Watercolor Skies | Elwira Pawlikowska | 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 (29m)
    • 1. 01 intro

    • 2. 02 tools

    • 3. 03 sunny

    • 4. 04 cloudy

    • 5. 05 rainy

    • 6. 06 snowy

    • 7. 07 sunrise

    • 8. 08 night

    • 9. 09 abstract

    • 10. 10 summary

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About This Class


In this class I presented standard "best practices" and less standard tricks useful in painting skies and using watercolors in general.

You'll learn how to (among others):

-easily make different types of clouds

-depict the right mood, weather and time of day

-use tools like salt, gum arabic and paper towel to create interesting and naturally looking textures


Each video is devoted to a different kind of sky - from sunny to apocalyptic, from sky at sunrise to the night sky.

How the sky looks have a huge impact on the atmosphere of the whole painting. Yet, it takes relatively short time to paint it, so it’s extra important to use this time wisely!

The class is dedicated to all watercolor enthusiasts, regardless the level of experience. I hope that you'll find here tips, that will be useful just for you!


Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Elwira Pawlikowska

Illustrator / Designer at Grim Dream


Hi there! I'm Elwira - an illustrator and concept designer based in Stockholm. After getting master's degree in Architecture I started GRIM DREAM - a brand focused on hand-drawn illustrations in an old school, vintage style. I cooperate with game companies, book publishers, and musicians.

I find my inspirations in works of Old Masters, fantasy books, heavy, melodic music and long walks in the woods. My favorite themes are related to steampunk, middle ages, and architecture in general.

In 2017 I got silver "A' Design Award" for concept designs of Rampage System.

Here, on Skillshare, I'm sharing my knowledge and experience I gained during my university studies and my professional career related to designing and drawing architectural objects.

Feel free t... See full profile

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1. 01 intro: I'm NVIDIA, public off. Scott and I work as an illustrator specialized in water colors. I will show you how fast it is, the paint skies that look realistic, atmospheric and professional. You will learn how to They picked the right mood, weather and time off day. Each video is devoted to a different kind of sky from Sonny Tau apocalyptic from sky at sunrise to the night sky. How this guy looks like has a huge impact on the atmosphere off the whole painting. Yet it takes relatively short time to paint it, so it's extra important to use this time wisely. I hope to see a in this class. I did my best to answer your questions and give your personal feedback on the your works. 2. 02 tools: in just a minute, I'll start painting. But first, a little A few words about tools which are necessary or just very helpful in painting skies . Watercolor paper. It doesn't rebuilding its with and follows the paint. The flow on its smoothly palette set off brushes. My choice is a broad brush, which I use only for spreading Clearwater on paper, a quite brought in very self fresh, which I used for painting clutch earlier like skies. For example. Some finger brushes for tasks requiring precision, a chip synthetic brush for placing masking fluid and the old to brush first. Flattering the masking masking fluid form, asking some areas or making textures. Gomorrah Definitely not necessary, but once you start using it, you see how helpful it is as it slows down. Drink of water, color paint and leaves. Color small rivet south for making pictures. I don't use it very often in the case of painting skies, but in Welker's you will see how it works. We will also need a paper teller for wiping excess paint or for creating cute, fluffy clouds. Something more. Yes, water cause 3. 03 sunny: son. This guy should be a nice introduction to the subject. The paper should replace at a delicate ankle to let the pain flow. Really, the first step is super easy painting with a broad brush and clear water, placing gum Arabic. This step is not mandatory, but it can be helpful, the pain that will flow a little slower and the colors will be more vivid after drying. But if you don't have it, you can just skip this. This guy absolutely shouldn't look like a blue parka plane. It can be darker at the top and lighter at the bottom. That's why we should start placing the paint on the top of the paper. The pain should be relatively well diluted now. The paint can be spread with the Web clean brush so it will get lighter and lighter. An important general rule. It's always easier to make a watercolor painting darker by, I think, more paint than lighter by, for example, diluting paint, which is already on the paper. I think that I can definitely make this guy darker. If you feel that the paint gets out of control, we can wipe it with a paper towel You can also add some Citrus clouds by the world at I actually understand, leaving some areas on the paper. I'm touched by water colors. Um, that's it looks minimalistic, but it fits many landscapes. I used exactly the same method, for example, in this artwork. 4. 04 cloudy: just like in the previous video, we should start with clear water. I want you to come Arabic this time. Just spread the paint with this type of brush strokes. Coats can be easily made by wiping the with paint with the paper. Tell us it doesn't look like, but that's not a problem. This time I will use more. Brain is being setting the previous lesson. It's easier to my quarter close talker than lighter, especially in the case of larger areas. - The trick with the paper towel once more, we could actually leave this guy right now. A cloud seemed to be quite glad to avoid this. Glad look. We can add some delicate Cray brown paint in the bottom part of crowds. - This guy looks quite nice and peaceful, but if you'd like to make more dramatic sky like this one, you can make more clouds and set them back a lot. 5. 05 rainy: the paper is always should be placed at a delicate angle. The first step is strangely similar to those from the previous lessons. If you want, you can also put a liar of Gum Arabic, but I will skip this step. This time we can start painting with a homogeneous, yellowish or Grange background. Rainy clouds should be relatively dark in comparison with this kind. We can put even more than just one layer of paint to make them dark enough, but we have to hurry as the background has to be wet. Otherwise, our clouds want blend with it. Naturally, I still think the paper is always helpful in spreading the water color paint, but in this case it's almost mandatory. Just like in the case of the first lesson about the sandy Skype, the paint can be spread with the wet, clean brush. - The results are more visible if we stretch this rainy clouds over some objects in our sin like mountains. In this case, it great an impression of a rain carpet 6. 06 snowy: if you're getting tired of routine Clearwater paint paper towel, I've got goodness. We'll start painting snow a sky who it's masking fluid, an altar of brushes. A perfect, though to Sprinkle it. It's absolutely find that some snowflakes will be bigger as it makes an impression that some of them are just closer. Us. I made more snowflakes in the bottom part. It takes about 15 minutes before masking fluid dries and back to the routine. Clearwater. This time I decided to place then Spain in the middle part. It can say 30 45 minutes until the pain is completely dry and when it ISS, we can remove them asking for it. This would be a superfast painting if we didn't have to make so long breaks. I use similar methods while fading. This illustration. 7. 07 sunrise: back to the routine. Clearwater. This time the background will be quite homogeneous. But this is a great opportunity to exercise, making sand right where the sun especially hidden behind clouds off course. There are also cloudless sunrises, but who want to squeeze as much as possible out of a narc work. When the paint is still wet, we can wipe a fragment of Syria KAL, which will be the same. Then we make sounds. Race in the same booth with a big group is still wet. We can paint some clouds. They will blend nicely with the big crowd, usually clouds on lighters in this kind so we can make them easily by wiping paint. But when the sound is behind clouds during the sunrise, they seem to be actually darker. In this case, I didn't paint dramatic sunrise, but Iowa South to achieve an impression off delicacy of clouds. We will take a look at effect off using South in the last lesson 8. 08 night: If we are planning to paint a night sky with the moon and stars, we need to mask sources of light before starting painting. Otherwise, we can skip this step while the moon is masked Quite precisely. Stars are just sprinkled here and there with a toothbrush. When the fluid is dry, I just pick off drugs which are way too big to be stars. Now this done that procedure Clear water. Of course. Sky at night doesn't have to be blood this night. Actually, probably even if you tried, it could be hard to paint the absolutely a park dark sky with just one layer of paint. I actually like this brighter areas is they suggest clouds which are especially visible during the full moon. - We can even Brighton of the area around that moment when the paint is trying, we can remove the masking fluid. I just felt that the cloud parsley covering the moon would be an interesting addition. Off course. The night could be cloudless, which would make the artwork easier, But that's not our point in this exercise, right? An example off such cloudless, moonless night sky is here inside the pork out 9. 09 abstract: In the case of apocalyptic Germanic skies, we can use all or almost all the tricks presented so far. It's like playing with color and form in order to achieve the right atmosphere beginning. It's rather not very fascinating. I would recommend using gum Arabic here. It will help in creating quite psychedelic patterns. I chose to start painting from making a yellowish breadcrumb. - Red and violet paint was mixed in order to my excitability clouds. The background has to be still a way to achieve this result. Here we can fully use the amazing future of watercolors, unpredictability and high susceptibility to the lightest move off paper and dedicate changes in density off the paint. We can tell the paper more than before. At the same time, we should dilute the paint with a wet brush. - Finally , you can see why I like to use south while I'm painting. I used a very similar method for painting this background. I just started to spread the paint from the bottom right corner and used gold color instead off you 10. 10 summary: - I hope that you found this course helpful are at least interesting and inspiring. If so, it would be great if you could recommend this class also to your friends. Feel free to drop a line in the comment section or write me an email with questions or remarks.