Watercolor Blue Himalayan Poppies | Elizabeth Rohrbaugh | Skillshare

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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

10 Lessons (23m)
    • 1. Himalayan Blue Poppies-Welcome

    • 2. Materials and the First Petal

    • 3. Second Petal

    • 4. Front Petals

    • 5. Complete the First Flower

    • 6. Beginning the Second Stem

    • 7. Overlapping Petals

    • 8. The Final Petal

    • 9. Finish the Painting

    • 10. Congratulations and Thank You!

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About This Class

This watercolor class is appropriate for beginning to intermediate painters. I will teach you how to use a sword or dagger brush, and how to apply the paint in layers to preserve beautiful transparency. This is an excellent exercise to learn how to control the brush stroke and the amount of water in your work. This painting is perfect for a greeting card or a small painting for your home.

Meet Your Teacher

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Elizabeth Rohrbaugh

Watercolor and Acrylic Artist



Well hello there! I'm so glad you're here!! I'm Elizabeth. I am a self taught artist with a love of painting. I primarily paint in watercolor and acrylic and I can teach you to do the same. I'm honored that you've joined me in class! 

Art school isn't a requirement to be an artist so I hope everyone feels comfortable here. I try to break down my lessons into simple steps, with just enough instruction to be helpful, but still allow for your own creativity. Remember, there really are no rules in art! Maybe that's why I love it so much! 

So grab your brushes and some paint and join me in these classes. I'd love to see your paintings too so please feel free to share them in the projects and leave me a review if you're so inclined-I'd be fo... See full profile

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1. Himalayan Blue Poppies-Welcome: Hello. Welcome to my studio. And welcome to my skill share class. My name is Elizabeth Rohrbaugh. I'm a self taught artist, and I paint primarily in watercolor and acrylic. Today's lesson. We're going to paint blue Himalayan poppies and watercolor. There are a lot of quick little tips that I give you and I hope you have a much fun as I did painting it. Please follow me. Also on my instagram and Facebook page under Elizabeth and Rohrbaugh. Thanks. I hope you enjoy the class. 2. Materials and the First Petal: to create the Himalayan blue poppies were going to first start by using either a sword brush or a dagger brush, and you can see it comes to a very angled sharp point. And I'm primarily using the Windsor Newton turquoise that I showed you in the supply list, and I'm creating a small wash puddle over here. I'm loading my brush with paint, but I'm also going to dip back onto the thicker paint that I've got in my well. And I'm going to create the backpedals of a poppy simply by pulling this across and then down and in loading the brush. This way, you naturally get a heavier load of paint at the tip, which gives you that nice room and a more transparent body of the pedal, and you can go back in quickly. While that's still somewhat wet and deep in that color, using either the turquoise or the dark blue that I have listed in my supply list or really any other color. If you prefer to make yellow poppies, you can do the same. Red poppies. Obviously, I prefer the blue. I just loved her. Coy's sort of my signature color. I put it in a lot of my paintings. And here I'm simply dragging some of that color down, pulling it down with the tip to create some of the veins. Very subtle that you would naturally see in a poppy petal. 3. Second Petal: for the second pedal. I'll give you a much closer view. I'm loading my brush in a similar fashion by creating a wash and then adding just a bit more to the tip, and I'm going to lay in this pedal just next to the other one, so starting somewhat down and going up and pulling that back around, I want to make this part of a bit more transparent. You simply wrench your brush blotted off on a paper towel, and with that thirsty brush, pull some of that pigment back out again. If I want to deepen the tips of the pedals, I use just a tiny bit of thicker paint, more concentrated paint on the tip of my brush and move that along the rim that's already been painted and then pull that down just a bit to soften your sort of barely touching that layer of paint. And while there's still water on the paper while this pedal is still wet, that pain will continue to move. So again, with a thirsty brush, I'm just pulling down very slightly to create some irregular color shifts in the pedal and to make it look like it has the veins that poppies often have. I'm going to allow that to dry before I go in and do the next layer over top. And I'm just pulling some of that pigment back out because I want that to be very transparent there. 4. Front Petals: to continue creating the blue poppy. We're going to load our brush in a similar way, deepening the color just slightly and create a pedal over the top of this back. One. Starting here, my pedal is going to swoop down in the front. I'm going to lift up, reload just a little bit and pull that around and again. We want the top of the pedal to be a bit of regular and a bit darker. In my opinion toe highlight the transparency of the pedal farther down, so I've added some deeper color at the top. I'm rinsing my brush, blotting it off, and I'm going to pull some of this color out of the pedal before it's completely dry. You can go back sometimes and pull some of the color lift that when it is dry. But it depends on how permanent the paint is that you're using. Some colors are more permanent than others, and I prefer to do that when it still has some dampness, some using a thirsty brush, which is one that I've rinsed and slightly blotted and pulling some of that color out and you get a beautiful transparency right here where that other pedal is. You can always go back in and deep in the color were needed. I want to add just a tiny bit more there, maybe a little here. While that's still wet, it's still going to move, and I rents my brush. And with just the tip, I go in and just slightly pull that down just a bit to create some of those tiny veins that you see in a poppies pedals and that will fame over time as it dries. Watercolor is typically lighter when it's dry, then when you apply it wet, but it still gives just a gentle indication, and we'll let that pedal dry just for a moment. 5. Complete the First Flower: giving you a broader view again so that you can see more of the flower in its entirety. In that last pedal, we're going to do more of the same. This is dry before I paint over it. If you choose to paint over this while it's wet, it's going to blend and you won't get the sharp pedal definition that we're looking for. I'm actually going to come across this way with the brush and swoop it down and lift up, reload just a bit and do the same. This pedal is actually a bit behind this one, so we're going to blend this out and allow that to come up and round this out here, create a bit of, ah, irregular surface there at the top and again go in with the stronger, concentrated color. Just the edge. We can carry some of that down here as well, where the pedal would darken as the pedals overlap toe. Live some of that color and get the transparency. Use my brush around the bowl of the flower there, and it's just slightly damp, so I'm lifting some of that color and allow it to blend into the bottom. I just want to deepen part of that down here, and I'm going to very carefully carry that bottom portion out of switched to a number six silver and a poppy has such a heavy flower head. I want to just allow this color to flow gradually into that, pulling that down as I work, lifting some of the color there and gently moving it here, and I'm going to pick up a bit of the sap green. It's OK if these colors blend a mixing in just a tiny bit of the dark blue and very gently create the stump. It's always easier to make these thicker as you go than thinner, so I'm starting very thin. Come carrying over that. Just using the tip. You can see the whole flower, and as this portion would meet with the pedals, you would expect to see a dark color. There's more overlap there. We're just going to add a little bit of that dark blue and allow it to bleed up into the flower. And I'm just softening these edges where the water color is still wet and allowing that to blend into the pedal so they had a smooth transition and as the watercolor dries, I mentioned, it does continue to lighten. So I continued to add a bit more pigment before it's completely dry and allow that color to blend softly. Can also, with the dark blue deep in some of the tips of the pedals if you like. And while it's still wet, it's going to move like that, which I think is just beautiful. So I often will add just a little bit more and let that continue to blend with the turquoise. We've only used three colors so far, so this is a very simple exercise for beginners. You don't need to have a lot of materials, and you're repeating the same strokes multiple times to create the pedal. Okay, there's the first poppy. 6. Beginning the Second Stem: going to create a second poppy over here to balance the composition just a bit, and I'm going to make it slightly smaller in a bit lighter. I want the attention right there on that one, and perhaps this one floats over in this direction a bit, so my pedals may fold this way. I'm using the edge of that dagger brush to create the back part of the pedals in carrying it down to the center. I can deepen those edges just a bit with the turquoise again. Perhaps a little down here. If you ever feel that it's too much, you rent your brush and blotted off and dab some of that away. I did show purple in my supply list, so we're going to add just a tiny bit of that Carpizo, Violet, just to give some variety in this pedal just a tiny bit. It blends very nicely with the turquoise going to add just a tiny bit up there, create some depth and some variety for the I, and I want to smooth this transition here. So I'm just very gently tickling is a good way to describe this with the edge of the brush 7. Overlapping Petals: for the second pedal. I'm going to just create a small as if this poppy isn't quite open yet just another overlapping. This will still be in the background. So I'm keeping it rather light smoothing that down. They're very much a bowl shaped flower, and I love the transparency that we have right here. So the biggest challenge often in water coloring is to make your mark and leave it alone. I know I'm still challenged with that, and I've been painting for years. I'm just smoothing this out, pulling some of that liquid a way to make that a smoother transition there. And I'm going to add just a tiny bitter that violet again to this side because I think it gave a nice little highlight to the to the pedal. And just along the edge I blotted my brush. Princeton blotted, and I'm just tickling the edge of that to soften and allow that violet to carry down to here, and we'll let that one dry 8. The Final Petal: going to create one more pedal on this flower. I'm giving you a close up view and I want this to be sort of a floppy. Ah, a loose pedal. So I'm going to start over here again with the the sword or dagger brush and wiggle a bit. I wanted to swoop in over here. So this is going toe kind of lay over a bit like that. I'm going to deepen this part to Southern. It meets. I want this to be sort of rounded and look natural, dark in the tops. And while this is still moving wet, the water's moving. I'm adding just a bit more color there with the turquoise. And I'm also going to add just a tiny bit of that the violent that I have in the list. And it sort of indicates that center part of the poppy at the bottom On this one, we've darkened because it has a stem. This one, we will do the same and allow that to move. I'm also going to add just a tiny bit up here. I like the effect of that violent with the turquoise on the tip of that pedal in the same here adds a little bit more definition to the pedal that's out in front. The ones here in the back are sort of faded, so you would expect this one to be a deeper color, a little bit stronger. I'm just blending this down with the very edge of my brush. Very little water at this point, but it is not a dry brush. It is still damp, and I'm going to loosen this just a bit to soften. It's a really light touch and similar to this one. I want to carry that down into the stone wall. It's still slightly wet, so I'm gonna use my number six brush and just pick up a little bit of the turquoise and the purple. It really doesn't matter. I just want this to move and not be a stark, um, end to the flower. So I want those colors to blend really nicely. There a little bit of the violet to carry that down and then rinse your brush and you can pick up some of the sap green. At this point and with a very light touch, I'm barely holding my brush. It's gonna swoop that down 9. Finish the Painting: At this point, you can go back in and add some minor details. If you want to deepen any of the areas that have dried a bit lighter, you can add some darker color. Sometimes the poppy stems will have very small little wisps of greenery. If you'd like to add some of those to soften it, you want her to over here and I would call that finished. I really love the transparency that we have over here and the contrast between the really dark colors and the light. You could add some some center, um, dark statement, if you'd like, hear popping out. But I like how the pedals have folded over and it looks the same here that those air hidden inside and you just see the beautiful luminosity of the turquoise. I hope you've enjoyed this class. If you have, please follow me on my Facebook page. Elizabeth and Rohrbaugh and the same on Instagram 10. Congratulations and Thank You!: I hope you enjoyed that tutorial and I hope you follow me and join in on future skill share classes. Visit my website Elizabeth and Rohrbaugh dot com. And there you'll find my Facebook and Instagram platforms following me there. I enjoy painting Live and tag me in some of your results. I would love to see what you've painted. Thanks again.