Watercolor Floral Typography | Ash Bush | 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

6 Lessons (16m)
    • 1. Intro

    • 2. Supplies

    • 3. Sketching Our Letter

    • 4. Sketching Florals

    • 5. Watercolor Basics

    • 6. Painting Our Letter

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About This Class


Learn to create watercolor floral type to create beautiful artwork to display around your home, gift to a friend, or sell in your shop!

We'll be going over the basics of creating a letter using florals and greenery, things like

  • Sketching letters
  • Planning floral placement and proper layout
  • And ultimately breaking down how to paint with watercolor

Our project will consist of creating one capital letter completely constructed from florals!

To follow me:

www.ashbush.com // Instagram

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Ash Bush

Calligrapher // Pen Maker // Watercolor Artist


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1. Intro: Hi, I'm Ashleigh Bush. I'm a calligrapher and watercolor invitation designer and today will be working on a fun project. Where will create watercolor floral typography? So will construct letters out of flowers will be going through the process of sketching out our letters in a script style hand, then will plan out our composition and layout and construct the down strokes and up strokes of our letter using greenery, flowers and different plants. Once our letters constructed will go through the basics of painting with watercolors. I'm excited to get started on this project and see what awesome work you're create. 2. Supplies: All right, let's talk about supplies. First off, we'll need some watercolor paper. I prefer cancer and brand. This is £140. Cold press 11 by 15 inches. Honestly, you'll be good with any watercolor paper. Next, we'll need some watercolor paints. I got this set off Amazon for like 15 bucks. I think it's the Michaels Storebrand. Whatever watercolors you have will work next up. Our brushes. I prefer to use pen, tell awkward brushes. The body is filled with water, so when you squeeze it, the water comes out into the brush. I also use a big size 12 brush and a small size four brush, plus a pencil for sketching. And last but not least, we'll need some reference images. What I did was go through my backyard with my camera. You could use your phone whatever, and I just took pictures of every flower and plant that I saw. So go for a walk outside, hop on your bike, go to the local park. It's always good to use your own photos, and then there's no chance of copyright infringement. If you don't have a camera, don't want to take your own pictures. Whatever. You can always go to free images dot com and search for flowers. All right, let's get started 3. Sketching Our Letter: All right, let's start by sketching or letter. I'm gonna do a more simple letter I'm gonna do l. You don't have to do it in a script hand. Do whatever L you want and then this is where the down stroke of the letter is. So it's the thickest part of the letter, and we'll fill that with the flowers and all the foliage and greenery. And then in the thin hairlines at the end of the L, that's where the vines and smaller leaves will go. 4. Sketching Florals: All right, let's start building on our letter. We're gonna take our reference images and just start sketching in our leaves and our flowers, and I'll start erasing my letter a little bit, so it's just kind of a faint guideline. But I'm gonna start with the thickest part of the letter the middle of the down stroke, where the biggest swell is and I'm just going to start sketching arose. I'm going to start with the pedals and just really loose. We don't We're not getting realistic. We're not gonna go for super detailed going to keep it loose and painterly. So just start in the middle of the rose and start building out a basic sketch for it. And I start with the biggest flower first, and then I'm gonna go around and build it up with some smaller flowers and add variation. So all, um, hot back and forth from the top of where I started to the bottom and I kind of, like, build out just so I can maintain balance throughout then. So as I work out towards the thinner parts of my letter, that's when I'm gonna go to my reference material, and I'm gonna find smaller plants. Those are gonna be things like vines or thin leaves or little sprigs of Berries. So when we want to flesh out the thick down stroke, that's when we're you know, we're gonna go look for those big, full blooms and, um, like a little bouquet of wildflowers will put in there or, you know, some hydrangeas there in a big bunch. Uhm, maybe some of those thicker leaves. That's where will build it up in the center of our down stroke and then, as we work out, will make the leaves go from bigger to smaller, and then we'll have small blades of grass, small vines all the way out to the very end. 5. Watercolor Basics: art. So before we get started on our sketch, I'm gonna teach you some basics of watercolor. Specifically floral watercolor. So we want to start lightest first. Think of it as we're building up three or four layers. So I got this reference image off of free images dot com and you'll notice, um, we're gonna pay attention to the really, really light almost white parts of the flower. The medium tones the pink and then the really dark on the inside of a flower. So we're gonna work from the outside in because it goes lightest to darkest, But we want to get the overall basic shape of the flower, and this is really loose. Doesn't have to be exact. Just kind of the basic shape of the leaf. Um, loosen your arm up. Don't you know? Try and get too much control over it. So for these first parts, you could almost even just use water. But I like to use a very little bit of paint to get that first light layer, and then I build up from there. So once I have that first lightest layer, I'm going to go in just a little bit darker and put in those shadows that I see on the pedals, not super exact just in the general area. So we're just building. Our layers are foundation and then our secondary layer a little bit darker. So next I'm going to go in with the darkest shade of pink, and that's going to be at the bottom of the pedals. Oh, it's much easier to think of watercolor in those layers of light and dark. When I was in art school, my watercolor professor made us paint our take our reference image and flip it upside down so that we weren't trying to paint a mouth or trying to paint A knows what we were doing. It forces to look at the picture in terms of light and dark. So here's where the highlight is. Here's where the shadow is, and then you turn it over and you're like, Wow, it's a face that was always a really helpful principle for me. 6. Painting Our Letter: All right, let's do this. Let's get started painting our letter. We're gonna take those watercolor basics that we just learned. We'll use our big size 12 brush at first, and we're just gonna go in Riel, Light and Messi. Don't worry about staying within the lines or anything. I work from the center of the down strokes of the thickest flour, and I worked my way out. I don't think it really matters where you start. That's just where I start and you can do any colors. You can follow the reference image colors or put your own spin on it. You know, do blue leaves or purple leaves or something. You can make it your own. Remember, don't try to garner too much control over this part, but the water and paying go where it wants to go. Let the different colors bleed into each other. We'll go back and we'll add detail. Not timeto. Get caught up in perfectionism. When you're doing leaves, blades of grass, one big leaf or a branch of different leaves, especially leaves, make sure that you're using different shades of green or whatever color. You don't want one leave to just be all one flat green color. And that's where using the water really helps because it'll be really light in one area, and then you can put some darker like a little, maybe a little bit of brown. We're out of touch of red somewhere. Remember, with shadows and highlights. It's not just a darker green or gray. The shadows are colors from the other plants around it, bouncing off of it. So you know the red from the rose. If that's bleeding into the leaf, that would make sense tohave a little bit of a red hint toe part of the leaf because that color would be bouncing off of that leaf in real life. If we were looking at it, I'm going to switch to my smaller size four brush and start adding more detail. I'm going a little bit darker this time. You add some smaller shadows, not working quite a big, and I always use a principle of keeping the light colors on the outside of the flower, and it gets darker as the pedal works its way in and kind of the same for leaves darker at the bottom. And then I go in and add the veins on the leaves. Little things to make it look just slightly more realistic. This is my third layer, where I'm going in a little bit darker and you'll see certain shape. And now I'm going to go in with the darkest final layer. And this is where I might be a little bit more. Have a little bit more attention to detail My final touch. I'll take some white acrylic Pete and just put little highlights in. My flowers are on one spot of my leaf. It adds a nice contrast, or I'll put paints, bladders around it or something. Finished piece. I'm excited to see everybody's project. Thanks for watching.