Let's jump in. Let's start with supplies. 3. Picking Your Paints & Other Supplies: If you've painted with watercolors before, you probably already have everything you need to get started at minus the gouache paint. If you're starting from scratch, don't worry, we'll go over everything you need. There are many things you can save money on, but I don't recommend doing so with the paint. It's better to only start with a couple of colors of high-quality gouache paint, and then you can always add more to collection as time passes. There a couple of reasons for this, but the most obvious ones are the cheaper paint tends to be less opaque, more streaky, less vibrant, and harder to handle in layer. Also, if you plan on working thicker with lots of layers, it tends to crack more than higher-quality gouache. As you can see here, the differences are very noticeable. You can see how much more vibrant the higher-quality gouache is and how streaky the lower-quality gouache is? It's so much easier to apply even color with the higher quality gouache, in my opinion, gouache is already hard to master. Don't handicap yourself a cheaper paint if you can help it. But if you already have cheap paint or that's all you can afford, go ahead and paint with it, but upgrade as soon as it can because it will make your gouache experience in lean times easier. If you're under budget and you don't mind mixing your own colors, my recommendation is to get the whole being primary set of five gouache paints. It comes in normal and acrylic gouache, so you can pick whichever works for you. Other amazing brands like Winsor & Newton, M.Graham do sell primary sets, but they use colors like red, yellow, and blue, which as you might have seen in my watercolor color mixing class, these are not the true primary colors in traditional media. To mix the broadest range of colors like pink, purple, and turquoise who need cyan, magenta, and yellow. This is why I highly recommend this set. As you can see, I can mix any color you can imagine super easily and it comes with a very handy chart they can use to premix your colors every time. But Haldane is not the only great brand out there. If you can find cyan, magenta and yellow in a different brand, you can use them as well. But if you don't care about those super bright colors, you can use red, yellow, and blue. Here is a list of repeatable and high-quality brands. Winsor& Newton, Shmincke, Daler Rowney, M. Graham, Royal Talens, DA Vinci, and even Turner gouache very high-quality and can be bought at a cheaper price than the other paints I mentioned, and you find it on sale in the U. S. Most notably Jerry Artarama sells a for very good price. There are also a lot more brands out there and depending on where you live, you will have different ones available to you. If you get artist or designer great gouache and do your own research, you should be fine. The third thing to consider and picking your paints as if you want normal gouache or acrylic gouache. The only main difference that acrylic wash is not relatable. So this means once it's dry, it's dry forever. But otherwise it behaves in exactly the same way when it's wet. If you will tend to layer a lot of layers and like to paint solid colored backgrounds and then add layers on top of those. Or don't like to rework your pieces and still like to paint over them, then maybe acrylic gouache is something to consider. But if you're going to mostly do one or two layers and like to rework your pieces and get that oil painting feel the normal gouache should be better for you. It's really just a personal preference, and we'll talk more about this in a future lesson. You'll also notice that some gouaches called artists gouache, while others is called designer gouache. That's because of something called fugitive colors. Fugitive colors are colors that fade when exposed to light for a period of time. You can check each colors permanence on the tube or on the paint brands website, for example, are artists squashed primary colors from Holbein are all permanent or higher as you can see here. But if you look at these colors, the highest is only moderately durable. Some of them aren't even rated it like the opera pink, which is definitely a fugitive color and we'll fade very quickly when exposed to light. These are designer colors. Designer colors are meant for graphic designers or surface pattern designers. They come in so many colors, but they are not meant to be framed in hanged or so like traditional artists, pieces that are made to be scanned in instead and can be sold as prints instead. The trade off of fugitive colors is you get a lot more choices in colors. But picking whether you just use artists gouache or mixed designer gouache with artists gouache is up to you. I generally just scanned my pieces to share with the world and I won't sell original. So designer gouache, works well for me because I really like bright colors. But if you want to hang, your pieces or sell your originals and paintings like nature or animals, things that have more muted natural colors, you should use only artists gouache. So be sure to check the permanence of the colors you buy. Now one more thing you might want to get as extra tubes of white. You will find yourself going through white very quickly. You will notice there are two types of white that you can buy. Titanium white or permanent white is probably the color you got in your set. It's used to add highlights. It's a very opaque white and when mixed with a color it will dull it a little more. But zinc white is not as opaque, so shouldn't be used for highlights and is instead perfect for mixing with color to lighten it without reducing saturation. So titanium white is for highlights and zinc white is for mixing with other colors. Another new trick is to mix water colors with zinc white to make an opaque paint that is pretty much gouache. This is a good idea if you're not sure, if you want to dabble in gouache and have tubes of water colors. You could try this out first, but watercolor tubes tend to be pricier than gouache, So this isn't cost-effective. Now that we got paint out of the way, let's dive into the other things need to get started. Gouache can be used in a variety of surfaces, from wood to cardboard, but watercolor paper tends to be ideal. You can get away with using paper that is thinner, like this black paper, which is only 100 pounds as long as you don't use too much water, it works just fine. But if you want to learn more or use it like a wash, which just means use a lot more water. I recommend using at least 140 pound paper, just like in watercolor. Watercolor paper is ideal for this because it is made to handle lots of water. It comes in cold press which has a textured to it, or hot press which is smooth. This is just a personal preference. But the general rule of thumb is if you want to include more detail, I'd go with hot press. If you like texture and looser paintings, cold press might be a better choice. A 140 pound Canson XL paper is very cheap, so it's great bang for your buck paper, doesn't have too much texture to it even though it's cold press. So if you want to budget paper that will hold up well, and it's easy to start with. This, is it? If you want to invest more money, you can get something like Arches paper, which is the highest quality but very pricey. Just try out different papers until you find your favorite one. I tend to use a couple of different kinds, but Canson XL is my favorite one because I feel less guilty if I make mistakes on it and have to throw away the page, I find that the more expensive your paper is, the more up work you have or fear and it can stop people from getting their hands dirty, especially if you're just starting out. I would go with the cheaper Canson XL paper as for brushes, watercolor brushes tend to work perfectly, but I find that they hold too much water if they're made from real fur or are synthetic to mimic fur. This is just my personal preference, but I prefer synthetic brushes for gouache. Another benefit to this is they're usually cheaper and gouache tends to ruin your brushes faster than watercolors do. So I wouldn't use your fanciest watercolor brushes with gouache. Another thing to keep in mind is acrylic gouache acts like acrylic paint. That means if it dries on your brush, your brush is ruined. So you have to wash it very quickly after you use it. If you're getting acrylic gouache, get cheaper brushes and be sure to wash your brush and brush soap or normal soap after each use, you can just gently rinse it and water until all the pink comes out. My recent favorite brushes for normal gouache are the Golden Taklon round 2000 series by Trekell. You can get away with just having one round brush and for me that'd be a size 6. But I recommend getting one for detail, a medium one and a large one. I preferred round brush sizes are;s zero for detail, a six for most things and 10 for larger areas. But this depends on how you like to work and is a personal preference. The most important thing about the brush you get is it can make a point when wet. If your brush can do that and it's soft, he should be good to go. You will also need a pallet to mix on and squeeze your paints onto and using them, you might be tempted to make your palette like a watercolor one by squeezing paint onto pellet and leaving to dry. So you don't have to squeeze paints out every single time. It can just reactivate it with water and this can be done, but I don't recommend it unless you are using your gouache thinly like watercolors only. Gouache better straight out of the tube. It does react to it with water, but it won't be as thick as it can be out of the tube. So if you layer a lot and let's use thicker paint, I don't recommend you do this and instead take out as much as you need for each painting, you can always get more paint. If your paint dries on your palette and you can always leave it for next time for the thinner or first layers. You have a lot of options and freedom when it comes to what to mix them. You can use a mixing palette or a simple plate, or for a limited color palette, a small mixing tray like this one. Some other supplies you'll need are two containers of water. One for initially cleaning your brush, and the second for making sure it's clean, a scrap cloth or paper towel, which can be used to remove excess paint and water from your brush. You might also want a pencil and eraser to sketch out your piece before you start, and that's it. There are other things you can use, essentially anything using watercolor, but these are the basics needs to get started. Now that we have everything we need, let's dive in. 4. Basic Properties of Gouache: We talked a little about how gouache behaves, but let's dive deeper into its properties. Gouache dries fast, but if the room you're in is more humid, it will dry slower. It also dries matte. This can be very useful for determining if your paint is still wet. If you look shiny in anyway, then you're seeing water, so it's still wet. Also, colors tend to shift a little bit as they dry, usually, and this depends on the paint you are using. Darker colors become lighter and lighter colors become darker. This can make it very hard or impossible to match the same color by mixing it again. But the higher quality paint you have, the less noticeable the shift is. Another thing that can happen is paint cracking if you use too much of it. This usually doesn't happen, but it's something to watch out for if you plan to use it very thick with many layers. This is also something that cheaper paints tend to do more of, and it's something acrylic wash is very immune to. Now, the most important property of gouache in my opinion is that it can be reactivated with water at anytime. This can be extremely useful for fixing mistakes or reworking a dry painting, but it's definitely something you need to be aware of at all times, especially when layering. We'll talk about this more in a future lesson. But there is a nifty work around to this if it bothers you. Like I said before, you can use acrylic gouache. When your paint is dry with acrylic wash, it will be dry forever. Another perk to use in acrylic gouache is that the color you see is the color you will get when it's dry and it's also way less prone to cracking. There are a lot of benefits to it, and I encourage you to think about how you would like to paint before you buy your paints so you can pick the right paint for you. I highly recommend it if you want to layer a lot and I would give it some thought. You can get almost the same effects with both, but just depends on how you like to work. Normal gouache is like oil paints because it can be reworked, and acrylic wash is like acrylic paint because once it's dry, it's dry and you just have to layer it more. Like I said earlier, gouache can do anything that watercolor can. For example, here I drop salt into a wet layer and let it dry. Once it's dry, I can scrape off the salt and we get this beautiful texture. I got this technique from using watercolors. If you want to learn more interesting techniques on using diluted gouache, you can check out my, Anyone Can Watercolor class to learn them. But the most fun one is hands down the wet-in-wet technique. This just means we apply what paint to wet paper with or without paint, and it will spread around and do fun things. The paint spreads a little differently from water color and the particles are more visible because they're bigger, but the effect is still beautiful. Also with gouache, if you use more paint, you will get more fun textures which looked way different from the watercolor ones. I personally love them, but if you don't like them, just don't use the wet-in-wet gouache technique and instead just use less water. You can also make gradients by using more water on one side and more paint on the other or you could just use white gouache instead of water. We'll go into blending in a future lesson, but my point is it's a very versatile medium. Now, let's get our hands dirty and dive into the details of how it works and how to use it by starting with flow and opacity. 5. Flow & Opacity: This lesson will be recorded live because I want you guys to really pay attention. It's very important to master how much paint we use and how much water we use. We have to learn how to use this ratio correctly with our brush. Paint straight out of the tube, is usually the most opaque paint you can use. If you don't add any water and just use a slightly damp brush, you can get a very opaque color. This is very thick, and as you can see, it creates texture very easily. If you want the dry brush technique, that's perfect for it. It's also very opaque, and it will show up quite easily on paper. Let me show you a better example of this, with a different color. Again, I'm going in with a slightly damp brush, not a dry one because that would make a really dry brush texture, and I'm going to just paint with a lot of paint. As you can see, it's very thick, and again it's easy to make the dry brush technique. If I put this on the paper that's black, you can see the color show up really easily. One more thing to keep in mind is difference between brands. Hoping gouache is less watery than Winsor & Newton gouache. As you can see, it's already very liquidy, even though I didn't add any water to it compared to this one. Now if I paint here, it's still very opaque, but it has not as much texture as the other ones. That's just something to keep in mind with brands. It's not a big deal. It's really not that noticeable. Now if you just gently start adding water to your paint just a little bit and then blending it, you're going to get the right consistency for painting with gouache. It's still going to be opaque, but it's going to be much easier to handle, and it won't make the dry brush texture. Even if I tried to, I can't really do it because we are using more water. It's really about getting that right balance. For me, it's just a tiny couple of drops and you can always pick up more paint like this and make it a little thicker if you want, especially if you're layering. It's almost the same, but this time the paint is a little thicker and this will be perfect for a second or third layer. Now this is something you just have to practice and try out yourself. One other thing you can do, is add even more water for a clear wash. Now, this will show up just fine on white paper, but if I put this on the black paper, you can barely see it. It's more like watercolor because we used a lot of water and little pigment, just like we would use watercolor. For this technique, you can only use it on white paper, and the white page shows through and that's why you can see it. This is really great to do for the first layer of your painting, because if there's more paint down like right here, and I try to paint over it, even with thicker paint, I can easily react the paint below, as you can see here. But, if there's less paint like right here, and I tried to paint over it, it's much easier not to reactivate the paint below. You really have to just learn how to balance how much water and how much paint you're using, and it's just something that takes practice to master. I encourage you to just take out a color and do exactly what I'm doing and just play around with how much paint is on your brush, how much water is on your brush, and what the color looks like on the page, how thick it is and things like that. Just play around with it, and see where you can find your happy medium. For me, my happy medium, it's not too liquidy, but it's also not too thick. It's just a little bit liquidy like this. This is my perfect gouache consistency. But to get here you have to practice, and maybe you prefer more water or more paint. That's up to you. Just take a few colors and play with them and see what works for you. Once you master the water to paint ratio, painting with gouache should be a breeze. You can always just use less water to make thicker paint or more water to make thinner paint. That's pretty much the gist of it. It's nothing complicated and nothing fancy, and as you can see right here, this is fully dry, and if I layer on top of it, this will be the easiest to not disrupt the layers below because we barely use any paint below it. Fully pink. I could even do a large area like this, that's why I always recommend to use a lot of water and a little pigment for your first layers, and just use it on white paper. But if you paint on darker paper, you don't really have a choice, you have to paint thick all the way through, and you can. You just have to be careful. Grab a color or two or three and try this out yourself. See how the paints interact with different consistencies, and get a feel for what looks right and what doesn't. Like I said before, you're going to have your own preferences with this and you're going to get better with experience, but by just trying this out in a scrap piece of paper, you're going to learn a lot I highly recommend you do this too. Let's move on. 6. Layering: Layering is what gouache excels at, but it does have limits or little quirks you have to work around. For example, with regular gouache, not the acrylic type, you always have the chance of reactivating the layers below. When I tried to paint white over the owl here, it doesn't work out so well because it react to it some of the dark paint and it is very visible in a white paint since the value of contrast is so high. I have to do a second layer of white to fight this, but even then it won't be perfectly white. Gouache is very easy to use to add highlights at the end when they're small, but if you want to make a larger portion or painting white or completely different color, plan it out with a thumbnail sketch, then make a detailed sketch and don't paint there with any other color. You have to plan out this thing beforehand. This doesn't only apply to white, but also to very vibrant colors. For example, even though I picked up a lot of pink and waited for the yellow to fully dry, you can still see the yellow through the pink here making an orange. The previous color is striking through because it's so bright and as you can see, it's still strikes through even if I just paint in small details. But if I add a little white sink to the pink, it will make it more opaque and the strike through won't be there anymore. This is a nifty shortcut, but you're paying with less vibrancy. Like I said before, try to pick out your general colors beforehand, and if they're extremely different where they'll be layered, try to paint around that. If they are similar or not too bright, this shouldn't be a problem as you'll see in a future lesson. This is something you'll get used to doing in planning with practice and trial and error. It largely depends on the kind of colors and brands of paint you use. One more thing to keep in mind when you layer, is to use less paint and more water on your first layers, especially if your paper is white. The thicker the first layer is, the easier it is to reactivate it, and then you'll make a muddy mess of colors. If your paper is white, you can use less paint because the white paper shows through and it will make it look vibrant anyway, and then your second layer will not react with the first for sure, so it will makes it easier to layer. This is also just another trick to keep in mind and you'll get the hang of it with practice. These rules mostly apply to bigger shapes but with adding detail, it's always super easy no matter how many layers you have, you just have to get the right consistency of paint to water, which is just more paint than water and sometimes you'll paint straight from the tube. Like we talked about earlier, just remember that the more water you pick up, the less opaque your paint is and the higher the chance that you will reactivate the paint below is. Getting the fill of it just takes practice. But as you can see here, blended with the paint below, this can be a cool effect if you do it on purpose. Since our yellow is so bright, it's strike through the blue here, even though I picked up a lot of paint. Notice how easy and perfect the white dots as details are. But if I try and do it in a darker paint and make longer strokes, it does pick up a little of the blue at the edges. You can always do a third, fourth, or fifth layer, just be sure not to make it too many because your paint could crack. This is more of an advanced technique, but I added a tiny bit of white paint and lots of water. While it's still wet, I can add more paint and this will make a very subtle gradient. I can also paint with more water and less pigment. It will reactivate the paint, but will also give a dreamy wash effect, and it can be layered. The smaller your strokes are and the lighter your hand is, the less paint would be reactivated. It's really about experiment with what works for your style. I personally love to paint loose with lots of water. One last thing, you could do is lift paint by just wetting it and picking up excess color with a dry brush or paper towel. This can also make a subtle gradient that is getting lighter. If you do this with simple shapes and just play with the ratio of paint to water and practice blending with the layer below or not blending or having a heavy-handed hand or light hand, you will master the skill of layering. Then it will become second nature and you won't have to think about it, but you have to try to get your hands dirty first and just do it. It's really just about trying this out for yourself and getting used to how the paint behaves. Go ahead and paint out a few shapes, play around with how much paint versus water using its shape and how much you use on each subsequent layer and see how it reacts. Once you get the basics down, you can really play with it and combine different techniques together. Now, let's learn one of the most important techniques, blending. 7. Blending: Gouache can be tricky to blend, but it can be done extremely well like in Bao Pham's gorgeous work. He paints skin that has effortlessly blended and looks like oil paint or it can be settled with solid colors that touch like in Heather Ihn Martin's work. She makes the illusion of blending and lot of her work, but just putting the different values of color next to each other. This is also a form of visual blending and has a different feeling to it. It's very easy to do. You can do with layering by awaiting for the first layer to dry and then just steadily changing the value and adding the next one. Here I did it by gradually mixing more black into the paint with each layer, or it can be done by just putting them next to each other, like in this example, the trick is to let the first layer dry before adding the next one next to it. I'm using more paint and less water dries quickly and I can add more once it's dry.As you can see, you can vary your color steadily, but try to keep the value changes gradually unless you're adding shadows or highlights for more blended look. This is one of the easiest ways to blend and can make for a live pieces.The great thing about gouache, is since it's water-soluble, you can blend it anytime even after your pieces dry, by just using a little water or the coloring between the two that are touching, so you're never stuck with any one way of blending. Can vary it and rework it at anytime in your piece. Practice this yourself if you're interested in this blending.Now, if you want to do seamless blending that looks more like gradients, grab your paints and let's get right into it. This is my personal favorite way of doing it. Pick a color and start off with gouache, then pick up a tiny bit of paint and mix it with the white and add that on. Keep doing this by gradually adding a little more color and painting right next to your last one. Notice how gradual that color shift is, and how seamless since we're doing this with the previous layers touching and they're still wet. The trick is not to use too much water, because then they can run through all the paint and blend too much. That way we are using more water than the previous exercise. It's just a fine balance. If you want cool textures and the paint to travel more and blend more and be more loose, you can use more water. If you want it to be more smooth and accurate without any texture like for realism, use less water. Just make sure to make the value changes more gradual. It's up to your personal style so play with it and see what you'd like more. Once you get back to your original color, you can try this out with any color you like by just blending the new color with the old color, and painting with that, and placing the new color like I did with the purple. But if you skip this step and just pick up a color that's completely different like I did here, they will blend a little since it's still wet. But it's not seamless, more like just fuzzy edges that are touching. This is not gradual value change. Another way you can do this is to put the new color next to it and then mix the colors between the two and pain it in. My point is there are a ton of ways to do this, it's up to you what you'll prefer to do the most. This technique is great for doing bigger areas and for detail work. Let's see it in action with diverse colors. I painted these vibrant, but different colors next to each other. Now let's see if we can blend them.I start with a clean brush and just try to blend where they touch. This helps, but as you can see, any more yellow because there's too much green here, so I picked him up and blend it out even more, I do the same thing on the green set, I'm just eyeballing it and seeing what colors I need to blend and more to make it more gradual until it looks right. I have the freedom to do this at anytime, even if it's dry. I can use this technique with the rest very easily, but if you want more control of the second color, is very different like in this case, with it being black, you can leave space between your colors, and then mix the two colors on your blending tray, and then paint it in the middle, and blend as you normally would. You could also use less water and just paint each stroke by gradually changing the color right next to it are slightly overlapping. This is also an easy way to blend, but because you're using less water, the strokes be more visible and the colors will blend into each other less. My device is to get a scrap piece of paper, and test out these techniques and to see what works best for you. Play around with how much water you have on your brush or if you do stroke by stroke gradually, or blend on the page but adding more, or if you want to wait for it to dry before blending, or even just using a dry brush. The possibilities really are endless, and you just need to find your favorite way of doing it. Now, let's see what we learned being put to action with some 3D spears. 8. 3 Spheres Example: Now that we get the basics of spreading, Let's see being put to action three different ways. Just keep in mind that these are only three ways and there are ways that I like to do it, but that doesn't mean you have to do the same thing. Like I said before, experiment to find your favorite way, and there are infinite number of ways of doing this. The first one is using the wet in wet technique. I'm not using a soaking wet brush, but it is wet and I'm being generous with the amount of paint I put down and water. I have to work quick because the paint will only spread and blend well it's wet but the more water you use the longer it take to dry. Anyway, you have time since it's pretty wet. The fun thing about this technique is as sluice and the textures that are created where the paints blend are beautiful. There's a lot of texture, but also fun and seamless blending, but you have less control because the paint travel more because there's water on the page. This is the fun and loose way to paint. You can add in color anytime. Just watch it, move around. If you put too much paint somewhere, you can always clean and dry your brush and then use it to pick up excess paint or water or you could use a paper towel. You can also add more paint of different colors at any time. We are using the wet and wet technique here. Notice how excellent touch the sphere with a shadow, and this made the paint bleed into it. These kinds of accidents can be beautiful but can be avoided if you paint more carefully and can always be painted over. But I think it gives them more character and adds the loose look. In the second way of painting, I use less water and thicker paint and set down where I want the shadow first and then painting the rest of the sphere. Then I go back into smooth out and blend what I already painted with a wet brush. Since gouache is rebuttal, it doesn't matter if it dries like I did here, I can add more paint or more water at anytime. I add a lighter colors because I thought I made it too dark. That's the great thing about gouache, can be easily layered like this, since I use less water, the sphere less loosened texture than the last one and is more realistic. For this last one, I paint out the base colors first and then let it fully dry, and I can go back in and at the shadows and highlights, being careful not to thin out my paint too much by not using too much water. I use my normal layering technique with this and then I blended just like I did with the others. But since I'm using even less water, there is hardly any textures in the blending, it's very smooth. This is a way a lot of artists like to paint because it can be very easy to do and it's more realistic. I can always go back in and add different details or layers or paint over mistakes after my painting is dry. I didn't do that here, but remembering that keeps a pressure off about making it perfect right away. I hope this demonstration showed you how you can blend in many different ways and took some of the mystery out of it. It's really a personal preference which just tries my different techniques as you can even put your own twist on it to make it your own unique way of working with this amazing medium. Let's get into some advanced tips and tricks. 9. Advanced Tips & Tricks: You now know the basics but let's go in a little bit deeper with some advanced tips and tricks you might want to try out. First off, remember how tricky the blending was here? This happens because the gouache dries so fast. You can always use more water but that might make too much texture. If you want clean, smooth blending and want to take your time with it, you can add a couple of drops of ox gall to your clear water. It will make the paint blend more smoothly. It increases flow but the downside, or maybe not the downside depending on your style, is drying time will also increase. So your paint will stay wet longer and you'll have more time to play with it. This is an option if you really like to blend and like to paint slower like with oil paints. Another thing to keep in mind with gouache is you can easily mix it with other media other than watercolor. You can use all sorts of dry media on top but I wouldn't recommend wet medium. If you want to use wet media that can dry quickly like watercolor, use it first, and then gouache. Some fine media to incorporate are colored pencils or ink. But your potential is limitless, so just have fun with it. As you already know, you can also use all sorts of cool techniques that you might know from watercolor painting, like dry brush by using paint straight from the tube for some texture or making very light washes for backgrounds. If you don't know anything about watercolor, I recommend you learn the medium as well because you can use any technique from it with gouache. So you'll master two mediums in one. Speaking of, if you have water color, you can always use it for the first layer in your paintings and then gouache on top or even do a whole piece in watercolor and then just fix mistakes with gouache. Just be sure not to use watercolor on top of gouache because it is not opaque and won't work on a solid layer. It will just react with the paint and add some pigment. So always use it first or you can even mix your watercolors with gouache to make new ones if you have limited gouache palate. Also, if you use watercolor paper and like to use lots of water with your gouache, you can to tape down your paper with artist tape to minimize warping. This is something I usually do. So if your paper warps a lot, keep this in mind. Also, if you plan to paint on something flexible, be sure to keep it flat after you're done to prevent cracking. If you want to paint on a fun surface that's free, you can use cardboard that you were going to recycle anyway. I like to use the pieces that are on the back of my watercolor paper pads. They're very durable and I like the color. As for storing your pieces, the best way to store gouache paintings if you use fugitive colors is in a dark box with a sheet of paper in between them or if you want to frame them, behind glass so dust and water can't get in. As you know, gouache can easily be scanned or photographed because it is smart. Another benefit to this is it you get fun angles for pictures without any glare. Finally, the most important advanced tip is to learn from as many sources and artists as you can. Study other people's work or watch speed paintings. Collect inspiring pieces on a Pinterest board and study them. If you really like a piece, try copying it. You will learn a lot from doing this about how to use the medium but just be sure not to share your study copies with anyone else or claim it as your own, unless the artist said you can share it if you credit them. Always respect other artists. But there is nothing wrong with copying to learn, as long as you're just doing it to learn and don't share it. In fact, this is one of the best and fastest ways to grow your skills. I talk about this more in my What every artist know class and if your serious about being an artist, I recommend you check it out. Now that you got the basics of gouache down,now let's see some live examples. Don't be shy. Grab your brushes and paint and follow along with me to learn the most. But if you don't want to, you can just watch and then do your own thing with the same techniques. But be sure to get your hands dirty and paint something no matter what, so that you will remember everything you learned and will incorporate it and actually grow your skills. 10. Wet in Wet Play: For this technique, we're going to play with wet on wet, and we're going to play with how your ink paint interacts with water, how much water to pick up, how much paint to pick up, what happens when you have paint already down, and the second layer comes on, things like that. We're going to be playful. I'm going to illustrate flowers, but you can do this with any subject you like. You can just watch this lesson and see what I do and then just play around with it with whatever you want to do or you can follow along with me exactly. It's up to you. To start, pick out the colors you want to use. I picked five colors, but you can do less or more and be sure to have white on-hand or black. If you are mixing all your colors, be sure to do it now. I'm going to put my colors in the palette. You don't need a lot of paint. A little bit will go along way. You can always add more. But if you are pre-mixing, be sure to mix enough paint. Because if you're run out of paint, it's very tricky to mix the same color and almost impossible. With this technique, we're going to have fun mixing on the page. Pick a color, any color you like. Here I've chose pink. Be sure to add enough water. You can use even more water because we're doing wet in wet. Make a shape of a flower, I'm going to do something like this. Notice how this is very water colory so far. I'm going to pick up another color. I'm going to drop more of that in there. Depending on how much water you have on your brush and how much pigment, the paint will spread more or less, especially in gouache where we can get very opaque gouaches. I'm going to do another one. I'm going to keep doing these simple shapes. You can copy me exactly or make up your own. I'm throwing in different colors. This color is lighter than this one, but because it's gouache, we can add it in. This time I picked up more paint, so it's spreading less than this one did. We're playing with our paint to water ratio and experimenting with how it reacts with water on the page. This is really just for practice and for you to get better at understanding how much paint to pick up, how much water to pick up, what will happen, how wet your page is. You need experience with this to fully comprehend it because you can read about it, you can watch me do it, but you have to try it for yourself. Here I have more paint and less water and also it's spreading less than this one, even though the page is pretty wet. I can make a dryer flower by using more pigment here. If we make a wet on wet technique, it will spread even less unless we add more water, so it barely spread, but it still didn't, so it makes a beautiful texture. We're going to keep going like this. I'm going to make a couple of flower shapes until I'm happy with it. I'm just playing with how much paint is on my brush, how much water is on my brush, and how it interacts with the next layer and the next layer. This is a fun and playful exercise. If you wanted to learn how to paint loose florals, I have classes on that, that go more in depth into doing this more realistically based on references. But this is just for fun. I'll just make simple shapes. Here I'm tapping the page and I'm really just letting that paint get on there and see how beautifully that spreads. Again, I'm adding little dots. I like doing that. I really like this technique with these flowers. Also you can add little dots on the outside of them. Make it even more fun and playful. Very simple. I can keep going and keep adding more and more flowers until I'm happy with it. I recommend you try to fill up the page as much as you can, because it's more and more practice. You're just getting used to picking up enough paint, and enough water, and seeing how it reacts if you get a little bit more, a little bit less. There are no mistakes here. Just practice. Don't be afraid to make your mistakes, just experiment as much as you can. While the paint is still wet, I want to start adding in some stems so that it can blend into it. If I wanted them not to blend, I would wait for it to fully dry and then I would add them on. I would make a little thicker paint where they touched so it doesn't reactivate the paint underneath. This is just something that you learn with practice. Do want to make it a little lighter so I add a little bit of white and enough water. You can see this is still wet, so I'm picking it from that pink and it's going to float into it. Just a little bit. Same thing here, and we're being very loose. There is no pressure here, just for fun. We're just having fun. Another fun thing you can do is pick up color or change your color a little bit and go back in there and make a very gradual blending. If I make a little gradient, by picking up a little bit more, you see how this gradually blends from dark blue to light turquoise. This was more like a drying technique. Like you saw in the previous speers exercise, there's a lot of ways to blend and I want you to play with those and see what you like the most. Here I want darker stem. This is dry so I did paint over it and it didn't blend in. But here see how it did because it was still wet? The paint went to the water. I really like that effect here. Here, it's also fun. It's up to you. Just learn how to use your paints. Practice. Let's say I want to add some leaves here that are darker. I can easily do that. The fun thing about loose florals like this is you can be as loose as you want with your strokes and it will still look pretty cool. Let's say I want to make it more interesting. I can do that dry brush technique again, or I can wet my brush and pick up more of the color that I want and just go back in and very gently and carefully, add a little bit of a line. This is almost fully dry, so it's sitting on top, but also reactivates a little, it gives it a cool effect. My point is play around, see what works for you see what you like, see what you don't like right here, it's the leaves, I'm going to add that in. It's going to blend more. I like that. It's all about practice and seeing what works best for you. Let's say I want to add some full leaves here and I want to have fun blending them. Let's I do the first layer, just the full color like this. Now I have one color pretty much and I can go back in and maybe blend it out a little bit and make it a little bit more interesting. Maybe up here, I'll add a little bit of wet paint into the wet paint and I will blend and I'll naturally smooth it out with my brush. It has a cool texture to it and a little bit of variation in the color. If you ever do like I did here, I can just pick up my previous color and just add that back in. It will blend and blend. I love this blending. Another fun way of doing this, is to start painting it with one color, pick up another one and continue painting it, then pick up another one and continue painting it. It will naturally blend. Similar to what we did here, but this was a little bit more wet and just as beautiful. You don't have to do exactly what I do with every stroke, the whole point is just to practice. In fact, you'll get better if you do your own thing, but you can copy me exactly. That's up to you. Copying is a great learning tool. Don't ever be embarrassed of doing so. Just don't ever claim anything you make when you copy is your own. As you can see, I'm pretty fun what I mix my paints on here and I don't mind mixing on the page. It's whatever you want to do. Whatever makes the most fun for you. I'm eyeballing my piece and seeing where I can use more color and adding that in. Nothing fancy. Just playing. Like I said before, it's not about the composition with this, it's just about practicing putting color down, blending it, and putting more or less down. Just have fun and practice. I continue doing this until I'm happy with it. You can use more or less water or more or less paint. Just vary what you do. Like here I used diluted paint with a lot of water, and this made a transparent color, but I didn't have to use a lot of white, I used the white of the paint to show through. To make it even more fun, I can go back in now, and I can add a second layer to the flowers. Let's mix a new color, maybe something lighter. I have to use more paint because a second layer, you don't want to react with the layer below. But like I said before, we're practicing everything here so you can do it on purpose as well. Maybe I just want to add little details. Oops, it was still wet right here. I didn't check and because of that, it started blending and that's okay. I like that. Let's play with it. Let's be playful. If I don't like something that I do, it's gouache, it's so easy to paint over it. I can go back in with my previous color even while it's still wet, blend it all out and make a new color. There is no worries. Everything is fun and chill. I can paint over any layer that I want and make, any color that I want. Voila. Completely new flower. But let's say I want to layer like I did before. I learned my lesson, I'm going to check. Is it dry? It's dry. I can go back in now and add more detail. This is completely optional. You don't have to have a second layer, but I think it makes things pop more and that's really the strength of gouache. You can't do this with water color. I recommend you play with it and see what works for you. I'm going to do a second layer on this one, because it's not going to match the other ones if I don't. Unless I keep some of them like this. The point is to play though, just play with it. Have fun. I'm adding little accents and little details. I could also reactivate the paint below on purpose and blend it out into something new. For example, let's pick up some pink and put it right here. Then I can clean my brush and dry it. I could very gently, add to the old paint to blend with this new paint. That's going to leave a beautiful gradient as well and it's going to make some fun textures. This is just something for you to play with. You can do all kinds of things. I can go in, start adding outlines to my flower and just have fun with it. There are no rules. Only the rules that you create. I want you guys to be playful with your paints, and I want you to be open to experimentation and try new things because we all have a fun way of working with it and we all have our favorite way. I'm keeping my hand loose on purpose and making really loose strokes, which is fun. But you can be as careful as you want. That's up to you. Because this paint isn't fully opaque, I didn't pick up a lot of it. You can still see the color below, but they don't blend because I painted very carefully and quickly. I didn't remove the paint below it too much, so that's why it overlaps like this and makes beautiful transparent layers. Like I said before, this isn't to show off, this is just a practice, so just have fun with it and layer as much as you want, add as many little details as you want, play with how much paint is on your brush, what happens, how it interacts with the paint below it, and how much water you have on your brush. This is all very important to know, so just play with it. As by free style and composition like this, you're learning a lot about layouts, what looks good and what doesn't. That's why I highly recommend you learning the basics of graphic design because you subconsciously will know what looks good and what doesn't. That'll become easier. But even if you fail, that's how you learn, so don't worry so much about mistakes and all that. Just have fun. We're just practicing painting. You don't have to do florals for this exercises, you can do anything you want. You can do little mushrooms or little people or a city, whatever you want to do, whatever your style is. There are no wrong answers in art, and we are all completely unique in our expression. I'm playing with it and adding as much detail as in one of that, wherever I want to add it, and just having fun. If you don't want to disrupt the pink below, be careful to not pick up too much water and just have enough paint. Then you can add details right on top of other paint and it shouldn't be a problem. Also pay attention to how different colors interact. Some colors tend to stand out more and strike through like I showed earlier, and some work perfectly together in harmony. Be playful, do your own thing, and have fun until you feel like you're done. I feel like I'm done and this is not something I would put in a gallery or something, but this is just a fun little exercise to do and just be playful with it. It can teach you a lot. For example, I could go back in now and try to fill in this little spot with paint and make it not bleed. That could be a little challenge that you could do at the end. Just play with it like a coloring book page and challenge yourself to do things, and see if you can do them if you learned how much paint to pick up, how much water to pick up, and what happens. That's the goal of this, just to learn. Just practice and see what you come up with, and just have fun with it. No big deal, just fun. Now let's do the next one. 11. Live Example: We're going to paint this beautiful landscape, or my interpretation of it. I'm just going to start by putting the colors down that I want to use. It's also okay not to be realistic and just to make up your own colors. That's what I like to do in most of my pieces. Just make a color palette that is pleasing to you. For my first layer, I'm going to be very light. I want the sky to be a watercolory sky. Notice how I picked a much lighter blue, a Turquoise blue instead of the dark blue we have in our reference. It is all up to you. I'm just going to go in there. Put a lot of water on my brush, and I'm just painting in the sky. The fun thing about Gouache is I could put the whole thing in, and then add the clouds. I'm just doing a silhouette of how the hills look.Don't worry about the tree too much. We're going to put that over. This is a very light layer, so it's easy to layer it. I'm going to be very loose with this piece, but we're going to use a lot of layers to make it more fun. Another thing you could do is add in another blue, just a little bit to make the sky have a nice gradient to it. I'm just going to put a little bit on top. I picked up less water this time, so it spreads less. I'm just going to go in and maybe pick up a little more water and just paint in this nice and beautiful darker blue. You're mixing your own colors. You can do all these by just premixing them. When I feel like I'm happy with it, I'm done or I could add in more water to make some cool textures, so that we're ready for the clouds. Now what I could do is add the clouds right now or later, depending on how defined I want them to be. If I want to be more fluffy, I can pick up some white, and start adding them in right now. You don't have to follow your reference. You can make up your own cloud shapes. This is our picture and whatever we want to do is cool. As you can see, since the page is still wet, it's blending beautifully, making very cool effects. We're going to clean up our [inaudible] really good. I'm going to pick up just white and I'm going to go back in and add more definition. I'm just adding in more clouds wherever I feel like they'll be cute. Since the page is still wet, we can do this. Look how beautiful the textures are. Then you can lift for this to dry, and then add more white on top to make it more defined once it's dry. Because right now it's blending with the colors that we already have on, which is the blue. Just have fun, make some fuzzy cloud shapes, and let's move on. I'm going to start adding in the landscape. I'm picking up some yellow. I'm going to add in this one. Like I said before, the tree is going to go over, so I'm not worried about that. I'm just going to put in exactly where it goes, which is like this, a simple shape. Now, add a little bit of green to that. You don't want to be too perfect. When you add more colors, it's always more fun. This time, I did use a lot of water again because we're still on the first layer and we're using it on a white page so the white shines through the paint, we don't have to use too much paint. This makes layering, the top layers easier because we have a smaller chance of reactivating the paint below. Now we're going to add in the green that's in the background. I'm going to lighten it so I'm adding a little bit of white to it. I'm just going to paint that in. Just simple shapes. This doesn't have to be exactly like the reference. We're just using it for inspiration. You can make your hill bigger or smaller, or whatever you want to do. Just be careful before doing this, that the yellow paint is dry because if it's not, it's gonna blend in unless you like that effect, which I do in the clouds. Then we can add in some more while it's still wet, different color, slightly different, just to make it more fun. It blends right on the page for us because it's still wet. Next we're going to get another green. I'm matching mostly to the reference, but I can make up my own colors. But I do like the colors they have here. I am just making them more bright. But like I said before, this is your painting, you can do anything you want to do. Now I decided to layer the tree to show you guys how easy it is to layer. But you could have painted the tree in with this, and just been careful. Again, just make sure the yellow is dry before painting next to it. If it's not dry and you are impatient, you can always just put it really close but not touch them, which takes some skill and practice to get good at. I'm blending in the edge here a little bit, because I don't want it too hard. Now it looks pretty good to me. It's a light gradient. I'm picking some of that paint and putting it in here. We can just keep going with this. I can pick up a different green if I want to and just blend it in. I can get more water. Like I said before, I'm not using a lot of paint right now. I'm using mostly a lot of water. Gouache is very pigmented, so you don't need too much of it to make color up here on the page, especially if that page is white. We're going to add a little more detail. What I want to do is just pick up another color. I'm going to have some red thrown in there. Just a little bit of red. I'm going to mix this with my green to make a nice warmish brownish color. That way I can add in some of the details like some dry grass. While it's still wet, I'm putting this in. Because of that, it is blending out beautifully. I'm not picking up too much water when I'm doing this because I don't want to spread too much. I'm just doing this looking at my reference, seeing how it looks like in nature, and just adding the little details. Like I said before, you can leave out things from reference. You don't have to include everything you see. That's up to you. I just keep doing this until I'm happy with it. Here, I put a little too much brown. Very easy to fix. Just get some water on my brush, dry it off, make it clean, and just go in there and blend it out and that's it. Very simple. I did pick up a little bit of paint here, but I think it looks nice. You can always add more back in if you wanted to. Gouaches reactivated easily so you can play with it as much as you want. Now that we have our background pretty much, we can add in the trees, the little houses, and the details. Then we can define our clouds more. Let's get to that. This is still wet, but this is fully dry so I can start here. The good thing about Gouache is, when you're working on a piece, you can usually continue painting because other parts are dry so quickly. I'm going to pick a smaller brush this time. I was using a size ten, but now I'm going to pick a smaller brush, my size six. You can do all this with one brush. It just takes more strokes. I'm going to pick up some blue and green. I could add in some black to make it darker, but I don't want it to be too dark of a piece. I'm just going to, go in and start adding the trees that I see. Very gentle strokes. I have a lot more paint in my brush this time, and less water because this is a second layer, and I don't want to react with the paint below. Just adding in a nice simple tree silhouette by just doing squiggly lines with my brush. Just like little texture, just having fun with it. Nothing too serious. I can vary my colors a little to make it more fun. I'm just adding in all the little trees by doing the same exact strokes, just very loose. You can have it in many different ways. It's up to you, what would you like to do it the most. Just have fun with it. This is just our second layer for this. We're not going to do a third one. We can add a little details if you want, but you don't have to. You can use as thick paint as you want. Just don't do it too thick, unless you want some texture to it. I'm using a lot of paint again, and we're going to add in the rest of the trees. If you want them to be more realistic, add in some black to show the shadows. I can always do that on another layer as well. I don't have to copy in my reference exactly again, if you want to leave a tree out, you can. If you want to add another one, you can, it's up to you. Here are our last trees. Then, we can paint the big one here, and the little houses here, and a little fence, and the details. See layering makes it so much easier to just go back in. Now whatever you want to add. Now let's do the big tree now. I don't like the color of the big tree in the reference photo, so I'm going to make up my own green color for it. Make it more bright and fun. But I don't want to match this too much so I do have to make it stand out. Changing colors from what you see is a really fun way to just spice up a reference, and make it your own. You have the complete freedom to do so. Now, I'm just adding in the shape of the tree. I'm being very loose with it. You should leave specks like these around the edges because that is in the reference too and you're seeing what's behind the tree because the tree has leaves, and there's little holes everywhere around the edges especially, and sometimes in the middle. You can make up your own little shape or two. You can change the shape up, make it smaller, like I'm doing here. In anything and art, it's up to you what you want to do. Do your own thing. I'm picking up a little darker color for more in the center part. The more colors I pick up, and the more I blend them as I paint, the cooler it will look. But I'm using a lot of paint this time again, but this is optional. You can use more water since the previous layers will blend with this one. It won't make a big deal since they match. A lot of it is about judgment, and making your own calls. Just seeing what works for you, and what doesn't. I'm adding more darker areas with the blue. I'm using that as my black. I'm just going to keep going with this until it looks good to me. I'm just doing a little squiggly lines with my brush. You can practice on a scrap piece of paper if you want to. I have exercised the help with this in my inking class. It's really just being playful with your brush movements. I can pick up another color., make a maybe very light green and just add some highlights in there. You can use the reference to see where to add them. I'm using more water because I wanted to blend in a little, and be more fun and textured. Just add them in. Just put little dots, little specks where it's highlighted. This gives it more dimension. You can add a little bit of white if you want to. Just make a lighter color. The more colors you use, the more little variations and the more they blend, the more depth you'll have in your work. You don't want to overdo it but I think the more you have, the more fun it looks and the more interesting it is to look at. I talk about this more in my color mixing class, which is on watercolor, but all the same principles apply to Gouache. Now, I'm going to add some shadows with the blue, right under the tree. Just like in the reference. Just to make it a little more realistic. You don't have to be super detailed with this or super accurate. Then you can go back in and add more shadows as well. I started off with the base, neutral color, and then I went back in at the shadows and highlights. That's a really easy way to use Gouache, and makes it simpler for you to understand. Now, you can go back in with the green that was in their background and maybe blend that out a little bit with that, just to then soften the edges of our shadow. Since it's still wet, it blends very easily and beautifully and just add details until you feel happy with it. I think that looks really good and fun. You can take the blue, and add even more shadows on the other trees if you wanted to. Well, they're still a tiny bit wet to make it blend better. Just pay attention to the reference where the lights and darks are. You can squint your eyes to see those better. That's a really easy trick to use, but it's just practice. I'm just adding in to make it look more dimensional. The same squiggly lines, using a lot of paint, less water. But it doesn't matter if you use more water because the paint below matches this color and if it blends it'll look good. It's only if the color is very different, that we want to use very little water. In fact, sometimes you'll have to use free from a tube, like if you add white highlights. Okay, next step, I want to add some patches of darkness on the grass. So I'm just going to go in and just, where I see shadows in our reference, just add in some little patches of grass that are a little darker just to give it some variation. Also notice how there's more detail as you're closer to the image and less as you go further away. Another thing I want to add is some lines that you see in the reference. Very easily just with the tip of my brushes I just going to add a little bit, just a little bit, and you can use a smaller brush for this if you want to. Now let's paint in the little red house. Now this is something you have to more careful with because it's going to be on the green and yellow background. So we're going to have to use a lot of pain and very little water, and I'm going to use my smallest brush for this. You could do it with the six, but it's easier if you do something smaller. Now if you didn't want to deal with all this, you could just make it a different color, but I want to make it red just to show you how it can be done. I get more red paint and this time, I'm going to use a very little water and a lot of paint. My brush's covered in paint, and we're going to go and very carefully and just put it exactly where it is in the reference. Now only this part is bright red. So this is the only part I have to worry about. It's very small, so it's very easy to do this. If it was a bigger piece, the yellow might strike through more, but since it's so small, I can just use a lot of paint, layer it all like acrylics and just easily get the color I want. So this is just a judgment color, you'll get better at seeing how much paint to use and how much not to. The good thing about this, if used too little, you can just go back in and add more. I'm going to blend this with the blue to make a darker one and we're going to use for the shadow of the house, of the barn I mean, and we're just going to put that in. Very easily I'm just copying the shape. I'm not being super realistic with this. It's more like about having fun and just making it your own. Just have fun with it. Again, I'm using more paint than water, but I'm not too worried about blending the layer below because it's such a small, tiny little piece. I'm going to make this a little bigger, just adding more paint. Very easy. Now the roof is gray, so I'm going to get some white and I'm just going to put it here and just mix it with a little bit of blue. We're going to make a nice little grayish color. You could mix it with black if you wanted to but I see a little bit of blue in the reference, so that's what I'm doing, and I like that more. So am just going to paint that in using a lot of paint again and little water. You must be very careful when doing this when something so small and detailed, and if you want it to be really white, you can use paint straight from the tube, but since we're doing a little bit of a tint to it, we can do this. Now I made a mistake. I wasn't careful enough and I went a little bit in there. That's fine, I can just go back and with the other color and fix it up. That's a fun thing about wash, you don't have to be super careful. I mean, you do, but if you're not, you can always fix things very easily. Here's our cute little house, and now I don't want to include the other little shed nearby, but I do want to put the fence in. So let's do that while this dries so I can add the detail later. We'll mix a nice darkish color and I don't have to use too much paint for this. If I want it really dark, then yes, I should use more paint than water, but I'm okay with it being a little blended out, and I'm just going to put in the little fence. A smaller brush and will make this a lot easier if you're going to put details and landscapes I recommend you get one. Doesn't have to be super accurate like in the reference, and I'm varying the color a little, I picked up more red because it make more fun, and I could put a little gate here. I don't have to make it the same as in our reference, I think this would look cuter. So I'm just changing it up a little bit. Now you can't put a little line between them. Not on each one maybe because it's not fully visible, but just a little bit to hint at it. I'm just playing with it and making it my own. I can also show the fence all the way back here if I wanted to, just by adding small, tiny lines because these are far away, and since this tree didn't touch all the way down here, looks a little funky. So I can just go get the same color I used before [inaudible] and just go back in and add in a bottom to it. Very simple, nothing complicated, and I can even add some trees behind the house now that we have that painted in. Now we're almost done, but there's one thing I really don't like, and it's this, I made it way too dark. You'll make mistakes like this too, it's not a big deal. Just go back in with your original color and just go around it and just make it smaller and blend it out a little. I'm just adding in some yellow-red next to it to make it smaller, and now I can just go back in with the clean brush and just blend it out a little more to make it more light, and also the edges were a little too hard. So this blending of the edges really helps us well. Now I think it looks better. While I'm waiting for the house to dry, I can add more detail in all around the piece. Little, bright here. I can add a tiny bit of grass shapes if wanted to. Just little strokes, just for fun. Look how beautifully this dried. I love that, and I'm going back to my bigger brush and I'm going to add in the cloud shapes, I'm going to define them, I'm going to add more white. So this is where I'm picking of a lot of white, very little water, and I'm going to go in and just add in where I want them to be. So this is the parts that are not in shadow and I'm using my reference to guide me with the lighting. You have to be super accurate, but it helps to just add them where you see them. Squint your eyes again to see better. You don't have to be super detailed either just play around with it, and once you feel like you're done, you can go in and smooth the edges. So you see how I resize this to make it smaller, and in the reference, it's very big and goes into clouds. I like it like this more and that's one of the things that I changed and then you can do the same with whatever you like. So I'm going back in with a clean brush and I'm just smoothing out the edges to make it more soft. It's a little bit wet, so the wetness is what reactivates the paint, or it's still active right now, it's still led, but it smooth out the edges and mix it, more of a gradual blending instead of a hard blend. Pick up a little more water if it stops smoothing and just keep doing this. Just a tiny bit of water will go a long way. I am just blending it out. We want to keep that fluffy and soft shape in our clouds. To make my brush slightly wet, all I'm doing is using a paper towel to dry it off as soon as I wet it. I'm going to go back in with even more white and to do the main highlights. I'm just going to put them in there, and there, wherever I want the most highlights and I'm very likely just touching page with a light hand and just putting them exactly where I want them. This is like three layers of highlights and that's what makes it look more dimensional, and I can also smooth them out again if I want to. It's up to you how much white you want to include in your clouds. I think the white gives it a nice contrast, so I like to use it, and I can go back in again and smooth out the edges, and smooth out all the edges. We can have a little bit of hard edges, but it does make it look more cloud-like, and I think I'm done with the clouds. They look nice to me. Alright, let's put it on the finishing touches. I was going to include the shed here, so I put the tree too high again, I'm going to go back in and add the color and make it lower. Very simple, and again, these lines are too big, I'm going to go back in and just smoothen that a little. Once they're dry, use a smaller brush if you want to be more detailed. Just want to make them a little bit less noticeable, and now we can add the details on our little house, which are just windows that are pure white. I'm going to pick up a lot of paint again, and I'm just going to add in little squares, that would be super accurate, and I'm going to blend that a little bit with this to make it darker white, and I'm going to put that in on this side. That might be too bright and I can always go back in and add more darker color. So another thing I'd like to do when I finish is just add some white highlights, even if they don't exist the reference, to me, this is fun, I just add little dots. This is very easy to do. It's just little white dots. They don't really do anything for reason for me, but they're my style. So that's why I'm adding them. You don't have to do this. You can be completely done at this stage, and I like to put them also in the clouds that will make it more fun. It's just gives it a magical feeling, and our piece is complete. I hope you enjoyed making this with me and I can't wait to see what you do. So be sure to upload to the project gallery. You can do this with me in real-time, or you can make up your own, or you can use a different reference and do the same thing. Just challenge yourself to copy something and make it your own and a fun way to do that is with landscapes. As you can see, I used very light wash in the background, and I kept it light in the first layer and that I use more paint and less water for the layers after that and that's usually how people work with wash, and that's why it's so versatile and so fun. 12. Yay! You Finished! :): Amazing work on completing the class. I hope you learned a lot, and are excited to utilize all your new skills and put them to practice. Remember, it's all about practice, practice, practice, and even more practice just like any other skill. So put the time in and you'll see results. If you painted along with me, or did your own painting using what you learned from the class, I'd love to see what you made. Post the project to the project gallery in your project section of the class to share your work with me and everyone else. I'm sure you'll inspire them. If you have any questions, leave them in the community section of the class then I'll get back to you as soon as I can. If you want to continue learning from me, check out my other numerous classes. I recommend any watercolor class I have because all those techniques can be used with gouache, and you will master using the medium diluted. I especially recommend the color mixing class, if you're having trouble with mixing colors and figuring out what color palettes to use. There's also classes on the basics of drawing, to draw cute animals, to pen and ink illustration and even on finding your style. You also have access to thousands of super awesome classes just by being on this amazing platform. I encourage you to check those out as well and never stop learning. As always, this has been a great pleasure and I'll see you guys in the next class. Take care and stay awesome.