Introduction to Negative Painting in Watercolor | Ashley Prejoles | Skillshare

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Introduction to Negative Painting in Watercolor

teacher avatar Ashley Prejoles, Artist

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

8 Lessons (56m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Supplies

    • 3. What is Negative Painting?

    • 4. Getting Started on Your Bookmark

    • 5. Painting Your Bookmark

    • 6. Getting Started on the Flat Wash Butterfly

    • 7. Painting Your Flat Wash Butterfly

    • 8. Painting the Graded Butterfly

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About This Class

Join me in this beginner-level introduction to Negative Painting in watercolor! You will learn exactly what Negative Painting is, and learn how to paint three separate projects using different styles of the technique, with lots of tips and ideas along the way. I know you will be inspired to create many fantastic things with what you learn in my class. 

Come paint with me!


Meet Your Teacher

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Ashley Prejoles



Hi! I'm Ashley Prejoles, a full-time painter and instructor. My art is about a making tangible connection with the planet and each other: to feel the magic of the things and places around us, bringing wonder, calm or thrill to our spirits.

Nothing brings me more joy than sharing my art and techniques with other people! Watercolor has wiggled its way into my heart as my favorite medium because of it's fuzzy, splashy effects and I am thrilled to share with you what I've learned along the way. 

You'll find my art at and on Instagram at If you share a piece made with one of my classes, be sure to tag me and use #paintwithashley, so I can follow your journey as well.

Let's paint to... See full profile

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1. Introduction: Hi. My name is Ashley for wholeness, and I'm a watercolor artist, an instructor. Welcome to introduction to Negative Painting. Negative painting is an exciting way to create illustrations and watercolor, and it's also an essential skill for artists wanting to paint more intricate, realistic pieces as well. In today's class, we will explore three different ways to create pieces with this unique approach, and it's perfect for beginners looking for a simple explanation to negative painting. This is the first class in a two part series, so I hope you will check out the next classes Well, which has a more advanced look at this fantastic technique, So create with me today as we dive into negative painting. 2. Supplies: Welcome to the class. This is introduction to negative painting. I can't wait to get started before we jump into our projects. Let's take a quick look at what supplies you'll need for today. The first thing you're gonna want is a couple of jars of water. I always have to on my work desk Titles times one is for clean water and one is for dirty water. So use the dirty water to rinse my brush and then the clean water to grab Whenever I need Teoh, add some Clearwater to my paper the's second that you're gonna need a some good quality watercolor paper. I use 100% cotton cold pressed watercolor paper. What we're gonna be seeing in today's class is far. Briana Artistic. Oh, it's ah, bright white cotton paper. It's gonna be on a five by seven inch block. Use whatever you want for this class. I also, um, for most of my projects. Use arches Paper. That's my favorite paper. Eso I highly recommend that as well. If you're not working on a water color block, you're gonna want to tape down your project with some masking tape on two. Some kind of backing board would anything you have laying around so that your paper doesn't warp as you put water on it. So let's talk about brushes. I'm gonna be using Princeton Neptune brushes today. I'm gonna have two sizes of the round. I'm gonna have a size six. That will be for almost everything I do. But I'm gonna have a size two next to me as well. That way, if I need to get so fine detail work, I can, right next to your pains, Have a couple of towels handy. Whether you prefer fabric or paper really is up to you. Just make sure they're close by so that you can easily blood your paintbrush dry when our project calls for that. Let's talk about paints for a second. I recommend you use what you already have available for today's project. My first project is going to be done in a turquoise, the second in a blue, and then the third final project using a combination of pink and blue. The final slide in this section will tell you exactly what brands I'm using. So we'll get to that in a second. I do recommend that you test out your watercolors. Before you begin the project, you're gonna want colors that are fairly transparent. And don't worry if you don't know what I mean by that, we're gonna talk about that at the very beginning of Project One. So use what you have at home and, um, feel free to substitute. You were favorite colors for each project we're gonna be doing today to mix your colors and add water, you're gonna want a palette of some sort. Or you could use a ceramic plate or butcher tray or even kind of a metal 10 service will do the trick. Just something that you could easily separate your paints and add water and create good mixes of your paint colors. All right. And finally, here is Theseus, Marie of everything we're gonna be using on the left. You'll see everything I just showed you. And on the right is the specific brands that I'm gonna be using today. Like I said, I'm using Fabbri Otto Artistic 0 100% cotton paper. The three colors of paint I'm using today are all Daniel Smith. I'm gonna be using fellow turquoise, quit Ecuadoran rose and then fell Oh, blue and it's red shade. Daniel Smith also has a paler blue green shade. But for today, I'm gonna be using the red and then my Princeton Neptune round brushes, sizes two and six. And like everything else, if you already have brushes at home and you don't have a six, but you haven't aid, that's probably gonna be just fine. And don't feel like you have to buy supplies for today's project. Okay, that sums up our supplies, materials, grab everything you need and let's start painting. 3. What is Negative Painting?: What negative painting? Well, negative painting is a technique that we used to describe painting the negative space in a picture. And what, um, I mean by negative space is I'm talking about the space surrounding the subject. So, for example, if I have a picture of a ball, let's just pretend that this top box is a picture of a ball. My ball in the center is my subject and the white space around It is the negative space in today's project. We aren't really gonna focus on the ball itself as, um, the object of our painting efforts. We're going to focus on the negative space surrounding the ball so the ball will still be are subject. But we're going Teoh attract attention to it by painting around it, and thats in an, um, nut show what negative painting is. The reason why it's important in watercolor is because in water color we paint light to dark, and we don't typically add our light values back into our painting. We have light values. Inner peace, by not painting somewhere, are light. Values are the white of the paper, so if I want a white ball, I just don't paint that part of the paper on DSO. What we end up doing a lot of times in watercolor is, um, adding our darker values and preserving the lighter parts of our paper. So we do negative painting all the time. But it's also really fun to focus on just the technique of negative painting to get some really fun kind of illustrative, um, pieces, and that's what we're going to do today. 4. Getting Started on Your Bookmark: Welcome to part one of intruder negative painting. We're getting ready to start our first project. It's the super cute mermaids scale. Um, bookmark. And I'm gonna call this method the stacked method of negative painting. And you'll just have to forgive me for coming up with names because I needed to differentiate each part. Um, but I'm realising that we don't really have names for the different kinds of negative painting techniques. It's all negative painting, but I need to be able to break it down a little bit more. So I am just gonna go ahead and name these different methods. But I'm gonna call this the stacked method because we're going to, um, stack each layer and gradually build this darker value scale as we go. So I think you're gonna like this project because it's very easy. And it's a great introduction. Um, way to play around with negative painting. I wanted to give you a couple of tips before we begin on a couple of different things, like color selection, stuff like that, so that you are set up for success when you move forward in this project. Um, the first tip I have is to test the value ranges of the colors you plan on using. And what I mean by value is the lightness or the darkness of your color. And, um, this color, this is stay low turquoise. This is a great example of a color that has a large value range. See how light it is down here? And then you can tell the shaded parts of this last layer pretty dark. So this was a good color for this project because I wanted very light lights and very dark darks. The second tip I have is picked transparent watercolors. Now, you might be like, Hey, Ashleigh, we're doing watercolor thought they're all transparent. Yes, to a degree. But some, um, watercolors are much more transparent than others. And the fine art brands will tell you which colors or more transparent. So if you work with, like Windsor Newton, Daniel Smith or you know pretty much any fine art brand, they're going to tell you the properties of all the paints. If you're not sure it's OK, don't worry. You can always test your colors. Um, this was a prima palette that I bought this'll year, and I, um, did a quick transparency test when I got it, and all you got to do is take a blank sheet of paper and then draw out a black line. Once you're black, line is dry paint over it with a swatch of your color. And after your swatch dries, assuming you're using a black, that's not gonna bleed with with the addition of water. Once you're black dries. If your colors transparent, it'll still look like a solid black line. If your color is semi opaque or not very transparent, you're gonna be able to see a little bit that of that color on top of the black. So, um, test your colors out beforehand. I find that transparent colors are much more satisfying toe work with much easier to work with in negative painting. So it's my second tip. Um, and my third tip is it's kind of obvious, and this will go for any watercolor project is if you're gonna use more than one color, test the mixes before you begin your project. For example, if you're going to use a yellow and a red in the same project, I hope you're OK with orange because you're gonna get lots of orange. So anyway, um, that's how you can begin picking your paints. And once you pick your pains, we will begin our project. 5. Painting Your Bookmark: Are you ready to start our first piece? We're gonna begin with the mermaid scale. Negative painting. Um, grab your color and think about what shape you want to use. I just used a very simple, um, half circle to create this repeat pattern. Andi, we're gonna work from light to dark. So let me show you the first couple of layers. And then after that, all you have to do is repeat. So the first thing you're going to do is decide what shape you're gonna use, and you can either draw it by hand. Excuse me, Or you can create a template. I created a very simple, um ah, scale template. And I made it wider than my final bookmark was gonna be so that I could stagger the design by moving it back and forth, which with each layer. So if you want to draw by hand, you can skip the template. And if you're gonna use a template, I'll show you how I'm gonna use it before I paint. Um, I'm not going to use the white. I'm gonna actually dio Ah, very, very light turquoise. So let me check my mix. And I think that's pretty good. I might add just a little bit more water because I want, um, to have a lot of different scales. So I need a lot of different values, which means I need to start very, very light for this first layer. You can also lighten up your first layer by just adding some water. And I'm just going to kind of come in and start putting some paint down all over the paper . Like I said, um, I just put some water on my brush so I can just spread that pigment around. Don't worry about creating a flat wash. Just get the paint on there. And I like Teoh when I'm doing mine. Kind of create a modeled, mottled look. I don't worry about it being a nice, even smooth layer sometimes, especially if I'm painting something organic. I even add drops of color in to create specifically uneven surface. But for this project that's not necessary. Gonna rinse my brush and I'm gonna let my first layer dry and then we'll do layer to Okay, First layer is done and completely dry. It's not a bad match. It doesn't. I'm not trying to match this exactly But I did want my first layer to be pretty light, and that did a pretty good job of doing that. Um And so from here on out, I'm gonna be doing just negative painting. And the way we're going to do that is grab your stencil and grab a pencil. Now, when it comes to your lines like your Leinart drawing in your design, you have three choices. You can either wing it. You can freestyle it without drawing anything at all. Your second choice is you can draw her layer and your third choices. You can draw your entire design out ahead of time and then just paint in your layers one at a time. I personally don't like to do that third option where my whole designers drawn out ahead of time because every time I add pain to gets more and more difficult to see each layer my personal. But I also don't really like toe wing it, But some people prefer to do that. My personal preference is to lay down my first wash and then to go ahead and start with my lines, and the way I'm going to do that is kind of line it up where it looks like a good beginning point and go ahead and draw in trace. In my my first layer is pencils actually a little darker than I intended, but it'll be all right. Um, so now here's where the negative painting comes in. Remember when we talked about our painting of the ball? So we have just drawn our ball. So now, instead of painting, these shapes were gonna paint the negative space behind it. And I'm going to demonstrate that right now, um, I like to do this upside down because I feel like if my pain's gonna drip, I'd rather it drip away from my shape. But that's a personal preference. Also, like Teoh prop my paper. Just a teeny, tiny bit. Um, And before I begin, I just wanted to show you that, um oops. Wrongly, the mix I'm gonna use for the next few layers is right here, and it's a fairly light mix. Um, what I'm aiming for with each layer is a pretty identical mix. I don't wanna have to get. I'm not trying to make each mix darker than the other. I'm trying to make each mix pretty identical so I made a good amount, and I'm testing it out before before I go on. And that looks just about right to get my next value. I don't want it to be too close to this. I don't want it to be to water. Or else you won't see a difference between layer one and later to, um So I'm gonna grab my my paint, and I'm just gonna kind of move into those the lines. That's actually pretty dark. So I'm gonna grab a little bit of water, grab a little bit of my water. All right, Now I'm going to pull this paint all the way down, because remember, I'm painting in this negative space. I'm gonna use a little I'm gonna probably mix it back and forth between my water and my mix . Just because I'm what I'm looking at right now, um, looks a little dark, so gonna It's about 50% mix and 50% water. That's what I did as well on here. You kind of have to just play it by ear, though sometimes you'll need the full concentrated version. And sometimes you'll want kind of a watered down version. Um, but remember our values when we're talking about going from light to dark. A lot of it's just about, um, just getting it dark enough to be the next step in that value skill. Okay, here's the before it dries. I'm gonna do one other teeny tiny thing I'm gonna grab a slightly darker mixture that I've already made. Can you see how that's a little bit darker than this? And I'm just gonna put a little bit of a shadow right in between these sections. And this is, um, the negative painting is one example of of a project where you definitely want, um, paper that's going to stay dry our wet a little bit longer. I can feel, um, moving a little bit slower because I'm talking and I could feel my paper drawing. So for my next layer, I'll work about the pace that I would normally try to work. All right? And I'm gonna let this dry completely, and I'm gonna do the exact same thing for layer two. Okay, so now this background layer has dried and I'm ready to do the next one. I'm gonna grab my pencil and repeat what I did. The only thing I'm going to do differently is stagger where my little mermaid skills are gonna go. So where is this one Cut off halfway. I'm gonna go ahead and put a full one on the left and I'm gonna flip it upside down and do the exact same thing just like before. So grab your mixture. Feel free to be generous with your with your water, especially if you've got it. Your water in your pain, especially if you've got it tilted angle like this because you've got to fill in this whole space. Okay? And then with my little brush, I'm gonna dio my little bit of shading. It's OK from layer to layer. If you get some variety on that shadow because already makes it interesting, I am gonna feel free to remove it on any layers Where it, um it was a little bit too much. All right, Now I am just going to repeat until I get all the way. - So how did your bookmarks turnout? I cannot wait to see what you guys did. These are the two that you've, um, seeing. This is the sample. And then this is the one that we painted together. I love both of them. They're different from each other. But that's just how watercolor always is. Um and I couldn't wait to take it off the pad and see what it would look like. So I went ahead and took it off and cut it. Normally, I would go ahead and do a second bookmark or another project, but it's really anxious Teoh to cut it up on day. Look at the results. I have this extra piece of paper now, And if you did the same thing I did, you can make another bookmark or use it. Teoh Swatch out your, um your paints or whatever you want to dio. But I can't wait to see what yours looked like. Please share your projects with me. And whenever you're ready, let's move on to project to 6. Getting Started on the Flat Wash Butterfly: Are you ready for part two? In part two, We're going to do what I'm going to call the flat wash negative painting technique and the reason I'm calling it that is because with the buildup of each layer, we're going to still continue to dio a flat wash over the layer. We're not. We're still going to paint around the objects and the negative painting fashion, but we're going to do it in a flat manner versus doing it, um, in what we're gonna be doing in part three, which is kind of a grated, um, manner. So this is gonna be a really fun project. And what I need you to do is pick your shape, take the shape of your silhouette, and then I want you to pick your shape of what's gonna go inside. They don't have to match. You can do around silhouette with leaves inside. For example, I chose the butterfly because I just thought it was kind of fun in different and, um, I did create stencils for my butterflies because it's a symmetrical shape and I really didn't want to have to deal with creating even cemetery every time I drew one um, for a project where I'm just doing leaves or whatever. I don't think you need to dio stencils. So, um, grab your paper and create a stencil, and then decide what you want, the shapes to be inside, and I will show you how to do this technique. 7. Painting Your Flat Wash Butterfly: Okay, So I'm going to begin my project by grabbing my largest butterfly stencil. This is gonna be the outline of my entire project. And I'm just going to gently trace this butterfly onto my watercolor paper. You can see my little pile of butterfly stencils above my paper, and, um, those are ready to go for when I am ready to do my second layer. But like I said before, you don't need to do stencils. Um, I just like to do the months on shapes that need perfect cemetery for whatever reason. But, um, for just a random shape where you're just gonna be drawing it in, you don't need to have stencils. So I have chosen a fellow blue for this project because it can get those darker values. But, um, you don't need to do a monochromatic piece by monochromatic and me one color. You don't have Teoh do that for this project. If you have chosen a color like a pink or orange or yellow and you know you're not gonna get those darker values, then um don't worry about it. Just add a little bit of a neutral tent, or if Payne's gray would look nice with your color. You can add a little bit of a pains Cray, and that will get you those darker values when you start getting into those darker layers. So I want the lightest layer of my project to be this nice blue. It's not the lightest value, like what I did on my turquoise book markets. Ah, a little bit darker than that, Um, And for each layer of this project, I'm going to do slightly darker layers than what I did on the bookmark project because I don't want to do 12 layers. And, um, I'm aiming for about five on the butterfly, so each layer is going to be a little bit darker in succession than what we did on the last project. So, as you can see, um, the lighter you go on each layer, the more layers you can dio the darker you go on each layer of your negative painting, the fewer amount of layers that you'll be able to dio. So, um, think about that when you are not just beginning your project, but when you're adding each subsequent layer. If you go in really heavy with that color, then you're probably only going to be able to do, you know, 3 to 5 layers if you do a very, very light layer each time than you could probably do a dozen or more like we did with our bookmark. But like I said, I want this project to be, um, fewer layers in the last. So I'm gonna come in with, ah, a slightly darker first layer in this blue, and I'm going to do the same thing on the layers after it. So fill in your first layer if you want to start with a color. If you don't want to start with a color and you want your legislator to be white, then obviously you would skip this step and go straight into tracing your shapes. The first layer of paint has tried, and now I'm ready to begin starting my composition. So this is going to be a slightly different process than what we completed with their bookmark with the bookmark. We just took that, um, scale stencil and then just started at the bottom of worked our way up to the top. We didn't really have to think about placement or any of those things for this project. Um, Then the reason that this is the next kind of evolution of negative painting is I want you to start thinking in terms of composition when you were putting your shapes onto your paper . So how do we do that? So, basically, um, the first layer of, um, drawing that you're going to do, which is what What I'm doing right now is going to be the lightest and most obvious part of your composition when your viewer looks at your completed piece, this is what their eyes gonna be drawn to first. So what? I want you todo is Think about that when you were putting these first shapes in and it might take a little bit of trial and error and you know, you can even go in gently any race, something that you do with your pencil if you need to. Um, and I am going to stagger my butterflies with, ah, large blades of grass. I thought that might make it kind of interesting and break up some of the the butterfly wings. So you're going to see blades of grass in, um, my piece in addition to the butterflies. So I'm just trying to think, OK, where do I put things and how do I make it aesthetically pleasing? But at the same time, you want to leave quite a bit of negative space. So place your objects, um, in a way that they don't touch each other because we're not gonna overlap any of these shapes. You want these, Um, these objects, these shapes kind of spaced apart, so they're not touching. But you also want them kind of nicely, evenly spaced so that, um when the viewer looks at your piece, it'll feel balanced if you you know where to put it. All of these first objects on the right side of your piece, for example. Um just know that that's what's gonna be what your viewers I's gonna be drawn to. So I got my first layer of butterflies drawn in, and I'm happy with the way it looks, and I'm ready to begin painting. So, just like with our bookmark, we're gonna paint the negative space around our shapes instead of painting inside the butterflies. So outline. It's easiest to kind of outline the shape with your paintbrush and then go back in and fill in all the little spaces and nooks and crannies in between. And your goal is to do this in the flautist, um, wash possible. Obviously, we're using, you know, complex shapes. So it's it's not gonna be perfect, but you're aiming for a nice flat, even wash across the surface of your negative space, so paint all around in between these shapes work quickly. Even with a nice, good cotton paper, you're still going to get some hard lines. Uh, you know, if you're introducing wet paint, too partially dried pain. So just try to work as quickly as possible. But not in a way that you feel stress, just, you know, do your best because we are working in lots of different layers. You know, any you know, these kind of imperfections that happened layer to layer. A lot of them get covered up. So trying to distress too much. Um, And after you complete this first layer, we're going to repeat the steps until we have our darkest layers. All right, layer to is dry. I'm going to start drawing out my design for layer three. I'm going, Teoh, take my, uh, little stencils, and I'm gonna fill in that negative space with new, um, butterflies and blades of grass. And for this layer, you're gonna have to start overlapping the, um, new butterflies with the, um butterflies that you just completed on the last layer. And that's okay. That'll give it depth. Just avoid having overlapping shapes on the eggs, same layer. So I'm gonna still try to keep these butterflies spaced apart and not touching each other, um, on the same layer, but they can definitely overlap and go behind butterflies from the previous layers. The main thing you want to dio is never draw or paint over shapes that you've already created. You'll notice that as I'm drawing in my new blades of grass and my new butterflies, I'm still going behind the butterflies from my former layer. And you're gonna do the exact same thing as you start to add paint. Okay, some ready to begin painting this layer and what I'm going to dio is paint the negative space around all the new shapes. I just urine in addition to painting around all the shapes that were in my last layer. So what this will mean is every time you add a new layer to your project, You're gonna be painting around all of those drawings of butterflies and the further along you get into your painting. This will mean that you're doing, um, less broad strokes and a lot more detailed work because it's going to get It's going to get cluttered on there, so just keep a detail brush nearby, something a little bit smaller. That way, if you start to get stuck into some of these nooks and crannies, you have a little guy that you can just reach in and start using for some of those smaller shapes. And then just continue to fill in all that negative space until you filled in your entire soul. It okay, so layer threes dry and I'm ready to begin drawing my fourth layer. I think I'm going to make the fourth layer my final layer. I was originally thinking that I might do five, but as I'm kind of looking at the painting, um, as I progress through all these different layers, I'm thinking the next layer will be a good dark layer, and I think I'm gonna leave it at that, So I'm gonna draw in a few more shapes, and then I'm going to go ahead and paint my final, darkest layer. And I might be adding a little bit more paint to my mixture just to kind of push that, um, color into its darkest values. And then I should be done. - And here's the final Butterfly. I think it turned out really nice. And, um, I love this exercise because it's the perfect project to set you up for final peace. Today. I know you're gonna like Project three, and, um, I felt like it would be a lot easier to do the next project if we did this flat wash butterfly as an exercise. So pick between one and three colors that you want to use for your next project, and we will get started on our final piece. 8. Painting the Graded Butterfly: Welcome to Part Three. If I were a betting woman, I would say this is the chapter that you probably took this cuts for. This is the probably the most common method of negative painting. It's gorgeous. I love it when I see other people doing it. And I love probably doing this style more than the others because it really just creates a beautiful stained glass kind of style. I'm gonna call this method the grated or the Grady int technique. Um, and I'm going to do a quick little demo to show you in real time what it is I will be doing on each of these layers because I'm going to do the speed paints for all the different layers, just like I did in the previous lessons. Um, so let me show you really quickly how I created the wash that we're gonna create around each shape. So, um, unlike the 1st 2 projects where we painted the entirety of the negative space every time we did that layer in this project were on Lee going to paint the area nearest the shape. So, for example, if we have a circle, um, I'm gonna draw this really dark because I don't know if you can see that. Okay. So normally you wouldn't draw that super dark. I really need you to see this. So this is my shape and what I'm going to dio let me do it on the arches. First thing is the arches paper. Here's my circle again. Don't use these dark pencil lines. Um, and what I'm gonna dio is grab my color and I'm going to paint. Still gonna pain around my shape. Except I am going to blend out that color with water and create ingredient. So I'm rinsing my brush grabbing water, and then I'm just going to pull that edge, creating a nice dipping my brush into water again and pulling away from that shape, creating a really nice one of a kind graded wash. No, If you're going for something a little bit more bold, you can come back in with your, um, little brush, and you could add more color. You definitely have that Praga tive. Um, I'm not really gonna be doing this unless I really hit a trouble area. Um so for the most part, I won't be doing that, but it's always an option. If you need to do that, come blow on it. Even that out. Okay, so, um, you will note this is effortless on the arches paper, it's just perfect. I'm not using arched paper for this glass. I'm using the artistic. Oh, so there's a little bit more of a nuance on a paper that doesn't stay wet. Quite is long. So if you can use arches or something that really stays wet and gets that really lovely diffusion, go with that, Um, for this project I was looking for, you know, that really specific size. So I used the artistic Oh, and it's I'm not gonna lie. Had to fight it a little bit more than the arches would would do. So let me show you how to create this same effect on paper that might fight you a little bit more and dry a little bit faster. So we're going to start the same way for this. I'm gonna need a towel. Okay, so we're gonna start the same way you're gonna create your line drawing, and then you're going to put your, um, paint down. Okay? Really nice. And just like before, I'm gonna grab some water and pull at paint out groundwater. Pull out. Do it again. Okay, now, that's not bad. What I found I had to do a lot with, um with a shape. This small is I had to dry my brush and create a thirsty brush, which is a brush that's thirsty for water, and then come back in and soften these edges by pulling up that water and paint. I'm using it as a mop. Okay, um, because a lot of times, these shitty shapes are very close together. So a lot of times I didn't have three inches. I needed it to stay very close together. Needed that Grady in tow happen quite quickly. And the way you can do that is by removing this paint with the thirsty brush. So that's quite nice. Um, so anyway, uh, if you are working on paper, that's, you know, going to drive quite quickly. Keep some paper towels next to you and just dry it off and use the thirsty brush method, and you should be good to go. You can see the paint traveled quite a bit further, um, than it did with the arches. So each paper's gonna behave differently. Um, just play around with your materials. Your paper's gonna affect your project just as much as your paints will. Um, So, like I said, I'm using highly staining colors for this project s O. That means that lifting color will be a little bit more difficulty than it would be if I was using a color that was not staining at all. So a couple things to think about and this is what I'm doing as you're seeing me paint. It's a combination of adding paint and then adding water and then, in some cases, lifting water with a thirsty brush. You ready to go? Let's pain our final project for simplicity's sake, I decided to use the exact same stencils for this project as I did for the one before it. I thought it would be easier for you to see the differences between this technique and the flat technique if I kept the same format. Um, so for your class project for this entire intruder negative painting, this technique will be your class project. Now, you're welcome to post any and all exercises that you dio. But when I refer to the class project, I'm going to re referring to the grated technique. And like I said, for simplicity sake, I am sticking to the exact same format that I did on the last project. And you are more than welcome to go ahead and mix it up and use a different silhouette or different shapes on the inside. It's really up to you. Just have fun with it. And so, as you can see, I am starting exactly the same way. I've got my large, better fly silhouette traced on here and the difference for Project three. The first difference you might notice is I am going to leave the paper blank, so I wanted is many light values as possible. So instead of going in with that first layer of, um, paint, I'm gonna go ahead and leave my first layer white. And that's the main difference between this step and the other two projects have done. When I finally do begin painting, it's going to go jump right into that grated technique around my butterfly shapes. Okay, I'm ready to start painting. Like I said, I'm gonna leave my first layer white, and I'm gonna go straight into painting the negative space around my first layer of butterflies. I have chosen to do two colors for this particular project. I've decided on Quinn, Ecuadoran Rose, and, um, I'm going to use the fellow blue red shade that I used on my previous project. So between the Queen Rose and the fellow blue, I'm going to get a really pretty purple where these shapes start overlapping. And, um, there's really no rhyme and reason to which butterflies get which color. It's more of a matter of trying to just space it out kind of evenly. So if I start to get kind of heavy in one area on the pink, I'm going to switch to blue and vice versa. You can see him kind of, um, working that greedy int out start by outlining your shape and then immediately jump into adding that water and pulling it to create that greedy int. Now, you might not be able to outline your entire shape. If you've got a more complicated shape like I do, you might have to do it in stages. You might not outline your entire butterfly. You might do 1/4 of the butterfly and then pull, um, that pain out and then repeat and work your way around. And this is what it looks like at the end of the first layer. The reason why it looks so different from the last project is I didn't put in that flat wash of color the beginning, so it didn't kind of trace that butterfly silhouette. And then I didn't connect the, um, negative space between the shapes. I just have the area directly surrounding each shape painted in. And I did my best to kind of fade out that paint, and I'm going to start on layer to the exact same way that I did this layer. There's not gonna be anything different. I'm gonna go ahead and and trace in some of those new silhouettes. I'm going to do both butterflies and blades of grass, and I'm going to try to alternate between the blue and the pink so I don't get clumps of blue in some areas and clumps of pink. I'm gonna try an alternate and hopefully they'll intersect and I'll get some nice purple in some places to I'm going to stick with the same value levels on my paint. So hopefully, um, it'll just be a real nice, subtle darkness. And to like I did on the last project. As you begin to paint, make sure that you were painting around the negative space of the current layer and then also all the proceeding layers. - So here's where I met at the, um, end of layer two, and I'm getting ready to draw in layer three. And it really is just a situation off. Repeating what what I've done. I'm not going to do anything different with each layer. I'm going to do this from start to finish. Um, every layer is gonna be treated exactly the same, so just keep plugging away and keep adding those layers until you're happy with where your composition is that all right? I'm starting my fourth and final layer. Um, really happy with how it's turning out. I could probably keep going and at even were layers if I wanted to. If you want to do ah lot of layers than either make a bigger, um composition or use smaller shapes that way you'll have quite a bit more negative space to play around with. But for the amount of negative space that I have compared to the size of my little shapes. I think four is about the maximum I can squeeze out of this piece. So I think I'm going to stop after that And, um really, really liking how it's looking. And here it is. Here's my, um, butterfly silhouette using the greedy in technique. I really, really like this particular technique, and I'm really happy with how this butterfly turned out on. I absolutely cannot wait to see what you guys end up doing with this project. Be sure to tag me on social media and upload your projects to the class so I can see them and cheer you on. And we can, um I just really encourage each other with all the ideas and creativity and then use the hashtag paint with Ashley on social media as well. That way, I confined your pieces, can't wait to see what you guys come up with. And happy painting