Mastering Hands Part 2: Painting Hands in Watercolor | Arleesha Yetzer | Skillshare

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Mastering Hands Part 2: Painting Hands in Watercolor

teacher avatar Arleesha Yetzer, Watercolor Illustrator & YouTube 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

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Watercolor Materials


    • 3.



    • 4.

      Mixing Skintones


    • 5.

      Preparing for Your Project


    • 6.

      Hand #1: Cold Press and Natural Tones


    • 7.

      Hand #2: Hot Press and Opalescent Tones


    • 8.

      Hand #3: Rough Paper and Molten Glow Tones


    • 9.

      Wrap it Up!


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About This Class

This class will teach students to paint hands in watercolor. We will explore several different painting techniques ranging from realistic color schemes to more abstract experimentation!

Students will learn:

  • Useful watercolor materials
  • How to mix skin tones
  • How to use a lightbox/cheap alternatives
  • How to effectively utilize the natural luminosity of watercolors
  • Painting to create light and shadow

Students will create:

  • Three miniature watercolor illustrations… of hands!

This class is geared toward:

  • Artists with at least a basic understanding of how to draw hands/form (see previous class)

Meet Your Teacher

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Arleesha Yetzer

Watercolor Illustrator & YouTube Artist


Arleesha is a watercolor artist and YouTube creator based in the northeastern United States. Her work primarily features dynamic and whimsical representations of the human figure. Primary professional endeavors include her budding YouTube channel with a current subscriber community of over 100 thousand as well as this growing library of Skillshare classes!

Here, you'll find classes on anatomy, figure drawing, and watercolor techniques - all directed to help you improve your portrayals of the human figure. 

If you'd like to connect with me and see more of my work, you can follow me on Instagram or check out my YouTube channel, where I post videos every week. 

See full profile

Level: Intermediate

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1. Introduction: Hi, my name is Alicia. Welcome to Part 2 in my Mastering Hand Series, Painting in Watercolor. To start off, we're going to talk about watercolor materials. A few things you'll need to get started as well as some of my favorites. Then, we're going to jump right into some other tools you'll need or that you might want to have like a light box or how to ink and different types of watercolor paper. We're going to cover all those bases today. Also, I want to show you guys how I mix up skin tones. We'll start with just three primary colors and I'll show you how you can get a very wide range of colors from just those three. Then, we'll jump into some pre-made tones and how you can use all of these things to create little palettes that you know are going to be harmonious. From there, I want to jump into a few examples of hands. So we'll talk about a few different techniques you can use for general watercolor painting, as well as how I would like to apply those things to painting hands. I'm really excited to share this class with you. Let's get started. 2. Watercolor Materials: First, let's talk about materials. We've got a palette, and here's another palette, one more palette, another palette, some more palettes, more palettes. Maybe we need more paints like this. Paper, we should probably have some paper. Paper, more paper, here's a bit more paper, this is paper, this is paper, this is paper. We definitely need brushes. Okay, pencils. We need to write with pencils, good. This is unnecessary. To get started, my recommendation actually looks a lot more like this. What I've got here is a small pallet that I've put just a few colors in, basic colors to get started. One brush, this is a round brush. And you can do a lot with a size six round brush, you can get a lot done. These are Prismacolor colorize colored pencils. I really like them for sketching. I like them better than a normal graphite pencil because they don't smudge the same way the graphite does. This is a micron pen, I use this a lot for lining. This is just a canson watercolor sketchbook that I really like. The paper is thicker and it's great for water colors. As far as my favorite materials and the things I'm going to be showing you today, I'm going to be using this portable painter palette, which is really great. I've actually only gotten it recently, and it folds up really nicely. This cover, this area, and it's about the size of my phone. It comes empty, but inside I've just put in some Daniel Smith watercolors, which is a more expensive watercolor brand. But if you're just looking to get started, I would also recommend Shinhan watercolors or Winsor & Newton's Cotman line. Those are both great, good-quality water colors for getting started. I'm going to be using a few different brushes here today. My basic round brush, a larger round brush, and this quill brush holds a lot of water and a lot of paint. I may or may not use it for heavier washes or covering larger areas. Watercolor paper comes in three distinct varieties. Hot press, cold press, and rough. That's going to be talking about the texture of the paper. So hot press, for example, is going to be very smooth, and there's not really a lot of texture to the paper at all, it's very soft. Cold press is in-between these two here. This one has a little bit of texture on the paper, and most people use cold press paper. It's generally the favorite and it's my favorite as well. It has just a little bit more texture and gives you a bit more interest and a bit more variety in your color. You can see some of that texture on the white of the paper there. Rough paper is, as the name would imply, the most rough of the three papers. It's going to have the greatest tooth, the most texture and you can see that often causes the color to feather out because it doesn't stay in one place. It falls into those grooves and spreads out a little bit. This one in particular is also the heaviest weight that I have. This is the thickest paper as opposed to this one here where you can see is much thinner and bends a lot more. A thicker paper is actually going to allow you to lay down more washes. It's going to take longer to dry, but the paper is going to be able to hold up to multiple layers of paint. 3. Lightboxes: You're probably thinking that these three hands are very different from each other. But don't worry, we're going to talk about those very soon. Before we get into specific painting techniques, I just want to talk to you a little bit about Light Boxes, which is how I managed to get all three of these same hands exactly the same to paint three different times. So this is my Light Box. It's basically just a panel with LED lights inside of it. So when I hit this power button, it lights up. This one has three brightness settings. As you can see, you can see the reflection of my camera and light in there. What this does is, it allows me to trace a sketch onto watercolor paper. For example, these are the three hands were going to be painting in this class. If I wanted to trace one of those which I will soon, I can just lay my watercolor paper over top of my sketch and my lines are clear and bright and I can see them and I can use them to trace these various hands without compromising my sketch underneath. So, I still have this sketch to use as many times as I'd like, but with a Light Box you're able to trace your shape so that you can paint it as many times as you'd like. You can't of course, sketch directly onto your watercolor paper. The only downside to that is that the paper can't handle as much erasing as like a sketching paper could, and then once you've erased at a time, that paper might not take as well to paint. If you don't have a Light Box though, that's all right. You can always hold your paper up to a window, or you can do what I did, which was I just took an old shelf from a refrigerator and I put it on top of a cardboard box and I put a light underneath, and it was literally a light in a box. Light Box. 4. Mixing Skintones: All right. We are ready to talk about mixing skin tones. To start off, I want to talk about just using primary colors to make skin tones, because really everything comes from the primary colors. So technically with red, yellow, and blue, you can basically mix any color which a lot of people don't always believe but if you practice, and you're willing to take the time to learn control over these colors, you really can do anything. So to get started, I just want to show you some examples of skin tones that you can mix with primary colors. The best way to logic this out is to just start one step at a time. So you go okay, skin has some pinkish tones in it and of course there are an incredibly large variety of skin tones. I'm just going to use myself as an example. I go, well I see pink. Well, let's start with red. Red is pink. Well, that's a bit too pink so maybe make it a little bit more peachy. So let's add a little bit of yellow maybe, some yellow, and then well, this is a bit too saturated. So in order to desaturate a color, you can just combine it with its complement. You can see this is now like it be saturated brown color. Let me water as this down a bit and maybe a little bit more yellow and this is really all there is to it. You just have to experiment and try things. So let's see what this color looks like. Here you see we have got this light brownish color, which you can totally use for skin. It's a little bit red, a little bit pink. So for our skin tone pallets, this is the format that we're going to be using for mixing up our palettes here. I'm going to show you how to make these orbs, and then how to fill those with three specific colors to get your overall palette for skin tones. I really love using these circle forms because it gives me just a bit of freedom to manipulate and experiment and try different things. As you can see, most of the test palettes that I made here are not at all natural skin tones. There are few, like peachy or white and things that might represent closer to real skin tone. But one of my favorite things about watercolors is experimenting with tones, and trying things that may not occur naturally in hands, but it's still so much fun to try new things and it's incredible learning experience. Let me show you the actual template we're going to be using and I will have a downloadable PDF for you guys if you wanted to get this template as well. This is a little pallet sheet that I made up for you guys, and that'll be available, I believe in the about section down below, I have a link to the downloadable PDF for this guy if you want it. Then you could just technically use your lightbox to transfer this onto watercolor paper, or like we talked about before, a window or a glass with a light underneath it, how I want to transfer this over. I'm actually working with a block of watercolor paper today, which means that it's all attached, at here together so that the paper doesn't up. I'm not going to be taking this off to lightboxes, I'm just going to freehand some circles to give you an idea. But if you have a loose watercolor paper, then this is definitely a good way to go and it's good to experiment, and to break things down into categories. I'm still going to break it down, but I'm not going to be using this shit today, but I just wanted to show it to you and you can get a link to that down below if you want. We're going to start with our warm tones here. So that's going to be specifically red, orange, yellow tones and then a complimentary thing. What we're going to do, the three basic parts to these skin tones is going to be our base color, our blush color, and our shadow color. If you incorporate those three things into your skin tone, you're going to get something that will be recognizable as skin, even if you make it green or blue or purple or any of those other colors and you're going to get something that reads really well as a skin tone, so we're going to start up here with our warm skin tones. I wanted to bring in a bit closer, and I think for this first one, I'm going to start by wetting the area. Basically, I just want to make this whole circle wet. I haven't even mixed any paint yet. But starting with a wet surface is going to allow us to blend our colors easier, and they're just going to flow into each other a little bit easier, and for this base, that's a good place to start. For our warm tones, we're going to start out standard and just go for red to yellows, peachy colors, and for something a bit closer to a natural skin tone. Let's start with our base color. Here, I've mixed up a bit of my skin tone, with new game Bosch, which is technically my warm yellow, but it's actually a bit redder. I'm just placing that in as a base color to start with. The fun thing about this is you can literally do whatever you want. If I go, maybe this isn't ideal, maybe if this color is too red or too orange, I can always do the next one different, but you never know what I could learn from this one. So I'll do it anyway. Next, I've got some red on my brush here, and I'm just going to drop that in this arc towards the top, and this is going to be my blush tone. It's really is up to you how much you want to think about these colors before you put them in. To be honest, I would recommend just dropping things and just trying something new and seeing how it goes. I want this blush to be a bit more red. I'm just going to mix up some more color, drop it in there. It's fun because you could do something like, I might decide that I want my shadow to be cooler for this one. Instead of using just a darker brown or something like that, I might choose to make my shadow a bit bluer or purple or something like that. Let's see what I can do here. I'm also just using some colors that were already sitting in my palate. It's a mix, so let's see if I just drop. It's very dark. It's fun. Doing your palettes this way is going to give you a good idea of how the colors look together prior to slapping them on an illustration. Now that I've got like this base layer in, you can choose if you want to do multiple layers for these pallets or not. If you know that you're going to be doing multiple layers for your illustration, and you find a palette that you really like, it might be worthwhile to try the layering now to get a better idea of what it can look like later. It's really your choice how much of this is going to be an experiment like how far you want to take the experiment. Because technically even your final illustration could be trying something new and it could be something that you've never done before all the way through and it doesn't have to be perfect before you move on to that final illustration. I'm going to use my heat tool here to dry this a little bit quicker so we don't have to wait as long. That's the magic of a heat tool. It's amazing. Everything dry so fast, and they're very hot. So you see you have to be a bit careful. I wouldn't do this if I had a tape around this area, we have to be careful because sometimes the heating tools can melt your tape. So I think that I want to just warm up this entire skin tone and as you could see with the water colors, they always dry lighter and loosen vibrancy that when you put them on, which is the beauty of layering, because that's really why you layer on watercolors is to just build up slow layers of color and vibrancy over time. It speeds up when you have things like key tool but sometimes, ultimately the goal is always building vibrancy in layer. What I'm doing now is I'm just adding a layer of my warm base color to harmonize everything. As you can see, everything blends together a little bit better now, which it's your choice how much you want things to blend, that's the amazing thing about art. Everything is your choice. Now, I'm just going to wet this area again and I'm going to add a little bit more of our blotched tone to bring that backup. Then I'm going to blend this out. What I'm doing is I'm just going to clean my brush mostly. It's wet, and then I'm going to add some water and just slowly tap or connect the water to my paint, and that's going to create that seamless edge up into our color there. I want to add some more of our shadow as well, which I'm just allowing to mix with other colors. So it gets a bit messy. This is a bit bluer than I think I want, but that's alright because you never know what you're going to get. So we'll just go with it. Sometimes it's also cool to allow yourself to create some texture, so the spreading out of the paint here could be really interesting to see. If for example I want things to maybe get a bit darker around the outer edge, I can take a darker color like my Payne's gray and drop it down at the bottom. Along with several layers and creating transparency and things like that with watercolors, another thing that's a key to great watercolors, is mixing your colors. If I don't want my blush to be a single tone, adding a cooler red to the edges or something like that to create more dimension, is a fantastic thing to learn and a fantastic skill to hone in watercolors. Then if you see large pools of color, it's a good idea to clean those up a little bit because sometimes that can just cause your paper to warp a bit more. I'm going to call that when done for now just as an experiment. I want to do this next one a bit more like an actual skin tone because sometimes you don't want to make blue or purple hands all the time. Sometimes you want to create something that looks a bit more realistic so let's go ahead. I'm going to go with a peachy skin tone to start. Of course, you are welcome to experiment with what ever type of skin tone you would like. This isn't even my skin tone but it's fun to try new things. I have an idea of something that I liked from my previous page that I showed you, so I want to see how well I can recreate something like that. I'm mixing up my blush color now and I'm trying to create a desaturated pinky color that I want to drop into here wet. Let's see how this works. That's nice. I think for this piece that I'd like to keep the saturation level pretty low. One of the ways I'm doing that is I'm mixing both my blush and my shadow color with my base color. Each color contains that base color. That allows for a bit more harmony, and it also keeps that saturation level a little bit lower. I have to admit that I'm not very good at keeping high skin tones natural. These are all of the many palettes that we've created and one of the greatest things about this stuff is, these are tiny pieces of art that literally didn't exist before we created them. I'm so excited to see what you guys come up with because, it's going to be the exact same thing. Somewhere, wherever you are, there are little pieces of art that don't even exist yet and they won't until you create them so please give us a shot again. You can use my PDF or you can just start making circles and start creating little pallets and fun color combinations and new things that you've never tried before. 5. Preparing for Your Project: So I did something a little bit terrifying here and I cut out my circles here. I picked three specifically that I thought would be fun to experiment for, for this class, and I have my different textured papers here and a few different experimental things I want to keep in mind, and these are the three hands we're going to be working with. Just to give you an overview, this is hot press paper and here I was intentionally trying to use watercolors wrong. Going right in with heavily saturated colors that didn't necessarily match in color scheme and just laying on dark colors right away, and it's still interesting, but here you can see a bit more luminescence. I did more layering and slow-paced closer to natural skin tones and I will be showing you guys how to do this with this guy here. We are going to get something close to this, don't worry, I know this one is probably my favorite. This one here, this is my rougher paper, and what I did was I wanted to get this idea of light emanating from the center of the hand and then hard shadows around the back. I think that's really neat as well. These are the three hands that we're going to be working with. Now what I'm going to be doing is going to be assigning these various color palettes to different hands. I have to choose which ones I want to be what colors. Here's what I'm thinking here. We'll do a more, natural skin tone over here, something a bit more pearlescent, maybe even crystalline over here. We might give some facets and try something fun over here. Down here, I would really like for this to be a burning, vibrant, almost fiery, sort of dramatic tense hand. That's what we're going to try here and it's great because you can swap these circles around and try and think, what does this communicate in these different schemes and that's why we made all of these palettes. We have tons of different ways to experiment and I think now that we have picked our tones and picked our experiments and what we want to do, we're ready to start painting. 6. Hand #1: Cold Press and Natural Tones: So the first step in creating our illustration is going to be to trace our hand onto watercolor paper. So I've got some watercolor paper here. This is cold press, and my sketch page is underneath here. I've just taken this on top. By doing this, you can use these sketches as many times as you want. As far as what I like to use to actually trace, I'm using my color erase pencil. I like that a lot better than a graphite pencil specifically for tracing because it's not going to leave the smudges behind. So the back of my paper here is not going to get smudged and also when I'm doing these line work, because this is a bit waxier than a normal graphite pencil. This is not going to smudge on here either, which is great. So let's go ahead and outline this. A bit of advice I would give while you are working on transferring your line work here, is to think about it as just that. Think about it as transferring your line work rather than just tracing. The benefit that's going to have for you is that instead of just putting lines on a paper, you're going to think about actually drawing this, again, like actually creating this illustration a second time, and that's going to give a lot more life and a lot more body to your sketch. Otherwise, it can look very flat. I know that's something that I experienced when I first started using a light box as well. Other lines there are sometimes useful to transfer over might be to lightly sketch the varying planes. So as we've talked about in my last class, you want to think about these as 3D shapes, like the fingers, and the palm, and things like that, so that you can more accurately portray them. That especially comes into play when you think about painting the hand. Because we want to give this in color like some 3D form. I've gone ahead and taped down my illustration to the back of one of my watercolor pads here. I also want to give you a little bit of a view of my mixing wells here. Just so you'll have an idea of how I'm mixing those colors as we go along. I feel like that's really important too. So when creating an illustration, we're using this one a little bit as a guide. I really liked the luminosity of these colors and the vibrancy. It is going to be a little bit different because we are using a different color this time, because we're going for colors like this. So when you see these two next to each other, you can see a lot more. This one has a lot more yellow in it, the red is a bit more vibrant, and then this is a desaturated color as well. That's actually a bluish color in here. So this one's going to be a bit different, but I'm hoping to capture some of the same luminosity and I'm really excited to see how these will differ. One of the greatest things about using that sketch is we can really do these things as many times over as we want. So I'm going to set this off to the side here as a bit of a reference. Everybody's a bit more visible. We've got our reference in place. What I'm going to do is I'm actually going to start with the blush color. The reason I like to do this is I can lay down that value in those areas and the blush is going to focus on the areas of the hand, when you look at your hand, the areas where blood collects in the most area. So for me, I really like to do the fingertips. So the fingertips, the palm, and along the inside of the knuckles here, we'll see a lot of pink in those areas. I'm going to be using a cool red like my Quinacridone red here. I'm going to mix a bit of my skin tone here. I have Naples yellow, which is a bit warmer technically. But you can see already those two together as a nice desaturated blushy pink color, and then you can just find your balance. So if I wanted that to be a tiny bit pinker, that's a really nice rosy color. So we'll start at the tips of the fingers, and that's all right if its a lot of water at first. What I'd like to do is just set it on and do one finger at a time, and then I'm going to blend this out a bit. So I've wiped and cleaned up my brush so that I can pull this color out but get it much lighter coming down. Because I don't want that to be the same pinkness all the way down. As you can see, I'm keeping it very loose. Things are pretty messy, but that's fine with me. You can always use a paper towel to sop up any extra moisture or liquid that you don't want to just sit. I'm liking that already. Now, I'm going to add more pink here. But what I really want to do is move on to a different color. Because I like to establish layers slowly and over time and the benefit to that is going to be we're going to build up our values slowly or gradually, rather, it's doesn't necessarily have to be slow. Next, I'm going to take just my Naples yellow here, which I've started to drop in. Water that down just a little bit. If I think that's too yellow, I can always just mix a little bit of my blush color and that will desaturate that a bit. This is going to go basically everywhere else. Technically, we'll explore this hopefully in another one of our pieces during this class. Technically, you can start with a base coat of your base color and that will give you a bit more cohesion overall. Really, it's up to you because what I'm doing now, by having these colors laid in separately and not necessarily on top of each other, we're going to see that the fleshy areas look a lot warmer. Here you can see I'm just using my brush to rewet some areas where I had gone outside the lines. In a lot of cases, re-wetting will wake that color backup so that you can lift it out. It's not just used for correcting mistakes, you can also use lifting techniques to just lighten particular areas. Well, I use it a lot to fix my mistakes because I paint pretty messy. I want to bring you in a little bit to see this next step. We're going to start adding our shadows. I'm going to be using my neutral tint, which is the name of this color. A good way to encourage color harmony overall is to mix colors that you've already used in your piece. So just now I mix this with our skin color, Naples Yellow, and that's going to allow it to blend a lot better. Now, this is when that 3D form matters. We have to think about where our light is coming from. We also have to think about how the planes of the hand vary to create that 3D form. So let's look at our last one as an example. Here you can see light was coming from back behind the hand or maybe from this bottom side. So the shadows fell a lot in the fronts of these fingers here, but the backs remained light because the light was coming from that side. I want to change it up for this one and imagine that the light is coming from the bottom up towards this way. Which would place our shadows back on the back of the fingers. If you're never sure, you can always just shine a light on your hand and take a look at where those shadows fall. So here, we've got, again, like I said, shadows in the front because our light was coming from the back. But now we're going to do shadows coming from the lower front and then place our shadows in the upper rear sections. This can be a little scary because as you can see, that looks very dark right now. There are two ways to handle that. One, you can use just a wet brush to soften or if you go, okay, this is getting a little crazy, you can use a paper towel to back that off. As you can see, I've taken up a lot of my pink color there, but that's all right because we're going to work in layers. We'll get back in there. You do want to way lighten this to start. So just going to look like dirty water now because our other values are so light. Let's bring back some vibrancy here. I'm going to go back in with my blush color. I'm going to lay that in again, over our fingertips. Sometimes I like to spot down like this, you can see, to create some interesting texture. When we go back in with our skin tone, that Naples Yellow, that's when you're going to start to see a lot of the vibrancy show through and come back into this because it's looking pretty desaturated right now. Which is fun, if that's what you're going for. Like to go a little somewhere in between for this. Now if I let this dry, these spots will dry here, I'm just going to blend it out just a bit. As we add more layers of paint, you're going to notice that we start to lose our line work a little bit, especially when you use a pencil. If I'd gone right in with a micron or an inking pen or something like that, those lines would have stayed a lot better for us. But I like to see those lines disappear and then we can choose to ink over top when we're done, if we want to. You can see a lot of the paint that I'm laying down is very watery. If you're ever concerned that you're laying too much water on a page one of the greatest solutions, and one that I'm probably going to make use of in just a second here, is just use a smaller brush. This brush that I'm currently using is a size 12, which is rather large. I'm going to switch it up now because I feel like I'm adding a ton of water at a time, at a point where I want to be able to control that a little bit better. Instead I'm going to switch up to my size six here. By keeping my paper wet here, it allows the colors to blend together a little bit better. Which is why we get more of the most edges from one color to the next. Like I said, don't worry that it's losing form right now because you can see, I can't really see a lot of the shapes, like the individual shapes because our lines are blending in with our color. But that's all right because if we want to, we can line this at the end, and many people do that. I used my heat tool here, which you can find a link to in the description, to dry my piece before I move forward. It's really, really fantastic and I love it. If you don't have a heat tool though, you can use a blow dryer, or you can also just leave your piece out to dry and just give it some time. Sometimes you can maintain a little bit more of the natural granulation of the page when you just let it dry on its own, but this is pretty good. I'm going to now go in with another layer of my shadows, which we obliterated in bringing back our warmth. But that's good. I think I want to have my shadows be a little bit harsher, so we're going to work on just some hardlines for shadows. Again, I'm going to be pulling in my neutral tint here, which is a little bit bluish. I'm going to bring that in just with a bit of our skin tone, to desaturate that. I'm thinking about the different sections of the hand that would cast a shadow here. Imagining that the palm area here is casting a shadow on this inner part of the hand and things like that. You really do want to think about where these shadows are going to fall. That's one of the greatest things about drawing hands, is you always have your hand to use as a reference. One of my favorite properties of watercolors is how colors blend together. What I want, I don't actually think I want the shadow color to be a flat, neutral. I'm going to add a little bit of Payne's gray while this is still wet to deepen some of these shadows. I'm just dropping that in. Some of these areas have dried already, but that's okay. I'm just adding a little bit more variety to our shadows. I know it's scary when you start dropping in like darker colors, but contrast is one of the most important things in illustration. Contrast is what's going to make it go from being a blur to being something that you can actually read and you can look at and you can tell what it is. Also, watercolors tend to dry lighter than when they are wet. I'm allowing myself to go dark on these colors, but not so dark that you can't see through that pigment, see the light of the page. Now I have to choose if I want to leave these harsh or if I want to soften them up. To soften, I'll show you an example. That's again, just what we've been doing. My clean wet brush here, and if I was to just touch this to some of these harder lines, I can blend that color up. Then that shadow is not as hard. It's always tempting for me to just blend all of my shadows because the harsh lines frighten me a bit and I'm worried that it will ruin my pieces. But it is good and it is dramatic. Actually one thing I don't like is that pulling that shadow color up, I can lose the vibrancy of the hand. I think I'm going to keep these a bit harder and just go with it and just allow it to be the texture that it wants to be. You can always also see I just made this section really wet. Then you can just drop color into wet areas, and that'll give it the very soft look as well. As these colors start to dry, they're lightening up, so I'm just going in and deepening the areas of deepest shadow so that those stay nice and dark. That takes several layers, which is one of my favorite things about watercolors. I love to add layers. One thing that's really important to keep in mind with watercolors is that your paper can only handle so much working. If you start to notice, like in here, I'm starting to notice that my paper's starting to lessen in quality. It's very possible that if I continue working it specifically in that area, my paper could begin to deteriorate. It's something to keep in mind, to know that stopping point for your pieces. I think that we are very close to reaching it in this particular case. Some papers, there are heavier weight, are better. Heavy layers or multiple layers and things like that or heavy lifting and things. But you have to be sensitive and just take the time to get to know your paper to know how much you can work it. I'm really liking how this one is starting to look. One of the best ways you can tell how your piece will read is to just back it up and look at it from further away. To show you an example, I'll back this up. You can see from a little bit further away, I can see our shadows in there, I can see those value a little bit better, and that vibrancy from the blush color really stands out. I'm really happy with this. I think the only thing I'm going to do, and I'll keep it further back so that you guys can get an example. I'm going to add a little bit more of our warm base color here to some of these areas, and water this down a bit. What I'm planning to do is just from the base of the fingers, I want to blend out our warm colors. Just add a bit more warmth to the piece overall. I'm really liking how that's reading from further away. I'm liking being able to see that contrast and being able to read the shadows. In lining our piece there, there are few things we want to keep in mind. You want to think about how harsh you want the lines to be. If I just wanted standard black lines, like what I did in here, which is really nice. You can just use something like a micron or any multiliner, anything like that. I'm actually for this piece, I'm going to be going with a Col Erase because I want something a little bit softer, and this is violet, which is like a nice deep purple color. You can use really any color, if I wanted something brighter, I could use a red. Or I also have, you could use the Sharpie marker, which is like a really vibrant blue. I also really like to use a deep pen and ink on some occasions. This would actually work really well with also like some sepia ink and a deep pen. You do have a lot of options and they're all going to give you a very different look with your piece. For this one, I'm just going to go with my Col Erase in violet. Now you've got some really soft late lines on this piece, and I don't know if you can tell here, but my pencil does not want to lay in this spot. This is that area I was telling you about before that was starting to get a bit overworked by my paper. You can really see the effects that has on things like this when the paper starts to get worn. Any type of media that you want to put in places like that, it's just going to give you trouble. The worst thing that could happen is your paper rips and then your piece has a rip in it, and then you have to decide if that's relevant to you or not. But yes, I'm really happy with the late purple lines on this one. Another really fun way to embellish your illustrations is with metallic paints. I have the fine text site here, which is a beautiful, wonderful set of Goldwater colors and various hues. This one's actually silver at the end too. I just added a ring, and what this does is it creates this weight of the piece and lifts it up and makes things flow this way. Draws the eye in this upward attention and it works really well, I think, with the direction of the hand. I really like how this one has turned out. 7. Hand #2: Hot Press and Opalescent Tones: Next we've got this hand here and I'm going to be using hot press paper as opposed to cold press paper. This paper is very, very smooth, so it doesn't really have very much texture. I'm excited to see how that works with this color palette here, which is our opalescent primary palette. I'm really excited to see how all the colors work out on this particular hand. For inking, I'm going to be using these two pens here. They're microns, they're black. I'm going to be using my 0.05. and my 0.005. This is a medium weight felt tip and this one is very fine. If we take these caps off, and what the caps off, you can see that the names are very different in size. The one on the bottom is much thicker than those tiny one on the top. That's going to give us some interesting line variation. Let's go ahead and ink this up. Now that I've got line work that I'm satisfied with, we're going to go ahead and move into our color. Again, just like last time, I prefer to start with my brush. I'm using a little bit of paint from our last hand. I'm just going to go ahead and place this on areas where there would be lots of blood flow. With this particular technique, this color scheme that we're going to be using, which is this one here. I intentionally want to have a lot of whitespace and then blend it out. When I place my colors, I really want to think a lot about areas that I'm planning to leave white. Again, I'm going to start with my brush areas. Once I've got a couple of those down, I don't want that to dry. What I'm going to do is take a wet brush, clean brush, and just blend those edges out. We will slowly work on adding more color to the hand over all as we blend our colors out. That's just part of the fun of it. I want to try to utilize the natural smoothness of the hard-pressed paper, so I'm going to be trying to blend everything out and keep things relatively smooth I think. We're already getting some really nice depth here and I'm super excited to see how this one turns out. I think I'm going to go in with my yellow next. The idea of the yellow here, you want to think of your yellow as a luminescent glow area. I oftentimes end up doing this around the corners of my blush areas and just high points where light would hit a little bit stronger. Let's think about where our light would go. It can shadow. I'll brush a little bit. If you feel that you've laid too much color down, you can always just use a paper towel to get that up. I'm liking how this is going so far. Next I'm going to go in with a blue shadow color, and I have to make a choice here with my blue, I can stick so this lighter, ultramarine blue or it can go darker or with a payne's gray. I do want to keep this lighter. I'm really liking these colors so far, but it's starting to look a little orange or yellow. I want to add my cool color. I think I'm going to go with ultramarine for this one. With all of these colors, I'm really watering them down a lot. Because I want to start with a very light base coat, which is what I'm working on now. This is our shadow color. Oftentimes shadows and they're being the harshest lines in pieces. Just because cash shadow is a lot harder than what you would blend out for, like a brush or something like that. If you feel that you want to leave them a little bit harder, that's totally fine. Layer number 1 is dry on this hand. We're going to move on to layer number 2. I'm going to go back to my brush and start to layer in the heavier edges. Again, blending those right-up. While this is just still wet, I can add more paint into the end. Then I don't have to work as hard to blend it out because it'll blend itself. That brings me to another technique that you can use. Technically, you can just wet an area with wet water if that's where you're going to be going next. For example, I'm going to begun coming up here. I'll wet this area, take my brush color. Then I can just drop it right into that wet area. It will do a lot of the blending work for me, now this paper, it's actually very warm [inaudible] , so my paper is drying so fast. It does not want to work with me or help me out at all. I'm thinking about doing something a little bit adventurous, which is adding a deep purple to some of my deepest shadows just to intensify the contrast. The worst thing that could happen when you experiment, is that it doesn't work. Then you can try again, but you learn something new. The best case scenario is it turns into something that you really like. Then you've discovered a new technique that you enjoy. I'm never unwilling to "Sacrifice APs" because it's always fun for me to learn something new. I'm taking a lot of that purple out because I think it's actually a little bit too warm for what I wanted. But I might just leave tiny bits of it here and there. Like that hand number 2 is done. Well, I can't say that this hand necessarily turned out exactly how it originally planned. I'm so really happy with the result. I think ultimately I allowed my colors to touch each other too much and to blend together, and that way I didn't really maintain that pearlescent look. But I still really love the way this hand turned out. Similarly to my last hand, where I added that little bit of gold, like a champagne gold, I believe this one here. I can't resist adding a little bit more of a shimmer to this one. I think I'll probably do that each of the three hands, but we'll do it a little bit different each time. 8. Hand #3: Rough Paper and Molten Glow Tones: We've got the lights turned way down low for this next one because we are moving on to our very thick rough paper. Now technically this is Arches cold press paper. It's not technically rough, but because it's so thick, it's very comparable to rough paper so you're going to be able to see some of the same effects, which is why I'm using this as an example. This is the one that I had done on rough paper before. We're going to also be going for this glowing effects again because I really liked how this worked before. What I'm going to be doing to achieve that is I'm going to be leaving the central area of a glow. Wherever that glow is coming from is going to be the lightest area, and then I'm going to work on slowly building out reflective areas and deep harsh shadows. I'm really excited because we're going to be doing this with our different palette here. Excuse the poor lighting. I just wanted to show you our palette that we're going to be working with here. We're going to be working with these really rich orange red brown tones. We're going to be trying to create a molten glowing effect here. Let's turn our light box back on. I'm actually going to be tracing this with masking fluid instead of a colored pencil or a pen because what that's going to do is it's going to leave me to allow our lines to be the white of the paper. The masking fluid it's going to go on, it's going to dry, and then we're going to paint over it, and when everything is all dry, we'll be able to peel that masking fluid off to show the white underneath. Masking fluid basically just protects the paper from getting any paint on it. I'm really excited to see how this turns out. Should you choose to use masking fluid as well for any of your align work well, I wouldn't recommend. It's required that you allow the masking fluid to dry completely before you even think about painting on this. You can tell that it's dry when it becomes more translucent ultimately. Now, my masking fluid is green, but there's also blue and orange ones. But overall you can touch it and it won't come off on your fingers anymore, it'll be dry. It also gets a little bit rubbery. That's how you know that it's dry and it's very important. This will not work if it's not completely dry before you start painting. For our color, I want to start with a base of our bright glowy color, which for me is going to be this new gamboge. I will try to make sure that I include the names of all of the colors in the description or I'll make some notes on Skillshare. I'm going to start with new gamboge. What I want to do actually is I want to make my paper wet first. I'm just going to clean off my brush a little bit. I am working with dirty water here, but that's okay. I'm going to make this wet. Look at that, there's a lot of color. One of my favorite things about this particular paper, this very thick paper, is that it allows you to do pretty much as many layers as you want. The paper is so thick, it handles a lot of washes very well. Another thing that I like about the masking fluid is because it is a slightly raised surface. You can use it to help keep you inside the lines. Of course, I've already broken that rule, but that's okay. We're starting with our bright glowy color and we have to decide where the glow is coming from. For me, I want it to be coming right from the center of the hand. I think we can try to get some really interesting effects here. I'm going to drop in around that central glow. Now remembering that we want the actual glowing areas to be a little bit closer to white, and the best way, I think, to leave some areas light if that's what you want to do. I'm going to drop in my darker color in some areas. Then I'm going to take a paper towel and dab out the areas I want to be the lightest. I want this to stay light down here and here. Because we're working wetter here I also choose to start with a larger brush this time. I do want to keep a bit of darkness. Where's our palette? This is the palette that we're going for, it's good to keep this handy. I think the best way to start seeing some contrast is to just move on to our next color. In this instance, this is going to be our blush color. You can see with our paper being wet, this paper stays wet much longer. That just wants to feather and spread right away, which I think is beautiful. I want to allow the color to do that as much as I can without losing the effect that we're going for. Now that our last little piece is all dry it is time to remove our masking fluid which is my favorite part of doing pieces like this. Again, I have waited for this to dry completely because if your paper is still wet at all when you rub off your masking fluid, it will rip your paper and you'll be sad. I know that from experience. What I'm going to do is I'm just going to start to push and rub at our masking fluid. You can see it's going to start to peel off. Silly me, I almost forgot about the obligatory metallic paint accents. 9. Wrap it Up! : Somehow just like that, another class is done. Thank you guys so much for joining rebuffs for this class. It was a fantastic learning experience and I couldn't be happier with how these hands have turned out. Even more than that, I am so excited to see the projects that you make. So please make your little orb colors swatches. You can use my PDF if you like. Please share those with me and I want to see your hands. I want to see all of it. Anything you create, I want to see it. Thank you so much again for joining me for this class, and I'll see you in the next one, guys. Have fun.