Watercolour technique: Learn how to paint a squirrel | Peter Jochems | Skillshare

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Watercolour technique: Learn how to paint a squirrel

teacher avatar Peter Jochems, Artist, Vlogger, Teacher

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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 (40m)
    • 1. 01 Introduction

    • 2. 02 Materials

    • 3. 03 Watercolor techniques

    • 4. 04 Tracing the line art

    • 5. 05 Working with graphite pencil

    • 6. 06 The brown fur

    • 7. 07 The white fur

    • 8. 08 The eye

    • 9. 09 Reflecting on how to proceed

    • 10. 10 The grass

    • 11. 11 The finishing touches

    • 12. 12 Challenge

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About This Class

In this class we are going to paint a squirrel step by step. You can use the line art provided in this class to trace the outlines and follow my instructions to paint the squirrel.

It's a fun little project!

Meet Your Teacher

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Peter Jochems

Artist, Vlogger, Teacher


Hello, I'm Peter. I am an artist and teacher. In the past I studied the art of the old masters extensively. From this experience and my own experience as an artist I make my classes. 


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1. 01 Introduction: Hello and welcome in this class. I'm going to paint in water. Carl, A squirrel. I hope you enjoy this. Have a good time. And my name's speed the young guns and I will show you some of my work. 2. 02 Materials: the sort of painting and drawing materials that I'm using on HB graphite pencil for the lines on the paper that is a rush for a lot of color with the water containers. I find this very convenience. So you can just, uh, squeeze here and then water comes out of this rush. So that's very handy. And this is not what kind of set of these are the colors? Mainly that I'm using a blue, yellow ochre or gray burnt sienna, some for 1,000,000 some green. So I will put the names off the color said I'm using in this sets on screen and I will also name in particular wants enough used in this in this world color. This is a paper that I have been using. I still have to finish what they call here. This is a lock. It is blue 476 So I can take this off here, use a little apartments, not foods. So I have to take a knife and cut this news. This is very handy. Whale off using long calls. So these are the materials using wanting. I'm using watercolor paper woods. Quite some structure. Uh, you can also choose to have water color paint with less of less of destructiveness. Personal choice. When you are tracing on image, you don't see it very well on paper with much structure, so that's something to think about. So if you want to trace the image and you want to have a clear tracing, its handy to have a smoother surfaced on this paper. So but I like this paper. It's is beautiful bank. Print it. It's kind of work a swell. 3. 03 Watercolor techniques: I do not approach water. Car techniques Very complicated. I have just one brush and often times I start with something off a wash. So suppose I mix a cholera, so I take some brown and green, often 1000. I make a bit of a muted color first. Oh, are like color in this case, off this girl. What's some sort of general wash? And this is quite have you with water? What way and later on I can put. For example, accentuation is on top of this, and because this is wet, it's still wets. You see that the color that putting on top off this is dissolving in the water that's already on the paper. So when this has drives, let's see, Maybe this is Dr Obits, but it has dried a bit more. Then, uh, the brush strokes stay more or less the same. One thing that you have to be careful about. And it's also something that you can use is that when you have quite a lot of water in your mixture, use quite a lot of water that you can, um, that dissolved the pigment on the paint again in the water. So we have this shape here. And suppose I'm adding, What color hair eternally. And here it dissolves again and into the water. So sometimes it's not what you want, but sometimes it's very handy been something that's a bit too dark. For example, you can as some more water there and go with the brush over its and it dissolves again. So those are few simple things to know. And so these are the main, uh, things to know a wash, adding accentuation on a dryer surface, adding color when it's still wets and making a previously painting layer that again to work on it again. It's very simple, but it's not to work with. 4. 04 Tracing the line art: to get the drawing on the paper. You can print out the line art, which is included in the media in this glass and what I'm going to do, going to make this other site dark with graphite. I'm looking more or less when the scrolls is so you can look through the paper if there's light coming from that side. And let's just do this. I'm using a regular H defense, her mouth. You can also use softer pencil. I wouldn't go harder with two H H two pencils, so but be to or to be pencil is also put over four B. But this is just in HB regular Mansilla people work as well. I see. I think I have most off screw now here on the back side with reference. Now I'm going to attached this, um, the watercolor paper so I can trace its just to, and I'm going to take a ballpoint and I can trace thes lines. Now I'm going to take a ball points and I can these lines, especially when there's start off structure in the watercolor paper, you have to press quite hard, and there's a vague outline now on paper. I'm going to use pencil to make us a clearer 5. 05 Working with graphite pencil: I have traced the drawing from the line paper on the watercolor paper. And if you take watercolor paper with less of a structure in its, then you get a clear off drawing, so I would advice you to do. That's, um actually, that's I used this. There's a vague dropping now, and I'm going to use pencil now, too. Make it clear, Were try to make it beautiful line drawing here on the paper. So I'm going step by step through all the different paths off this beautiful little creature scroll. So I try to get a beautiful line in the here, some a little bit off a texture or could you say, sort of hatching here to, uh, suggested for but most of what I'm doing in this what the color painting will be with watercolor, so I'm not. I'm not going to do it too much with pencil not going to make it darker or anything, but I just want clear outlines so I can use watercolor easier. - It's a little boss close, and you can decide for yourself. If you have some good dropping skills, you could use this this type of paper and if you need a little more. Let's say the, um, it traced image. I would recommend smoother papers. So you see the traced in which clearer after you have traced it. That's personal choice. - The grass. You don't really see its feet. It's got grass, all rounds so and I wanted to do this. 6. 06 The brown fur: first, I'm going to add a brown wash for the fur off this squirrel. Let's see this brown a little bit off orange yellow okra here a little bit more here, having some water here and let's just begin and are starting. Very lights come toe at Doc's later looking out to the lighter areas. Especially now. Buffy I on their D I Let's have this darker color, and I just look at the source photograph and in a Broadway I'm adding color now. Later travel as more texture. More details? No. Now take the yellow ochre again and I just wash everything now. So I'm going to treat this whole animal where that offer is with this mixture with yellow car and now I have to ants this color again. Oops, this one. And now I'm going to at darker areas in the brownish for, and I'm already using some texture and you see using sort of stippling here. It's like hatching, but with what color pants I just go on. I'm doing the whole figure now, adding some water, and when it's small diluted with water, you can have most subtle additions off color, but you have to watch out, because if you use too much water, um, the already existing paint on the paper will mixed with what you're actually adding. So have to be careful a little bit about that's and here I can effectively do that. I This is a little bit too dark, so I can add some water here and moved to Spain. Soft paper, where it's more neat, needed more so. And I added a little bit too much water going to mix a little bit of a can, and this needs to mix it the grass later. It has to be some sort of transition, so I do this this way. So it's not a straight match here. Try to have some sort off smooth transition here, from the grass to defer. Let's see. - And now I want to see if I can adjust some things. This is for every dog here, so I'm going to that loutish will make it where to get hits water, and this could be a bit darker here, adding some doctor brown. This is almost directly from the from the pigments without mixing with a lot of colors, and slowly the scroll is getting shape getting form. And if things have become too dark just at some water there so you can make it lighter again. And here I have to wait before it gets dry again. So I can We're con. That's because if I adds caller now there it just dissolves in the rest of the off the area on this. Be a bit darker here. It's still too west work on. So what I'm going to do, I'm going to wait until that is dry and broken off later arm and I'm going to Rocca bits on the white for 7. 07 The white fur: for the white for my needs, a little bit of yellow Oakar, a little bit of gray, great stone, and I diluted with water because it has to be white and I'm using the white of the paper very much. But I wanted to have some color. Let's say that it's off white, so I just You have this carefully and there are some areas that are a bit darker with shadow. So I take some gray yellow Ochoa and I could use it here and here. A swell bits. You see how it mixes with. I think that is still wet on the paper and another going to do too much in this because I think it's nice already. Now, maybe later minutes tried, but this is very dark. So a bit of my fingers here. Now I'm going to do the I 8. 08 The eye: many of bluish banked, bluish grayish paint ants. I want every dark while the color paint. So I just took mainly this gray paints, pigments and artists that's black blackish. It is dark grey star, really black, but it appears to be black. Almost some dots here. Maybe you have to wait until, uh, that other bluish gray ISS has drives. But you have to see for yourself if it's too wet, because if it's too wets, it's It just dissolves the colors that the great will dissolve in in the in the think that you've already just add it. So you have to wait a little bit much. This is going well. I think so. 9. 09 Reflecting on how to proceed: So let's see what we got here. We have to squirrel if you don't. The I if done quite a lot off the off the, uh, Brown first right for, but I'm going to work on the grass. 10. 10 The grass: I want to take some green, but not too bright green. So a little bit off these greens, little blue and yellow okra and it's a bit of a muted green butts. Uh, I like the squirrel to be the main focus off this trialling this sketch while the colors. So, um, although on the sauce photograph, everything is very green. I'm just adding some very dilute its green areas ants. You can work on the composition in this states because how you are going to ads thes green areas determines what kind of composition it ISS. To a great extent, this has to go over from the squirrels, tail onto the grass. Also here is a transition transition area, - and let's have some green here as well. And because the paint is properly dried already in the face head of the scroll, I can ads this, uh, very close to the border or even a bit over the porter. But, um, thing doesn't dissolve in the new paint because it has already drives, so so it stays intact. But you always have to watch out to nuts ruined something that you have already painted in watercolor tablets at some or green. And when you mix another green stop groups, I'm too enthusiastic. It's never really the same green, so and that some water. And now I want to add some more GREss e texture. Is that a works? Grassy texture use of dark spots. That's shadow as well. If this little animal a little bit off progress here, just a suggestion. So we have this cloud like image almost on the paper, which actually like it's a bit dreamy this way. I try to avoid too strong shapes off the watercolor on the papers. So I have some vertical lines for the grass here hands I can even a little bit of green to the white for because it reflects actually the grass. And it gives a bit of more unity, too. The watercolor as a whole. 11. 11 The finishing touches: What am I going to do now? The last things The last duchess. So I want to add a little bit more definition here in the for And I could just carefully ads these hatch ings in the water. Quality paints so off texture off the for to. But I don't want too much of these shop shapes actually here because it has to remain a water colors. So I'm going to a little bit off Walter and go to take care that thes shapes are not strongly delineated. So actually working true them again now. And I'm at the point that I think, Well, I don't want to do it too much about this anymore because I actually like it as it is and which, uh, making art. It's always difficult to know when to stop. And, uh, I'm almost at that point that I take well, you better stuff. Sometimes they even use my fingers, and that's a little bit of dark green. I'm just using that brown here in this mixture and because there's a shadow here and it's a bit too dark now, so that's workers a little bits. Sometimes she must not be afraid to back a bit of a mess, but, uh well, let's see. It's finished now. I keep it, uh, this. I think it's a nice little sketch. I hope you're having fun making this one, too. Yeah. 12. 12 Challenge: I hope you enjoy this class in which we have painted a watercolor painting off a squirrel. I'm looking forward to see your versions off this one, so please post them here. I'm looking forward to them.