Watercolor Practice for Beginners/ Painting Sunsets with Watercolor | Elena Fay | Skillshare

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Watercolor Practice for Beginners/ Painting Sunsets with Watercolor

teacher avatar Elena Fay, Watercolor Artist & Fashion Illustrator

Watch this class and thousands more

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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 (44m)
    • 1. Hello Friends

      1:20
    • 2. Art Supplies

      4:51
    • 3. Creating Your Own Watercolor Palette

      1:51
    • 4. Warm Up/ Watercolor Techniques

      2:23
    • 5. Warm Up/ Watercolor Washes

      7:38
    • 6. Choosing Colors

      2:37
    • 7. Sunset 1 / part 1

      7:29
    • 8. Sunset 1 / part 2

      5:46
    • 9. Sunset 2

      8:28
    • 10. GIVEAWAY!!!

      1:32
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About This Class

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Hi everyone!

Welcome to my new watercolor class for beginners!

Let’s paint super fun and easy watercolor sunsets together.

This class ranges from a beginners level to intermediate. You’ll learn how to create gorgeous watercolor sunsets using a few simple techniques! We'll review the materials you'll need, walk through a few basic techniques, practice crating watercolor washes, and then you’ll complete your own watercolor sunset paintings from start to finish.

And along the way you will:

  • Learn and practice new techniques
  • Increase your watercolor skills
  • Enjoy working with watercolor   

Post your project to the project gallery so we can all cheer you on! And if you post your final project to Instagram, be sure to tag me (@elenafay_art) for a chance to be featured! 

GIVEAWAY!!!

At the end of the class I will announce a giveaway where you have a chance to win fun prizes by sharing your projects.

This Giveaway will run for 3 months-April, May and June of 2019. Winners will be randomly chosen, contacted and announced at the end of each month.

Happy painting friends!

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Elena Fay

Watercolor Artist & Fashion Illustrator

Teacher

Hi everyone, welcome to my creative playground:)

I'm a self-taught fashion illustrator, dreamer and explorer.

I started my blog in March, 2012 to share my passion for art and fashion. Over the years this space evolved and became a creative outlet to share things I love, my inspiration and everything creative.

Creating art for individual clients and big brands is a dream come true because every day I can play with my favorite paints and call it a job!

Creating is my biggest passion and I'm so excited that I can share and inspire you to create as well! I hope you enjoy my classes and have fun making some colorful mess!

You can find me on

Instagram / Blog / Pinterest

And subscribe to my blog for freebies and fun updates.

See full profile

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Transcripts

1. Hello Friends: Hi, I'm Alina Flee, watercolor artist, fashion illustrator and founder off Elena Way that come. I'm very excited to be back with another watercolor class, and this class is all about painting beautiful sunsets. I will show you all art materials we need for this project. We'll start with basic warmup activities. Practice weapon. Where technique. We'll do some blending exercises, and then we'll create lovely watercolor landscapes. This class is great both for beginners and advanced artists. If you never worked with watercolor before, no problem. I will show you step by step, how to mix colors and the use different techniques for creating watercolor artwork. And if you're not a beginner, but you want to improve your skills and learn some new painting tricks, you are in the right place. I hope you will enjoy this class and get inspired to play with water colors. I also have a surprise for you guys. At the end of the class I will announce to give away were a few students. Pablo. They work will receive our gifts from me. I can't wait to see all your projects, so get your brushes ready and let's get started. 2. Art Supplies: Let's start with art materials that you need for this quest. If you are a beginner, choosing the right materials can be overwhelming because there is a very big variety off materials, depending on quality price or brand name. So if you're just starting out, I wonder command to find something affordable, and he can always upgrade your supplies later. So by the basic set, which is what a carpet plane set and a few brushes over the years, I've tried a lot of different brands off paper and pains, and today I will show you some of my favorites. You can consider using them as well, where you can use anywhere color supplies you already have. If you go back to my previous class of watercolor for beginners, you will find more information about our supplies There. I explained all types of paper, paints and brushes, and here I'll show you what I use for this particular project. So let's start with paper for this project. I'll be using fluid hot press 100% cotton paper. Currently, it's my favorite watercolor paper because I do a lot of fashion illustrations and this paper is very smooth and perfect for adding small details. Paper is one of the most important things on our list. So for this project, I would recommend using watercolor paper that is at £140.100 percent cotton. So when you work with pains and add a lot of water, your paper doesn't buckle horrible, and he can tell if it's 100% Cottam by the label on the packaging. Next, you'll need the watercolor peas and you want to call a paints. You have will be fined for this project, and you have a lot of flexibility. When it comes to pains. You can use them in soups, open sets as long as it's watercolor. These are my favorite watercolors that I currently use all the time here. I have a pen set by Winsor and Newton, and on this ballot I have a mix off watercolors in tubes by different brands. I think I have about four brands here. In the next video, I will include a short clip about using watercolor in soups and how usually create my own watercolor palette. And now let's talk about brushes here. I have a few brushes in different shape and size. The 1st 1 is a wash brush and will use it for large washes like painting the sky or background and also reading the paper. The 2nd 1 is a more brush by Divinci, and it's a brush number two. I mentioned this brush many times. It's the one of my favorite watercolor brushes, and I use it all the time, even though it looks very big and doesn't have any shape when it's dry. But when you dip it in the water, you will see that has a very pointy tip. It's a very versatile brush. It holds a large volume off for which makes it excellent for different techniques. Then the last one is a small brush form, heading little details, and a small brush will be fine. Here I have two jars off cold clean. Vohra tryto would using warm, especially hot water for painting with watercolors because it will ruin your brushes. Berrick Week. We will also need pencil the razor and paper towels for cleaning the brushes and removing excess water. If you work on the watercolor pad where all pages are glued, you can paint the reckless there. I'll be working on a single sheet of paper, and to prevent it from buckling, I will take it down with masking tape to the board. You can use a special what a proof board. I'm just going to use the back side of my watercolor pad. We'll also need the palate for mixing paint, and you can use a pilot or white ceramic plate as long as it's white and has nice, smooth surface. So it's easier for you to see what colors here mixing. So here is all we need for the class, and again it's watercolor paper, planes, brushes, two jars of water, pencil, paper towel, masking tape and the board. One of the most important things here is paper. So if you decide to invest in art supplies, I order Command to start with paper and get a good quality 100% cotton paper. You can find the list of all the supplies for this project in the class downloads 3. Creating Your Own Watercolor Palette: In this very short video, I will show you how to build your own watercolor palette using water college tubes. What I usually do when I want to create a new ballot is I start with watercolor switches. I would put all my water college tubes on desk, starting with reds than yellow tones, blues and greens, and then our paint swatches on a big size paper. Then I will choose colors I like and the ones I think I will use the most. So, for example, if you paint a lot of greenery, you don't need a lot of green and yellow tones. I have personally paint a lot of fashion illustrations, so I have a lot of skin tones, some bright tones and just a few green tones in depends on your painting style. So when you selected all your callers, squeeze the paint on the palate and let it dry for 24 hours. If you don't let it dry and start using it right away, you can waste a lot off pain because what a caller out of tubes is really saturated and kind of liquid. So if you dip your brush in this paint, you'll have a lot off pigment on the bristle, and most likely, you're not going to use it all and you will just wash it off, which is a waste. I usually let it dry for 24 hours and then use it like a pan set. Also, when the paint is dry, I would make a reference chart that can feed in this palette. I caught a small piece of paper that can feed in the palate and put all the colors I have here. So next time when I'm painting, I can quickly look at this card and decide what colors to use. So it's a great reference chart. 4. Warm Up/ Watercolor Techniques: before we start painting, let's do a few warm up exercises blade with the brush. Get to know all paper and paints better. It will help you to be more comfortable with your art supplies and more confident working on the largest size paper. So let's refresh all basic knowledge of water called techniques, and let's do a few were simple exercises. When it comes to war color, you can paint on wet surface or on dry surface, so the 1st 1 is wet on wet technique. And the second is a wet on dry technique weapon where technique is when you apply water first and then add paid on top. What I'm gonna do is I dip my brush in clean water, read the paper and then, at some point on this lead surface. This technique is perfect for creating big and soft washes without any harsh lines, because colors blend together where a smoothly while working in this technique, you have less control over your paid because the pigment can flow around on that surface. So I wonder command to experiment with the amount of water and paint you ed. After playing the first layer off paint, you can add more years. It can be the same color, but more intense with more pigment or a different color. Because he worked on the bed surface, the paint creates very smooth, radiant and bland's very nicely. And this technique is great for painting, landscapes and big backgrounds, and if I move the page, you will see how pigment just flows around on that surface. So when you paint a bad on the technique, make sure the paper is wet enough. But don't add too much water. Otherwise, it will be hard to control the paint and it will take forever to dry. And the second technique is painting on dry paper. This technique is great if you want to get a sharp ages or fine details, and you will also have more control over your brush and painting process in general. And here I just did my brush and paint, get a lot of pigment and start painting on dry paper. And here you can see that even if I'm off the page, pain stays where I applied it and doesn't flow around. Compared to the first wet on wet technique 5. Warm Up/ Watercolor Washes: And now let's practice painting very simple collar washes. The 1st 1 will be very smooth wash using just one color in the 2nd 1 will practice how to go from dark to light color and in the last one will create gradient using different colors here, just a few quick tips that will help you to create nice watercolor bush. One of the most important things to keep in mind before starting a watercolor wash is you need to mix enough paint, especially if you work on the largest size paper. This way. You don't have to stop in the middle of your work to make small pain because of what color dries very quickly, and while you're mixing, you paint, the first layer can already start drying. If you're using watercolor pan, set to activate or wake up your pains, simply add a few drops off clean, cold water to your pigment. You can also use the spray bottle, and you can find it at any our supply store. I will show you how I usually make stepping. So first I deep the brush in the clean water on, and while the brush is still wet, I get a lot off pigment from the paid set and more to the ceramic plate off ballot. Now I need to get more border to this mix, and I can simply leave the brush in the water without washing it and get a few drops to the palate. And I can repeat the step until I have enough water. It's a very simple step, but what I don't like about it is if I use dark colors, what I get story right away and I have to change it. And also, if I work on large backgrounds and need a lot off paint mix, I have to repeat the step over and over again, and I can make a lot of mass on my desk. So instead of dipping the brush in jar, I use simple, strong and add more water to the niks like this. For big watercolour washes, it's very easy to mix a lot off paint using tubes. Just quiz some paint on a palette at some water, and using your brush makes it very well until there is no tiny pieces off paint. And now let's practice painting very simple collar washes. One of the tricks of getting a perfect Flatbush is tooting your page at a slight angle when you killed your painting. Your allow gravity to move pigment towards the age, and as a result, you're not gonna have water or paint pedals on the page. Make sure you have enough beans and clean water. Hold the award at a slight angle. I usually just put something under the boards, so it's about 40 degree angle. I'm going to get some paint on my brush and we'll start painting on dry paper. I will start at the top, make one breast joke, and here I have a dark hanging job off paint or we can call it pain bead. So what happens next is when I played another line. This bead will gradually flow towards at the age, creating very smooth transition between two lines. It kind of prevents this area from drying and having Karsh lines. So this hanging drop or pain to be it is another trick off getting smooth watercolor wash. So I will continue painting the wash, repeating the same steps and making sure that I still have the hanging drop. So the bushes, nice and smooth. You can see the pigment didn't even stick to the paper here, and sometimes it happens. Maybe I put wax crayons on top of the page, or maybe kids touching the paper with 30 hands. So there is some kind of a resist effect from paper, and I'm not gonna worry about it. I'll just go with the flow on and not going to try to fix it, because what happens with watercolor, the more you try to fix the mess. Here it looks what I'm almost done with the wash. I need to remove the hanging drop. Otherwise, when the painting tries, there will be flower effect, and it's very easy to remove it. I will try my brush with paper towel, gentle touch of the paint drop and it's gone so the brush works. Just like the sponge in our second wash will practice going from dark and saturated color to light and diluted color. Make sure you have enough beans and clean water. The process at the beginning is pretty much the same as we did while painting our first wash, so dipped the brush and paint and do two or threes chokes. Next, I gently deep the brush in water I'm not gonna wash the paint off, so don't shake your brush too much. Just deep it. Get rid of access off water and let's paint another line. I will repeat the steps of keeping the brush in water, and you can see that are wash has very nice Grady in from dark collar, two very light tone. This technique is perfect for painting backgrounds and sky. So practice of this type off watercolor wash until you feel really confident in the amount of what are used and controlling the paint booth. Oh, and for the last one, let's use three or four colors. Feel free to use any color you like. I have the paint here on the ballot, and I will start with yellow. I'm gonna deep the brush and paint, get a lot of pigment. I will do about two strokes and then we'll move to the next color before moving to the next car. I will wash my brush, get rid off yellow pigment, and now I can get all red meat. Also paid attention to the hanging job, so you're gradient is nice and small. Next, I will take purple, do a few strokes and Then maybe I will go with ultra Marine. And every time you go from one color, see another. Make sure your brushes queen way Have very nice radiant with pecan collars. 6. Choosing Colors: Now let's talk about colors that will be using for this piece. I'm sure you saw sunsets with a wide variety of colors where all tones blend together nicely. And if you want to create something specific, feel free to use any colors you like. Here's a color combination that I really love and chose for this piece. The colors are used are cereal and blue, ultra marine, blue, purple, orange, yellow, pink and some green tones for the middle part. And before painting the actual piece, I order Command to test how your colors blend together. Let's start with small swatches of old collars. I'm using lemon yellow, which is very bright orange over rose. You can use any pink color. You have purple, ultra marine blue and some cerulean blue for the top part of the sky. And now let's see how they blend together. Basically, I will put them in the same order just very close to each other so we can see how they react and what colors they will give us. And you can use this example as a color chart for your piece. It's a good idea to test your Carla combinations and see what to expect, so you will have a bad idea what colors to use for your artwork. And here's a quick tip. Colors that are across each other on the color wheel are complementary for opposite colors , so when you put them next to each other, they will complement each other, and the colors will just pop. For example, purple and yellow, green and red, blue and orange. But when you mix them, you can get brownish or gravestones, depending on the color, intensity and the amount of pigment to get, you can get like different magic tones, so I will avoid this color combinations for ourselves in the last one. I'm sure you know that blue and yellow makes green, so I will award this combination as well. By now, we already did some warm up exercises and you know, what color is he gonna use for the painting? So let's get started and paint on sunset 7. Sunset 1 / part 1: Even though this piece may look complicated, I will show you very simple steps. So even if you're just starting out with watercolor, you can easily create beautiful watercolor sunset. Some now we already for the project. I'll be painting on a single piece of paper, and to protect it from buckling, I will take it down to the board. If you have a special waterproof board, that's amazing. If not, don't worry about it. You can use any hardboard you have. For example, I'll be using the backside off my old watercolor pad. I'm gonna put the paper in the middle off the board yet the masking tape and tape it down on each side. Just keep in mind that you can take your tape off on Lee when the painting is completely dry, because you can easily damage your paper. If you try to remove the tape while painting is still wet, you can remove small pieces off paper along with it, so it's better to wait until the paper is completely dry. Also, some types of paper don't like masking tape, so I would recommend to test it on the back side of the paper and see if the tape comes off very easily now our paper is ready and I will put something out of the board to get a slight angle. Also was great about masking tape is when the painting is joy and the tape is removed. Will have very clean and sharp frame around the painting, and it will look really nice with tested L collars, and we know what we're gonna use for this piece. If you decided to go with the same colors as me, final piece will look similar to this one. We'll paint off first sunset in a wet on wet technique, and we'll start with reading the paper with big brush, and then they will apply Queen on top of that, and when our main background layer is dry, will add burns and other details like grass and trees. Using a wet on dry technique, let's take a bit brush and cover the whole paper with clean water. I usually apply water in horizontal motion and then make sure there is no battles of water . When you work with on their technique, you have to work where quickly because in some spots paint can dry really fast and to achieve a soft, radiant look and transition from one quality another. Make sure that everything is ready. So check your pains, Quinn. Water and brushes. I will divide the page in three equal parts and top two parts. I believe for this cry and the bottom part for the water and some grass. I didn't put any passing marks, but he can drove her. Likely where you want to paint your horizon line. Feel free to fourth year horizon line in the middle of the page for a little bit below. The sum is the light of spot on the sky, and you can leave it white opened it with very light yellow. I go grab yellow pigment being some marks on top and a few strokes below the horizon line so it will look like the reflection in the water. I will add some yellow here and maybe a few strokes here. Now I will grab some orange paint and put it next to yellow. Some pain just flows down, and it's totally fine. It doesn't have to be perfect if you have too much pain in one spot, just gentle them around. And because our paper is still wet, the pigment will just flow around, creating very soft look. I will quit my brush to get some pink paint and add some strokes next to orange and yellow colors. I'm kind of surrounding yellow and orange parts with pink paint. So when I end the blue and purple, there will be no magic colors on our sky painting. I will add more pink in the middle and a little bit on top, as I mentioned earlier. If you makes purple with yellow or orange, it will give you grey or brown magic tones. So I will try to a wooded here and will add purple Onley on Pink War around pink color. Now I'm going to take purple color and added, on top of being core next to it, I will add some purple on top and a few brush jokes in the middle. I can see that the top corner is almost dry. So before adding paint, I will add some water with clean brush, and for the top part, I will use cerulean blue and ultramarine blue. Now, if you tilt your paper even a little bit, the colors will gradually flow into each other. creating very soft book. I see that I have too much water on the page and some water battles next to the masking tape. So what I'm gonna do is I take a very small piece off paper towel, just gently attaching the paddle. It works like a sponge, and also I will wife the masking tape, so there is no mess around. I feel like this piece looks a little bit faded and there is no intense colors, so I want to add more brightness. And for that I will grab more figment and added in different spots. Right now, our colors may look really bright and saturated, but when what? I apologize, it kind of loses the intensity so it will have more soft. - Now I'll background is almost done. Let's let it try. You can let it dry naturally, or if you're impatient like me, you can use a hair dryer, and it will take less than a minute. And when it's completely trying, will add birds, trees and some grass using birth on try technique 8. Sunset 1 / part 2: Now our background is completely trying. So let's add some details. You can use any small watercolor brush you have. My brush has very pointed cheap, which is great for adding small details. Let's start with birds in the sky, and you can use any dark color you have. It can be brown, black or even purple. I will paint a few birds on some hope. A smaller sum will be bigger and a tiny one in the corner, so it looks like this birds is really far away when, without, with birds on its at some trees on the horizon line, you can make some pencil marks or you can paint directly with brush. We're not going to add to money details for trees. I'm making very loose brush marks just to give the idea off trees on the background, but not too many details, and I playing them so lose because I didn't want the trees to be the main focus of the painting. Also, pay attention to your water. I'm gonna switch mine, and that's why it's so great to have two jars off Warren because you can quickly switch without stopping painting. Now let's get some green beans and add some trees. I kind of the brown with my brush, giving the trees very loose. Look, let's make them in different height so it doesn't look to Steve and boring. Now I want to add some reflection in the water. I'm gonna clean my brush, get some water and what the area below the horizon line. Let's magic a little bit and add a few thin lines on the water. Now let's add some grass, which will be right at the bottom of the painting. You can use any brown color you have, or you can makes purple with orange and evil. Get dark, brownish tone. I'm still using small brush to get very thin lines. I want to make a kind of dry brush chokes so I will get some paint. But I don't have a lot of water on my brush. If you're not sure about how much water to use, get the paint in the brush. Gentle touch of the paper towel to remove the access of quarter and try this brush strokes on the scrap of paper. You can see that I have better that ties the paper. I tried to live the smarts with its heap of the brush. I think I will stop here because if we aired too much grass, it will look busy and my C so just a few will be fine. Now let's add a few brain. Choose it with leaves. Uh, we can stop right here, or we can add more branches on each side, so there will be an illusion that we are kind of peeking out from trees. I will get more pigment of my brush and add a few more branches. - By now, the trees on the horizon line are dry and add some contrast. I will get some dark paint and add a few marks. You can play around even that some color if you like, I will add if you brush strokes with purple. But now I think it's time to stop. Otherwise we can overdo it, and it will look busy and messy. And sometimes he was so in the process. It's really hard to stop when I feel that I'm very close to over doing it. I will just step back for a few minutes and then come back. Look at the painting, and if I like it is great to stop right here. Our first sunset is done. I really hope. Injure the process. And now let's move to the next project. And don't forget to remove the masking tape when your paper is completely dry. 9. Sunset 2: welcome back in this exercise, we are going to paint beautiful starry sky this time who create colorful, radiant, using almost the same colors as we did in our previous exercise. And we'll also be using wet on wet technique. What, We're gonna use this technique a little bit differently. I already prepared my paper and tape it down onto the board with masking tape so it doesn't bark a lorry. People, when I add a lot of water, make sure you have your pains, rashes, clean water so everything is ready. And now let's talk pain team, just like you know previous exercise. I will give the brush in clean water and apply a layer of water to paper. I will switch to Big Brush to make sure that there is no water pedals on paper, and he can use medium or big brush. Whatever you feel more comfortable working with when the paper is wet, let's add some color and the first color will be ultramarine blue. I want to make this top corner really dark, so I will get a lot of pigment and make a few strokes because our paper is wet. Pigment just flows around and it's a pure magic watching how watercolor, please on the paper. Now the stick purple and paint on top off ultramarine on next to so they can mix up together, you can tilt your page a little bit so this two collars flow into each other. Next, I will take Oprah Rose. Feel free to use any pink are you have and I go paint on top of purple and a few strokes below way are going from really dark to light, and our next color will be orange. So let's get some pigment and paint on top off pink and next to it. Next, I will add a little bit of yellow and at the bottom I will add more people. I will sealed paper again. Let all the colors move around, which will create really nice and vibrant radiant. In the end, I want to add some split there with white acrylic paint and to make white paid to pop up. We need this corner to be really, really dark, so I will get more ultramarine balloon and add a few layers. How background is almost ready. You can let it dry naturally will use a hair dryer, which will take less than a minute when the papers dry. I'm going to add trees, grass and a little bird. Feel free to use any details. Always Cee Lo at sea want. I'll go with my small brush, get some brown color and start painting a tree. What you paint branches or trees are. Add a different pressure on your brush so it will give you from very thin to thick marks, which will give you really interesting look to make the tree look natural. I'm not painting just trade lines. I'm adding the variety and painting some sticks longer, some shorter and some of them in different directions. So at some variety. - Next , I want to add some grass at the bottom of the page, and I'll be using the same brown color. Let's pain some grass. I'm barely touching the paper on and leaving really seen lines with the tip off my brush. If your lines are to think, maybe you have too much water on your brush. Just gently waved the brush with paper towel and add a few dry brush strokes. Next, I'm going to add the little birds sitting on the grass and you can paint any silly at you want. Oh, you can't keep the step other side of the painting. It looks a little bit lonely, so I'm gonna add another trace year. And now let's add some stars using white acrylic paint to make a paint splatter. You can use any bar she have. It can be watercolor acrylic brush. Just don't forget to wash it after using acrylic paint, because if it drives, it can really a brush. Oh, you can use a toothbrush and later I will show you how. Prepare some acrylic paint on the palate, dipped the brush, then point the brush to the spot where you want to add this platter and gently tap with your finger. And you can also add splatter with a toothbrush, which can be a little bit messy. So if you're painting your computer or other stuff, I would recommend to cover your things with paper town. Just experiment. Try different techniques, and that's how you can find your favorite. Now my painting is dry, and I will start removing masking tape very gently and carefully, so I don't damage the paper and look at this nice and Chris frame that we have. After removing masking tape, our second project is finished. I really hope you enjoyed the process and had fun painting with watercolors. 10. GIVEAWAY!!!: I really hope you enjoyed the class, had a lot of fun painting with watercolors and learned something new. Today I can't wait to see a sunsets. So please don't be Shari and share your projects in the class project section and every Friday, all the sharing old projects on my instagram. If you are just starting out with watercolors and some techniques feel frustrating to you, my advice would be Don't get discouraged practice and enjoy the process. And if you have any questions, don't hesitate to leave your questions in this section below. I'll be hyped to help. And now, as I mentioned earlier, I'm gonna do a giveaway for you guys. The giveaway will run for three months, April, May and June. By the end of each month, I will randomly choose to winners and will send some fun gifts for me, which is a coloring book fashion prince and some hand painted cards. Entering the EU is very easy. All you have to do is upload your fun project. The Venus will be chosen randomly, so don't worry about your skill level or the quality off the photo. And don't be shy to share your work This is not the competition based on your skills. This is just a creative challenge. I encourage you to experiment with your art supplies blade with watercolors and enjoy the process.