Paint Vibrant Tropical Plants & Flowers with Watercolor | Petals by Priya Watercolor | Skillshare
Drawer
Search

Playback Speed


  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

Paint Vibrant Tropical Plants & Flowers with Watercolor

teacher avatar Petals by Priya Watercolor, Watercolor Artist & Teacher

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

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.

      Welcome to Class!

      2:41

    • 2.

      Class Projects

      0:58

    • 3.

      Supplies

      1:30

    • 4.

      Hibiscus Basics

      1:50

    • 5.

      Hibiscus Petals Demo

      4:50

    • 6.

      Hibiscus Petals Practice

      8:33

    • 7.

      Hibiscus Stamen

      3:48

    • 8.

      Banana Leaf Basics

      1:01

    • 9.

      Banana Leaf Stem

      5:54

    • 10.

      Banana Leaf Practice

      7:32

    • 11.

      Texture & Troubleshooting

      4:41

    • 12.

      Bird of Paradise Basics

      1:08

    • 13.

      Bird of Paradise Stem

      4:34

    • 14.

      Bird of Paradise Orange Petals

      6:50

    • 15.

      Bird of Paradise Blue Petals

      3:16

    • 16.

      Plumeria Basics

      1:10

    • 17.

      Plumeria Petals Demo

      2:37

    • 18.

      Plumeria Petals Practice

      4:37

    • 19.

      Plumeria Buds

      5:41

    • 20.

      Ginger Basics

      1:12

    • 21.

      Ginger Petals Demo

      2:50

    • 22.

      Ginger Petals Practice

      5:33

    • 23.

      Ginger Stem

      4:44

    • 24.

      Final Thoughts & Resources

      1:56

  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.

338

Students

12

Projects

About This Class

Let’s dive into the vibrant world of tropical plants and flowers using beautiful, expressive watercolor techniques!


My name is Priya from Petals by Priya Watercolor Designs and I’m based in Honolulu, Hawaii. I’ve always been inspired and amazed by the true beauty of all the plants and flowers I’m surrounded by here on the island. The deep, rich greens… the vibrant shades of pinks, oranges, and yellows… and the sheer size of some of these plants provide endless inspiration for my artwork.

Inside this class, we’ll learn how to paint an array of tropical botanicals, including: 

  • Hibiscus 
  • Banana Leaves
  • Bird of Paradise 
  • Plumeria
  • Hawaiian Ginger

We’ll utilize blending to create soft gradients on the plumeria petals, we’ll practice our layering skills for adding texture on the hibiscus, we’ll master the wet-on-wet technique to capture the natural, glossy sheen of the banana leaves, and we’ll fine tune our water and brush control along the way. 

You’ll leave with a new set of skills, techniques, and experiences to utilize in all your future creations as an artist so you can move forward with creative confidence.

While some of the techniques I’ll show you are more geared toward intermediate artists, the class overall is suitable for watercolor enthusiasts of any level. I’ve broken down each project into bite-sized lessons with real-time instruction so you can follow along at your own pace.

When you’re ready, grab your supplies and let’s get started!

About the Teacher

Hello and welcome! My name is Priya and I’m the owner of Petals by Priya Watercolor Designs. I’m an artist and art teacher based in Honolulu, Hawaii. I’m passionate about teaching art in an approachable manner and helping artists at any level feel excited and empowered to create beautiful artwork that embraces their own unique style.

One of my absolute favorite parts about being an artist is connecting with other creatives and sharing our love for art, creativity, and entrepreneurship. Let’s connect!

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Petals by Priya Watercolor

Watercolor Artist & Teacher

Top Teacher

My name is Priya Hazari and I'm a watercolor artist and owner of Petals by Priya Watercolor Designs. I specialize in painting loose watercolor florals and botanicals and am deeply inspired by the vibrant colors and beautiful nature surrounding me in Honolulu, Hawaii!

My journey with watercolors started as a hobby in 2018 and is now my full-time career. Over the years, I've had the pleasure of teaching in-depth painting and creative business classes to 5,000 students online and in person. I've also been able to see my designs come to life on products through licensing projects, and have transformed my artwork into prints and stationery items that are sold in retail stores around the United States. It's been a dream come true!

Though there are many aspects to my crea... See full profile

Level: All Levels

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
    Exceeded!
  • 0%
  • Yes
  • 0%
  • Somewhat
  • 0%
  • Not really
  • 0%

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.

Transcripts

1. Welcome to Class!: Welcome watercolor artists as we dive into the vibrant world of tropical plants and flowers using beautiful, expressive watercolor techniques. Today I'll be your guide on this journey where we'll explore the lush beauty of Hawaii right from the comfort of your own home. My name is Pria, from petals by Pria Watercolor designs. And I'm a professional artist specializing in floral and botanical watercolor artwork. I'm based in beautiful Honolulu, Hawaii. And I have always been inspired and amazed by the true beauty of all the plants and flowers I'm surrounded by here on the island. The deep rich greens, the vibrant shades of pink, oranges and yellows and the sheer size of some of these plants provide endless inspiration for my artwork. In fact, I recently released a collection of tropical watercolor pieces that brought me so much joy to paint. And I wanted to create this class to share that joy with you. Inside this class, we'll learn how to paint an array of tropical botanicals, including the Hibiscus flower, banana leaves, Bird of Paradise, Plumeria, and the Hawaiian ginger flower. And as we paint them, I'll share my step by step process and techniques for bringing reference photos to life on paper. We'll utilize blending to create those soft gradients on the plumeria petals. Practice our layering skills for adding texture on the hybiscus. We'll master the wet on wet technique to capture the natural glossy sheen of the banana leaves. And we'll fine tune our water and brush control along the way. Now these techniques will, of course, be valuable to each of the projects we complete inside this class. But more importantly, the experience and confidence that you'll gain throughout the process will be invaluable to your watercolor journey. Outside the class, you'll leave with a new set of skills, techniques, and experiences to utilize in all of your future creations as an artist, so you can move forward with creative confidence. While some of the techniques I'll be showing throughout class are more geared toward intermediate artists, the class overall is suitable for watercolor enthusiasts of any level. I've broken down each of the projects into bite sized lessons with real time instruction, so you can follow along at your own pace before we get started. If you'd like to learn more or connect with me on social media, you can find me on Instagram at Petals by Pria, on my website, petals by Pria.com or on Youtube at Petals by Pria Watercolor. When you're ready, grab your brightest paint colors and let's get started. 2. Class Projects: As mentioned in the introductory video, this class will include five projects in total. These will include the Hibiscus flower, banana leaf, Bird of Paradise, plumeria, and the red Hawaiian ginger flower. You can choose to learn them all or pick a couple of your favorites to focus on. First, each of the projects will be painted with a mix of loose style with some more realistic details added to each of them. I included a PDF that you can download below with sketches of each of the projects, so you can follow along easier. But if you prefer to paint without sketching first, you can also totally do that and just paint in more of a loose style. I want you to be able to express your creative freedom and make your own artistic choices in this class. But that PDF also includes a few stunning reference photos of each of the plants and flowers we'll be painting, so you can get a better idea of their shapes, their colors, and their overall general look. And in the next video, we'll cover all the supplies you'll need for this class. 3. Supplies: Let's review the supplies we'll be using in this class. For your convenience, I also included a downloadable PDF with links to everything that I'll be using. First up is watercolor paper. I'll be using arches, 100% cotton cold press paper. But no matter what brand you like to use, I do recommend using 100% cotton professional grade paper. Because for these projects we'll be using some lifting and blending techniques that will perform a lot better on high quality paper. Next up is the brushes. I'll be using a variety of round brushes from the Princeton velvet touch series. I like to use these brushes because they have the perfect amount of stiffness versus flexibility. And they have a fine tip point at the end. That is exactly what we need for the style of painting will do in this class. But of course, any round brushes you like to work with, it should be perfectly fine for watercolor paint. I'll be using a variety of colors that I'll share at the start of each individual project. But as I always say, you're more than welcome to use whatever colors you have available to you and that you like to work with. I want you to focus more so on the processes and techniques of this class. And not so much on finding the perfect, exact color. Especially because a lot of these flowers that will be painting come in a variety of colors and color combinations. In real life, I'll also be using a pencil for some light sketching, a bowl or jar of clean water, paper towel, and a mixing palette. Don't forget to download the supply list down below if you need help finding any of these supplies. And once you're ready, we'll get started with the hi viscus flour. Up next. 4. Hibiscus Basics: Start out with the beautiful Hibiscus flower. If you've been to Hawaii or other tropical places, you have probably seen these before. They are simply beautiful. They come in so many different colors and color combinations and they are just one of the quintessential tropical flowers. Let's take a look at these reference images again. These are all included in the downloadable PDF. You can see that all four reference photos are very different. This is just a small sample of the varieties that Hibiscus come in. You have the bright yellow, soft pinks, bold reds, but they all still have the same core characteristics. The ruffled edges of the overlapping petals, the delicate ripples in the center of the petals, the deep dark value of color in the very center, and the long stamen coming out of the middle. Those are the first things that I notice. But feel free to write down or just take a mental note of any other details that you find in the Hibiscus flower. I said this before, but I'm not planning to paint hyper realistic versions of any of these. But I do like to take a moment to just notice some of those elements that I want to include in my paintings using my own style. Now, the light pink flower on the very right is one that I took on a neighborhood walk a while back. And those are the colors that I'll be painting in my upcoming lesson. For the base layer of the petals, I'll use a light value of this pink for my pastel dreams palette. And I'll use that same color in a darker value for the ripples and shadows in the petal. For the stamen, I'm using an even darker pinkish red that I absolutely love. But as I mentioned, the Hibiscus flowers come in all different colors and color combinations. You're more than welcome to choose a different reference image, or choose different colors, because the overall process will be the same no matter which colors you use. 5. Hibiscus Petals Demo: All right, so let's go ahead and get started with the beautiful Hibiscus flower. This is just a sample painting that I did. Of course, yours doesn't have to turn out exactly like this. As I mentioned, there are so many different colors that Hibiscus comes in. If you want to go the pink route, you can follow along with the colors that I'm using. Or if you want to do yellow or red, there are just endless combinations. Feel free to make it your own. For this one specifically, we're going to have a very playful, loose style. I want to be able to capture those ripples in the petals like we saw in the reference photos, I'm going to be using some wet on wet technique and blending and layering. But overall, it'll be a pretty loose style. Now I have my sketch already down on my paper. As a reminder, all the sketches are available for download if you'd like. I'm going to start with this petal right here, just because it's pretty straightforward and it'll be a good one to show you our process. I'm going to start with just a super, super light first layer. You can see there's a little hint of pink just from excess paint on my brush, But for the most part, it is just a very light value, almost clear layer. You really want this first layer to be nice, and even you don't want to have too much water to where you see petals forming. But you want enough, you'll start to see blooming happening. Once you add the additional layers, now I'll go in with a slightly darker value of pink. I'm going to start here just by adding in some layers. I want the outer edges of the petals, and I want this center to be darker where it meets the rest of the petals. I have my darker value of pink, and I'm just starting to tap it in down at the bottom again. Because it's wet, you'll see that paint start to bleed out into the rest of the petal. So I'm going to add it there. I'm also going to add some of this darker paint around the edges again, just take your time. Have fun. Don't be afraid of what you can't control too. Because loose style, especially when you're using wet on wet, there's a lot you can't control. But that's the look we're going for. Just have fun and let it do its own thing. Now, after adding that darker value up top, I've rinsed off the additional pigment from my brush, and I'm using clean bristles to soften out those lines a little bit and just make it a little more smooth. Now later on I'm going to be using a very dark, reddish pink for the stamen of the flower, but I'm also going to use that color here to add one final deep dark layer at the very center, because that's where we want the darkest value to be, where it meets up with the rest of the petals. And I'll just add a little bit more here. Make sure you use the tip of your brush to capture those rough edges of the petal. Now I'm going to start using a light hand and the tip of my brush to create some lines just like this. That's what's going to give that ripple textured effect to the petal. Using a fairly light value, using the tip of my brush, and just adding in a little bit of texture just like that. Even that line is a little bit harsh for me. When that happens, I just rinse off my brush and use the clean bristles to smooth it out a little bit more. That's the process we'll be doing throughout the entire flower. I'll remind you, I don't want you to do the exact same strokes that I'm doing. If you want to add more ruffles, you can. If you want to have fewer ruffles and just have clean petals, you can do that as well. Feel free to express your creative freedom now. I'll just continue that until I'm happy with how the petal looks, Adding some more texture and ripples, adding darker value on the edges, smoothing things out. And really just taking advantage of the petal while it's still wet so that I can get those really beautiful bleeds. Another thing you can do if you want your petals to stay nice and light like you can see in my example here, I have a lot of light areas, which I think is really beautiful. And add some really nice contrast. What you can do is take a clean, damp brush and lift up some of that color. This technique is called lifting. It's a really great way to add a little bit of contrast to the petal, add some highlights, just really make those lighter areas pop. All right, I'm happy with how this first one turned out and now we can move on to our second petal. 6. Hibiscus Petals Practice: For this one, I'm going to move on down to the petal at the bottom again, I'll start with a very light value, it's almost clear, but it has a little tint of pink. I'll apply a very thin even base layer, making sure I don't have any puddles or pools of water forming. It's just nice and even this is a great project to start with because it's a good blend of loose and playful, using expressive strokes, wet on wet, but also adding a little bit of detail. It is a great one to ease into our tropical flowers. I have my base layer down and now I'll take a medium value of that same pink and start to tap in where I want those darker values to be. Of course, down at the center where it meets the other petals. All of them, no matter which one will have that really deep dark value in the center. That is one of the key characteristics of the Hibiscus flower is the dark center. Then you can choose where else you want those darker values to be around the petal. I'll tap them in around the edge. This is also a great time to practice your water control. You can see a gentle bleed happening, but if I have too much water on my brush, it's going to flood the petal and just explode out. But if you don't have enough, you'll not get any bleeding at all. Just make sure you have a decent amount on here so you get gentle bleeds and just try to find that happy medium. Then as you go, you can rinse off your brush and smooth out any lines with a clean, damp brush. There's a lot of back and forth between adding in more color and then blending it out. Just finding what style you'd like. I use a lot of bleeds and blending in my paintings. Every time I add in more color, I always rinse off my brush and then smooth it out a bit. But I'll say it one more time. You are more than welcome to make your own creative decisions here. Figure out what your own petals need. If you want to do more blending or less blending, you're more than welcome to do that. Now I'll go in again with a dark value of that reddish pink color. This will be the same color as the stamen here in the center of the flower. That's the last step that I'll do, but for now I'm using that same color, very center of each petal. Again, just taking advantage of the petal while it's still wet, making sure I get all the bleeds that I'd like adding some of those Ripley edges. Now I'll use my medium value again to start adding in some of the texture lines, using the tip of my brush and pulling it outwards. Again, this is a harsh line compared to the softer ones here. I'll go in and smooth that out. But first I'll just add a couple more of these ripples. I'll also do one coming in towards the center as well. Now I can rinse off pigment again and just start to soften out those lines again. I'm going for the loose style. I don't want to spend too much time blending, but I do like the look of having those softer ripples. Then the final step will be rinsing off my brush, dabbing it on the paper towel, and using the lifting technique to make those highlights even lighter. Because I really like having a nice sharp contrast between the darker pink and the lighter areas. I think I actually want one more little ripple here. I'll just use the very tip of my brush and add in a small little one here. All right, that is looking pretty good. I'm actually just going to go in one more time with that dark red and just tap in a little bit more. You don't have to do this part, but I just like that very stark contrast, just making that a little bit more bold and dramatic. Now, these other two surrounding petals, it'll be the same process as we just did. I'll speed that part up. But before we do that, let's go ahead and paint this one together. Now, this petal, if you're following along with my sketch, is the one that has the stamen on top of it. But I'm not going to worry about using masking fluid or working around it. Because as you can see in the example painting, the stamen is a lot darker than the rest of the petal. We can paint the petal completely. Wait until it dries, and then just go ahead and paint that stamen directly on top. Let's start out with our very light value and start to fill in our very first layer of this petal, just giving it a little bit of a wiggly edge. Now again, I'll start by tapping in the darker value. Base. Now you can really start to see where all these inner petals connect. That's where the darkest value will be. That's what creates a little bit of depth here, because it looks like it's going deep down into the center of the flower and then getting lighter as the petals extend outward, adding in the center, and then tapping in some of the darker areas around the top to create those very soft ripples. That's what I really love about these flowers is they are so expressive and beautiful and they fold in their own way. Truly, every petal looks so different. Just using a clean, damp brush here to soften some of those edges. Now I'll use that dark red pink to darken the center even more. This is the same color that we'll be painting the stamen in at the very end, You want to make sure this petal is completely dry before you add that in, Otherwise it will just bleed out and look a little fuzzy. But we want the stamen to look nice, and crisp, and sharp. I'm just randomly picking places to add darker values around the petal other than the center. The center will always be the darkest, but for the rest of the petal, I'm just placing it in wherever I want. Again, this is loose style. I'm not trying to make it hyper realistic. Now, I'll just add a couple of those fold lines. This is a very small petal, so I don't need to worry about adding too many of these, but just going to use the tip of my brush to add a little bit of texture. As the final step, I will just lift some of that lighter color up. We're looking pretty good. The rest, as I mentioned, will be the same exact process. I'm going to just speed up this part, but again, it will be the same exact thing that we've been doing. Starting with the light layer, tapping in the darker values in the center. To create that we tap in some darker values along the side. We add our texture line starting thin and then getting a bit thicker as they reach the outer edge of the petal, just like you can see here. Then you can lift some of that color out. Same exact process and go ahead and fill in your last two petals. And then we will meet back up at the end to paint the stamen together. All right, so I have finished all of the petals using the same technique for all of them. And now I want to let them dry completely before we do the last step, which is adding in the. So just give yourself a couple minutes to dry. 7. Hibiscus Stamen: All right, our petals are nice and dry, so we can go ahead and add the final step, which is the stamen. As you can see in the example flower, it starts a little whiter at the base, at the center of the flower. And then it gets thinner and thinner, and then it has these little dots on either side that will connect with very fine lines. Now I'm switching over to a size five brush. I used a size eight for the petals, but I want a little more control for this one. I'll be using that same dark red color that I used for the center here. I'm going to start by painting the very base, which is the whitest part. This is called wet on dry painting because the layers underneath are already dry. There's no bleeding happening. If you do see bleeding, stop and let your petals dry completely. And then you can go back in and add the stamen. But for now, I'm just using the tip of my brush and blocking in that color. It's getting thinner and thinner as I move to the top. And using the very tip of my brush at the end, it's nice and sharp. Now I'm going to darken it just a little bit more, going over it with more of that pigment. And that's because water color always dries a little bit lighter than when you apply the paint. So I just want to make sure I have enough pigment on there so it maintains that nice deep color at the very base. I'm adding even just a little bit of black to my mixture to deepen it even more, just adding a touch of that color at the very bottom and then blending it out. Now we can start to add the little dots at the end, which is called the stigmas. And I'm just going to add a variety of sizes of these dots. Some of them will be small just using the tip of my brush. Then I'll apply more pressure to get some of the bigger dots down towards the bottom. Don't overthink it here, we're just adding wherever you'd like. Try not to overlap too many of them, but just add a fair amount at the tip of the stamen. Now I'll go ahead and let these dry and then we'll do the final step of adding all the connecting lines. Now that all of the stigmas are moving down to a size one brush that has a very fine tip. If you don't have a size one brush, that's totally fine. You can just use the tip of another round brush. I'll just start connecting that stamen to all of the dots. I'm just using a very light hand painting in these little dainty lines. All right, there we have it. The beautiful hibiscus flower. I hope you enjoyed painting this one. As I mentioned earlier, it's a great one to just experiment, use playful wet on wet technique every time I paint one of these. Even if I'm using the exact same sketch, it looks different because you never know how the different bleeds and blooms are going to work. That's honestly the best part of watercolor, unexpected nature. That's why I always say the best thing you can do is just let it do its thing and try not to control it too much. I hope you enjoyed this and we'll move on to the next one. 8. Banana Leaf Basics: Now let's move on to the banana leaf. Banana leaves, in my opinion, are one of the most beautiful and unique tropical plants out there. They might seem simple, but there's just so much to them that makes them fun and interesting to look at and paint. Let's look at a couple of these reference photos. The things that jump out to me the most are the texture, those lines going across each side of the leaf, the little torn edges that you can see on the leaf to the right, and the shadows and highlights that enhance the overall look of the leaves. And if you search for other reference photos of banana leaves, you'll quickly find that they all look very different. Some have tons of little tears on the sides. Some have more of a flat top, while others are rounded. They're just all so unique. The colors I'll be using in my painting demonstration include sap green, deep sap, green, and indigo. So go ahead and sketch out your banana leaf, whether you use the sketch that I provided or you make up your own, and then we'll start painting the stem in the next video. 9. Banana Leaf Stem: We can get started painting our banana leaf. This is another really fun project. We're going to start by painting the stem, and then we'll get started on the leaves and we'll go section by section. This is just the sample I painted. As you can see, we'll be utilizing shadows and highlights to capture the gloss on each of the leaves to capture that dimension and texture. Let's get started by painting the stem. Now I'm going to be using a size two brush for this project because we're working with pretty small sections. If you don't have a brush that small, that's fine. You can just use the tip of another round brush. Or you can also do a larger sketch minus on a five by seven sheet, but you can really blow it up to whatever size you'd like. As I mentioned, we're going to be starting with the stem. I'd like to start with the stem first because it's a little bit lighter than the rest of the sections. We'll be adding darker shadows on either side of the petal sections. But I'd like to start with the stem, because then as we add the leaves, we can paint over it and just clean up any of the edges. The stem is like the base underneath layer and then the leaves are at the top layer. I'm starting with a fairly light value of my green blue mixture. I'll just start by placing down this base layer, all the way down the stem. Starting from the top, which is thinner, and then going all the way down to the bottom. I'm starting really light because we'll be building darker and darker layers on top of it. As I said, it doesn't have to be perfectly clean because we'll likely be painting on top of it once we start adding the individual sections of the leaf. Don't worry too much about having perfectly clean edges. Now, I'll start by tapping in some color at the base while it's still wet. You can see in the example here, we have some shadows and depth by adding in these layers. I'm going to start there. While it's still nice and wet, I am grabbing a darker value of my green mixture. I'm going to start placing this along the edge and along the bottom, starting pretty thin and dainty at the top and then getting thicker at the bottom of the stem. And as I go, I'm going to be using a clean brush to soften it out and just blend out that color a little bit, because I want that gradient to be nice and smooth. In most of these projects, you'll see it's a lot of back and forth between blending things out, adding more color. Blending it out, again, it's just a nice back and forth. That also really helps you to get a feel for your own painting style as well. You can take a look at your painting every now and then, determine what it needs, what it doesn't need. See if you want to make it more detailed and do more blending and layering, or if you want to keep things a little more loose. Every time I add more color, I go back in with my clean bristles To smooth it out a bit, you get a nice soft gradient from dark to light. I'm going to now continue working my way up the stem using a medium value of green. I want to outline either side of it, see how you can see that the lightest part is where the stem is coming out towards you, and then the darker parts are where it rounds downward. We want to create that effect by tapping in darker shadows on either side. I'm just going to work section by section, adding a little bit of that darker color on either side of the stem, sing off my brush. And then smoothing it out again. Darker colors on either side and then the lightest value in the middle. I also said this earlier, but just don't worry too much about this part because likely you'll be painting on top of it once you start adding the leaves. Anyways, I just like to block in this color and add a little bit of dimension. Establish that on the base layer. But majority is going to come from the leaf sections. Anyways, don't spend too much time on this part, but I'll just continue working all the way up, working in little sections at a time so that those lines can remain wet. If I were to paint in the lines all the way up and then start blending, by the time I got to the top, it would probably be dry already. And it's harder to blend paint that's already dried. I'm just working section by section all the way up the stem. You can already start to see some of that dimension forming here. And it looks a little more realistic because you have the highlights. And then you have the shadows as the curve of the stem starts going downward. Just go ahead and keep doing this process all the way up the stem. Now the majority of this is done, but I'm just going in to add a slightly darker value on the very edge, just in the areas where it got a little too washed out. I just want to bring a little bit more of that color back in. I'm happy with how this looks so far. I know it looks a little funky without the leaf sections filled in yet, but I don't want you to worry too much about this step. I just like getting it done first so that we can then paint in the leaves over the top of it. But you can always go back in and make slight changes to the stem as well. Just go ahead and let this dry completely and then we'll get started with the leaf. 10. Banana Leaf Practice: Now we can move on to the leaves. This is the best part of this project. As I mentioned in the beginning of this video, we'll be using a lot of blending. We'll also be doing wet on wet for blending. We'll be adding the darkest parts of each section on the inner and outer edges. And then we'll be blending into the lightest value in the middle. We'll need to rinse our brush a lot. We're going to need to just work with our water control and our brush control to create these nice gentle bleeds. That's what's going to give this banana leaf a lot of great texture. Another thing to note here is that I'm using a variety of colors to help keep the painting more interesting. Some parts I'm using sap green for the warm yellow green. Other parts, I'm adding some indigo to have a cooler green. And I'm just making sure to vary it because it helps to create a more interesting look rather than just having one solid color. I'm going to start with my deep sap green. I just have a good amount of color on my brush. I'll show you the process that we'll be doing on every leaf section. I'm starting by just gently lining the outer edge of this one section, then I'm going to rinse off my brush completely so that I have clean water and clean bristles. And that'll help me to start gently softening that out a bit and blending it towards the lighter value in the middle of the section, just using my clean brush, I'm rinsing it off every few strokes so that I have clean bristles to work with. Then I'm just gradually bringing it to a lighter and lighter value towards the center of the leaf. You could also use two brushes If you want to have one that's mostly clean for blending and the other is full of pigment, it's usually a more efficient way to do it, but I usually like to just use one brush, but it's up to you as we practice in the last lesson. You can also practice your lifting technique like we did on the Hibiscus. If you want to lighten some areas to create stronger highlights, you can just use your clean bristles to lift some of that pigment right off the page like I just showed in all of these projects. You'll get to practice a good variety of techniques, not only for these projects, but also that you can take with you in future projects. But now I'm going to do the same thing to this inner edge. I'm adding my darker green along the edge, blocking in some of that color, not too much. Then immediately rinsing all that off of my brush and starting to feather that out and meeting the other edge, you're bringing each side of the leaf towards a lighter value to meet in the center, that will be the highlight of the leaf. You can see I'm starting to bring these two together. Here you can see this section of the leaf really start to form beautifully. I'm just using my brush in between to soften some of those areas. Now you can decide where you want to tap in some more colors. I want this line to be a little cleaner. I'm just going to line that a bit more. This is what I meant with painting over the top of the center stem as well. You can see I've already added that darkest part, right over the top. That's why I didn't want you to worry too much about making the perfect inner stem because most likely it'll be covered. Anyways, that is going to be the main process for every single section. I'm just adding a couple more strokes here to really fill it out, but that is the overall technique we'll be using. On all these little sections, you can see it's created a really nice highlight here, which is the part of the leaf that's folding outwards towards you. And then the inner shadows. And the outer shadows are the darker parts of the leaf where it's hanging down or folding in towards the middle. You get that really nice effect that they're almost floating in the wind. Let's go ahead and try the same thing on another section. And you'll see that I'm jumping around sections because I want to make sure that I'm not bleeding any sections into each other. I want that top one to dry before I start working on the one right next to it. Now for this one, I'll be using my sap green, which is a lot lighter. Like I said, I like to vary the shade of green that I'm using. Just to keep it interesting, I'm going to start with this top section here and I'll do the same process. I like to start with the outer edge first. You can start with the inner edge if you'd like, but I just drop in a little bit of color on the very edge. Like I said, some parts are thicker, some parts are thinner. But before I give that any time to dry, I'm rinsing off my brush. Or like I said, you could also just use a different clean brush and I'll start to work this color inwards towards a lighter value. You ultimately want a very soft and smooth gradient from dark to light. I'm rinsing off my brush every o stroke so that I make sure I have clean bristles to work with. If your bristles aren't clean, then it's easy to just get muddied up. And then you can't really create a very strong highlight because it's just going to be too saturated with color. Don't be afraid of rinsing off your brush quite often and then continuing to blend. Now I'll do that same exact thing on the inner edge. Once again, I'm lining it up, starting with the darkest color, rinsing off my brush, and using those clean bristles to smooth it out and pull some of that color out into the middle. Again, you want the middle of each section to be the very lightest area, but you want smooth transitions from either end. After I do that, that's when I go back in and just make any finishing touches here. If you want to add any more color or smooth out any lines, you can go ahead and do that. Every section is going to be the same, starting with the outer edge, or you can start with the inner edge if you'd like, rinsing all of that pigment off and blending it out. You'll really get comfortable with this technique by the end of the project because it's a lot of repetition and we'll be doing these same exact steps all the way across the entire leaf. Just have fun with it. Take your time. Give yourself grace and patience and just get lost in the process. Again, adding the darkest color. And then just blend, blend, blending. Go ahead and keep working on this, and I'll show you some troubleshooting tips in the next lesson. 11. Texture & Troubleshooting: Sometimes what I like to do to add a little bit of texture to the leaves as well is create some of these very faint lines. You can do that either after, when it's dried or while it's still wet. One way that I like to do it, this leaf is still wet. I'm just going to add a little bit more pigment there. Then using the tip of my brush, I just pull some of that color right out and follow the curve of the leaf. You can see it's a very subtle little addition, but it does add some of that texture that you see on real life banana leaves. You can do it that way where it's still wet and you're pulling that color out to create a very subtle line. Or you can do it on leaf sections that have already dried. Like this one, it's dry and I'm just using the very tip of my brush to create these little fine lines. That one obviously is not as subtle as this one. It depends on which route you want to go. I personally like the subtle ones a little more, you can see on my example painting here. But if you want more distinct texture lines as well, then you can do it in this method where it's already dry and then you're just applying those lines right on top. This is the wet on dry technique because that first layer is completely dry before you start adding on those lines. You can really go either way, just depending on your preference. Now as you work on this, there are a couple of blending issues that you might run into as well that I wanted to review some of the steps that you can take to make it a little bit easier. First things first, we talked a little bit about this in the last one, but water control will be extremely important as you work your way through this banana leaf. Let me show you what it would look like first if you didn't use enough water and you tried to blend. Let's say I'm adding my outer edge shadows. I try to blend it out, but I don't have enough water on my brush. This is what you end up with. It's looking streaky, and I'm not able to pull out any of that color like you can. When you have the correct amount of water, then it's going to dry with a very harsh line. It's just going to be very hard to make it look smooth. Even if you go back in with more water later, you can see it's hard edges and streaky and it just doesn't look very good. Now in that case, if it has already happened to you, you can always go back in and just add a little bit more paint on top of it and then start to re, blend it out. I'll show you that here. Just adding in a little bit more color while it's still wet, Then making sure I have the appropriate amount of water on my brush to start blending that out towards the center. That's one way you can troubleshoot that. Now, on the other hand, if you're trying to do this, but you're using way too much water and paint, you'll get the opposite effect. Let's say I go in and I'm adding on a big blotch of color. You can already see it start to puddle up there. Then I try to blend it out with a lot of water on my brush, you'll start to see it's just a big pool of pigment. It's going to get really messy. It's going to have very harsh lines once it dries. What I'm doing here to solve that is just rinsing off my brush, drying it off on my paper towel, and letting it soak up all of that excess water and pigment. Those are just two of the common problems that you might run into as you work on this project. It's another great opportunity to practice your water control and your brush control. It's going to be really important in all of the projects in this class, not just the banana leaf. You really want to get comfortable working with your brush, with your water, and all of your supplies. So with all that in mind, you can continue working on your banana leaf, filling it in section by section, working on your layering, your blending, your water control. And just keep working until it's at a point that you're happy with and then we can move on to the next project. 12. Bird of Paradise Basics: Talk about the Oso, beautiful Bird of Paradise plant. There are tons of Bird of Paradise right around the corner from where I live. And they're always a joy to paint. Here are a couple of reference photos. The one on the right is from my own camera roll. And I have probably about 100 more stored in my phone to reference when I paint. The main elements that really stand out to me with the Bird of Paradise flowers are the fiery orange petals sticking out of the top and the vibrant blue ones that almost look like little daggers. Those provide just beautiful pops of color. They add a lot of interest to the flower as a whole. There are also some really gorgeous gradients of color on the main base of the flower as well that we can have some fun with as we paint. The colors I'll use in my painting include sap green, deep sap green, and indigo for the stem. A mixture of values of yellow orange, and a deep orange red for the fiery orange petals. Finally, a really beautiful, vibrant blue for those blue daggers I like to call them, but feel free to use any shade of blue that you have. 13. Bird of Paradise Stem: All right, the first step of the Bird of Paradise is the stem. I'm going to be using a mixture of sap green, deep sap green, and add a little bit of indigo for this darker section. I'll start with my size five brush here, it's a round brush. I'm going to start with the light green section. You can see on our sample painting here, the section is light green with a little bit of a darker shadow. And then we'll go on top with the darkest section that has a little bit of indigo. But I always like to work from light to dark. I'll start with the sap green section. I'll start by just gently lining this very bottom area with a little bit of that darker value of sap green, which has a nice, yellowy, warm undertone. Just using the tip of my brush dropping in some color. Then like we've done in a lot of the other sections, I'm using clean water to smooth out that edge and blend it out a little bit. I want that top section to be the lightest value. That's where it's going to connect with the orange. I want it to be very light value. I want to just create a nice smooth gradient here, making sure to rinse off my brush every few strokes so that I have clean bristles to blend with. Now I'm going to drop in a little bit of a darker value of green here at the very bottom. Just so I can make that contrast a little more dramatic. Again, just using the very tip of my brush, I don't flood the surface. This is another great opportunity to master your water control. As you work with the wet on wet technique. Again, you want just enough water to get a nice gentle bleed, but not too much to where it explodes over the entire section. I want to maintain that nice light area at the top. I'll just go back and forth a little bit here, darkening some spots and then making sure I have a seamless gradient from the very bottom up to the top. Now I'm going to give it a little bit of time to dry before I add in this darker section here, just because I want to have a nice crisp line between these two. At this point, it's nice and dry. I'm going to go in with my deep sap green with a touch of indigo, so it's very dark. I want this section to be a little bit more bold, that's why I'm going in with this dark color. Using the very tip of my brush, I'm just going to drop in this really dark color here. I'm lining the left edge. And then I'll rinse off that pigment and smooth it out a little bit. I had a little too much water on my brush there. Just drying it off and soaking up some of that excess. Continuing to blend it out and cover this entire surface. I have said this in some of the other lessons, but when I do things like this, when I blend out colors and create gradients, that's just because I think it helps to add a little bit of dynamic interest to the painting. I'm not looking at my reference image and finding the exact spots that there's highlights or shadows, or trying to make it look hyper realistic. I just like having smooth gradients and a little bit of contrast. I just think it gives your eyes a little bit more to look at rather than just having one flat color with no dimension. Again, not trying to make this look hyper realistic. I'm just adding a little bit of interest by creating these soft gradients and utilizing different color values. This is another great opportunity to infuse your own style into this painting. If you do want it to be more hyperrealistic, you can really look at those shadows and highlights and place them in the exact correct spots. Or if you want to be more on the loose style, you don't have to blend at all. You can just use the wet on wet technique and drop in color and let that paint just bleed and bloom. You're always welcome to express your creative freedom in these projects. But anyways, the next step will be adding the orange, yellow petals. We'll do that next. 14. Bird of Paradise Orange Petals: Okay, so now we can get started on our yellowy orange petals. And this will be like how we did for this first section. We'll have a blend from light yellow to a dark orange. But I'm actually going to start by just adding the base layer of yellow. It's a warm yellow and it's going to transition from light to dark. And then we'll go in a little bit later to add those really dark orange shadows. And then we'll just gently blend it out a little bit, but we'll start with this base layer for all of them. I'll start by just adding in these base layers. I have a nice warm orange, yellow on my brush, and I'm just going to lay down some color here. I'll still blend it just a little bit from dark to light, but I'm not going to worry too much about creating perfect blends or having strong contrast, because I'll go back in with my darker orange at the end of this. For now, I am just blocking in this color. Just adding in a little bit of a contrast here with some darker yellow and smoothing it out. I'm just lifting some of that pigment up here because I had a little too much color. Again, you can work on that by just rinsing off your brush and letting those bristles soak that up. This is what we want our base layers to look like for every single one of these orange petals. I'll skip a petal here because I want to make sure that one dries before I work on the one right next to it. I'll do the same thing, just having a nice soft yellow background layer. This is another one where you can have fun with the wet on wet technique, Use expressive strokes, let that paint bleed, then we'll do the fine tuning finishing touches once we go back in with that dark orange layer. But for now, again, just laying down that color and having just a very subtle gradient, just work your way across the orange parts of this flower. Make sure you're happy with that base layer. Don't make it too dark because we do want to have our second layer be the darkest. It's always better to start lighter than you think. Then we'll get darker and darker as we add the additional layers. We're also going to have this little orange section down here just starting with the tip of my brush. Also, make sure that all of your green is completely dry before you add this section because you don't want any of your green and orange bleeding together. All right, now I'll go in with my orange. For that bold, dark layer, you want to make sure all of your yellow sections are dry. First, we'll just be adding some of these bold contrast lines. I have my deep orange loaded up onto my brush. I'll use the very tip. Carefully add some of that color down on the bottom. Now, I am going to blend it out a little bit. Not too much, but I want to soften that edge a bit. I rinsed off my brush. It's nice and damp, and I'll just line the very edge of that to soften it out. I'll do the same process to the other petals as well. Taking my dark orange, you can also add a little bit of red if you'd like to make it extra bold. I usually end up doing that after adding this step, but just lining the edge here, making it a bit more bold. Rinsing off all of that pigment so I have clean water to work with. Then just barely softening that out. You don't need to worry about making the perfect blends across the entire petal. I'm just barely softening that out. It's not so harsh. You can already start to see from just the base layer to adding a little touch of orange already looks way more bold, way more interesting, and it adds a lot of depth to our bird of Paradise. I'm going to continue working my way across these orange petals, just gently adding in this bold orange, softening it out. Just like I've said in the other ones. I'm renting off my brush every few strokes so that I have clean water to work with. This is also another tip that I've shared in some of my other classes, but that is to not give up on your painting when it's in the ugly or awkward stages. I consider right now or a few minutes ago to be the ugly stage where everything looks a little bit washed out, the lines aren't very clean. Sometimes I look at my artwork and I just want to toss it in the recycling bin. But when you just stick with it, you work on your blending, you add some more layers, add some wet on wet technique. It really starts to come to life like this. When it's in its early stages like this, it can sometimes feel easy to give up on it, but I just encourage you to stick with it. Worst case, if you stick with it and it still doesn't turn out great, the whole process is still great experience and great practice. Be patient with yourself and stick with it. I'll come back to this one, but this petal is still a little wet. I'll skip to this one for now. Just continuing to work my way across this painting. Adding in my orange, rinsing off my brush, and gently smoothing that out. You get a lot of good repetition and practice. This one is pretty little, you don't have a ton of room to work with here, but you can still just use the very tip of your brush to deepen that top section just a little bit. The final one here, adding in that orange. Now, as I mentioned, sometimes I like to add just a little touch of red to the orange sections to make it even more bold and make that contrast more dramatic. I'm just taking a tiny bit of red added to my orange mixture using the very tip of my brush and just barely adding a little line on the very, very edge. It's not even very noticeable, but it does just help to deepen it a bit more. Once you're done with these final touches, we'll move on to the next lesson, where we'll add the little blue petals, and that'll be the final step to the spirit of Paradise. 15. Bird of Paradise Blue Petals: We are almost there. But the final step for this gorgeous bird of paradise is adding in these little blue petals. They really add a great pop of color. And we'll just be utilizing different values. These are pretty small. You'll either want to use a very small brush or just a tip of your round brush. I like to make the edges a little bit darker, deeper value, and then lighter in the middle. That's what we'll be doing next. I'm using a very vibrant mixture of blue. Feel free to use any blue that you have available to you. And I'm going to start with the edges and apply a very deep value of this blue. Just block in some of that color. You guessed it. While it's still wet, I'm rinsing off that brush and using clean water to pull some of that color out. I'm working my way to a lighter value in the center of this little petal. Then I'm also going to make these little notches on either side. The darker value, just adding a little bit of that up at the top and then pulling it down to meet with that lighter value of blue. Then I'll do the same exact thing for the other side, starting with that very deep, vibrant blue. Using the tip of my brush to carefully add that on the very outer edge. I'll also add that dark color onto the little notches up at the top. I hardly ever paint with blue. This is a really fun pop of color for this project. Then of course, rinsing off that pigment and blending it out. Be sure to take your time, you can add as much or as little detail as you'd like. Just make sure you at least have a little bit of variation in value so it's not just one solid blue color. I personally like it to be darker on the outer edges and those little notches on top. And then I blend lighter towards the center. Every time you see my brush go out of the frame, that's just when I am rinsing off the blue. Because especially for bold colors like this, it's really easy for your brush to get muddied up with such a vibrant color. But then it's really hard to blend, especially here in the middle. I want to have nice clean water to work with so I can maintain that light, bright value. It's looking pretty good. Now, I'll finish it out with this one right here. It'll be the same exact technique. So I'll just speed this part up, but making sure to be mindful of color values having some dark and some light. All right, and there we have it, our beautiful bird of Paradise. I just love that blue pop of color. It is just the perfect, final touch to this painting. 16. Plumeria Basics: We'll move on to plumerias. I wish you could smell these flowers through the screen, because plumerias just have such a beautiful peach floral scent that I just can't get enough of. Here are a few gorgeous reference photos. The one on the very right is from a botanical garden near me that has tons and tons of plumeria trees. As you can see, there are a lot of variations of plumeria. Some are yellow and white, others are a bold, vibrant pink. Some have a more delicate shade of pink. But they all have those gradual gradients on the petals. And I'll show you an easy technique to achieve that once we start painting. I also notice the curves or the folded edges of the petals, and also these little pink buds that will paint together. In my demonstration, I'll be painting the G, pink and yellow variation, but you are always welcome to choose any colors you'd like. The colors I'll be using in my painting include a medium pink from my pastoral dreams palette, the same dark pink red that I used in the Hibiscus painting. And then I'll also be using this nice warm, yellowy orange tone for the tops of the plume area that I'll be blending into the pink. 17. Plumeria Petals Demo: All right, Now we'll get started with the pretty plumeria flower. This is one of my all time favorite ones to paint, because we'll be blending this pink into the yellow. These are just the colors that I've selected. But as we saw in the reference photos, they come in a lot of different color variations. I'm going to start by showing you on this large petal, just so you can see it a little bit better. I'll start by grabbing a pretty dark value of my pink. I'm just going to add a little bit here. Right at the center. And then a little bit up the edge. Then I'll rinse off all that pigment. My brush is nice and clean. I'll start blending this up and pulling that color towards the center. Every few strokes, I'm rinsing off my brush. As you know, if you've done the other lessons, we are doing a lot of blending. And when you're blending, it's crucial that you have a clean brush so that it doesn't get too muddied up. Especially when you're working with lighter colors like pink and yellow. Now, while this is still wet, I'm going to grab my warm yellow. It's almost like an orange, yellow. I'm going to get plenty of that on my brush and start to add it to the very top of this petal. We'll be blending it out, just like we did for the pink. I'm not too worried about where exactly I'm placing it, but I'm going to rinse off my pigment again and do the same thing, softening some of those edges and gradually blending it down into the pink. The key when you're blending two colors together like this, is to make sure that the point that they meet, they both are very light values of either color. I don't want to blend this rich yellow into a dark pink. I'm gradually lightening the pink. And gradually lighting the yellow so that they meet at the very lightest value. And that makes a really beautiful, almost like a cotton candy type of gradient. Just deepening the pink a little bit here and blending it out. It's nice and smooth. I want to avoid any harsh edges like this, if I ever see those, I just use the tip of my brush with clean water to soften it out. All right, our first petal is looking pretty good. I'm just going to add a little bit more of that dark yellow here. Make that contrast a little darker. I'll do the same down on the pink as well, then we'll get started practicing on the rest of the petals. 18. Plumeria Petals Practice: Let's do this process again. I'm going to skip one petal for now and work on this one. The reason for that is I don't want to work on two consecutive petals just because I want each of the edges to be nice and crisp. If I started on this one right now, this petal is not dry yet, so you'd have a little bit of bleeding between the two. I'll come back to that, but for now I'm working on the bottom petal. I will do the same exact process, starting with my dark pink, adding that color down at the very bottom. Again, we'll be blending it out. These initial strokes really don't matter too much, but it just needs to be in the general area that you'd like. I'll rinse off the pigment and start to pull that color up. I want to have a gradual gradient. I'm rinsing off my brush every few stroke, it remains nice and clean. I'm just going to bring that color into a very light value of pink. That's where I want it to meet up with a very, very light value of yellow. This exercise is great for water control too, because if you have too much water on your brush, it'll be pooling up. And the two colors just really won't blend well. But if you don't have enough water, again, you'll have streakiness happening. This is another great project to work on your water control and just finding that happy medium between having too much water and not having enough water. Now I'm grabbing my yellow and doing the same thing, blocking in that color at the very top, rinsing all of that off. And then blending it down. Just softening those edges out. Rinsing off my brush again and pulling that color towards the pink. You'll also notice that I'm skipping over these little folded sections of the petals. You can see in the example painting, each of these petals has this little curled section as just a little bit of light pink to show that curve. But I'm going to go and add those at the very end. For now, I'm just painting the main sections and then we'll go back to that towards the end. But let's go ahead and do one more in real time. I'm going to do this one since there's plenty of separation between the two. Again, you want to make sure you're not directly painting another petal right next to it, just so you can keep all of the edges nice and clean. The shape of this one is a little bit thinner. I'm just starting by lining the outer edge. Just being a little more mindful of the line here and using more control, rinsing off the brush and pulling that color towards the center, gently getting lighter and lighter as I do so. Then once again, grabbing that warm yellow and adding a little bit of that color towards the top. This is a smaller petal, so I don't want to add too much. But then I'll rinse off that color and start pulling it down towards the pink. Gradually becoming a lighter and lighter value until it meets with that light pink. Really focusing on my water control here, that is the basic technique that we'll be doing. Now that these petals are dry, I can go ahead and finish the last two. It's the same exact process. I'll go ahead and speed up this part, but again, you'll start with your inner color, which in my case I'm using that dark pink. Add your second color on the other side and gradually work them together so they blend with a nice light value in the center. Then we'll meet back up to do the folded parts and add in the little buds. All right, so the main parts of all the petals are done. So I'll give it a minute to dry and then we'll go ahead and paint the little folded curled edges and the buds. 19. Plumeria Buds: All right. All the main sections of the petals are dry, So now we can work on the curled edges and the little buds. I'll show you the sample ones here. You can see on the curled edges for each of these. They're pretty much the same technique of starting a little darker and then easing your way into a lighter value. But overall, it's much lighter because it's just that underside edge that's curling over. You want to show the shadow here at the bottom, and then the lighter edge is basically clear at the top. We'll start with that and then we'll move on to the buds. I'll start with this section here because it's the biggest, it'll be the easiest to show you. I'll load up my brush with a fairly dark value of pink. It's not as dark as the main section, but it will be the darkest pink of this little section, just lining the edge here, rinsing off the pigment. And then starting to smooth it out a bit and bring it up to the very top again. You want this left edge to be the darkest value because that's where it's curling underneath, that's where the shadow would be. Then this section up at the top where it almost connects with the main petal, is going to be a lot lighter. You really don't need to overwork this. You can already tell that this part is just curling over there. Don't worry about putting in too much detail, but just make sure it's darkest on the bottom edge and then gradually getting lighter. That's all I'm going to do. Let's do that one on the next one as well. Starting with a darker value here, bringing it up along the edge, rinsing off all that pigment, and smoothing it out. It's a very simple process and I'll continue doing the same one all the way across the petals. This is a pretty thin section, I'm just barely adding a touch of color. Softening that edge a bit and then doing the same thing on the other edge as well. Starting darker with a medium value of pink, leaving the darker value on the part that would have the shadow that's curling underneath. And then using clean water to blend it out. There we go. Now we'll move on to the little flower beds. I'm going to do the dark pink that I used for the center and we'll do a lot of the same technique, starting dark and blending it out. I'm going to start with the very dark value here at the very base of the bud. Bring it a little bit up the edge, rinse off that brush, and start to pull up that color to a much lighter value. You can have a lot of fun making these little beds however you'd like. If you want them to be yellow, they can be yellow. If you want them to be a lighter pink, they can be a lighter pink. It is totally up to you here, but I just like to have that gradient in a lot of my paintings, even if it doesn't look hyper realistic, it just gives a nice elegant, loose effect to the painting because you have some contrast in the value from light to dark, as opposed to if you had all one solid shade or one value of pink, it would look pretty flat and dull. But even just having the slight gradient makes it more intriguing and interesting. Now I'll do the same thing on the other one, just starting by outlining the outer edge, rinsing off all that pigment so I have clean bristles to work with. Then gently blending it out and creating that soft transition from dark to light. So feel free to continue doing this across all of the little beds and you can make as many or as few as you'd like. All right. Our plumeria is looking very beautiful. And now the last step is to use the tip of your brush. I'm using a size one, grabbing a medium shade of brown. I'm going to lightly connect these buds to the main flower using a very light hand here, barely applying any pressure, and just connecting those buds directly to the main flower. Feel free to use whatever shade of brown you'd like. I'm just using a medium worn brown and continue connecting there we have it, our beautiful plumeria flower. I hope you enjoyed painting this one. It's always one of my favorites. I just love the process of blending these two colors together. I think it's so fun. Again, there are so many variations of plumeria that you can do. I recommend checking out some different reference images of Plumeria and yeah. Feel free to try out another combination if you'd like. 20. Ginger Basics: We'll move on to the Hawaiian ginger flower. I wasn't actually personally too familiar with these until I moved to Hawaii, but once I saw them, it was love at first sight. Here are a couple of reference images as you can see. Some of them have that beautiful soft pink color, while others are a bold, vibrant red, which is the one that I'll be painting in the upcoming lesson. The main element that I noticed right off the bat is the transition from lighter red or lighter pink petals at the top that gradually darken into a dark pink or red at the bottom. That's something I'll definitely want to capture in the painting. There's also a gradient within the petals, as you can see those lighter areas easing into the darker ones. For my painting, I'll be using a variety of values of this one red color. And then for the stem, I'll be using sap green, deep sap green, and a touch of indigo as well. But if you'd rather paint a pink one, that is totally fine too. This technique will be the same either way. I also actually painted a pink version as part of my tropical collection that I mentioned in the first video. That's why I wanted to try it out with the red color this time instead. Once you choose your colors, we'll start painting in the next section. 21. Ginger Petals Demo: Now we can get started on this beautiful red Hawaiian ginger flower. Now this is one of those projects that will start to feel a little bit repetitive, just because we're going to be using the same technique on all of these little individual petals. Now of course, as we mentioned earlier, the difference, we'll be using lighter values towards the top and then use more saturated darker values at the bottom. But in general, it'll be the same process all the way down. I really want you to be able to follow along with this technique easily because these little petals are so small. I'm going to show you up close example first. Here's a sample of what the petals will look like, but I'm doing a blown up version, so it's a little easier for you to see, but I'll be using a size five round brush for this demo. I'll be loading up my red color. Of course, like I said, you can also do pink if you'd like. But I'm just going to start by applying a good amount of really dark saturated value down at the bottom of this little petal. Right now it's a creamy saturated texture. I'm just placing that down on the bottom and up to sides a little bit. I'll rinse off my brush completely, just like we've done on the other projects. I'll start slowly blending up this pigment into a lighter value at the top. We are starting with that deep dark red at the very bottom, then just using our clean water to slowly start to bring up that color, that we end with a very light value at the top of this petal. Again, this is just a blown up version. We'll be actually working with much smaller petals if you decide to do the sketch that I provided. But I just wanted to be able to show you what this looks like up close again at the top section is very light value, pretty much just clear water. But I want to have a very gradual change from that light value to the deep, dark red at the bottom. Again, you can blend for as long as you want or as little as you want. This is generally how I like to do it. You can see on my sample painting here that I start dark at the bottom, gradually get lighter at the top. Since we're not doing hyper realistic style, you could just drop in some color and do a couple of swipes to blend it up. I'm somewhere in the middle. It's not super detailed, super blended. But it's also not to loose or abstract, and I don't have any blooms or splotches going on. I'm somewhere in the middle. But it is up to you and your stylistic preferences. 22. Ginger Petals Practice: I'm going to start with my very top petals, and I have my size five brush. I have a medium value of the red. Remember on every petal you want to go dark to light, but also on the overall flower, we're going dark to light. Just keep that in mind. I'm going to start by adding some of that at the base of this petal. Rinsing off my brush completely so it's clean water. Then pulling some of that color upward, it's a nice gentle gradient there. If you'd like, you can go back in and tap in a little bit of a darker value, just at the very bottom of this petal, just to get a little more contrast. Now let's work on the next one. Generally, I like to skip around just a little bit because I want to keep my lines nice and crisp. You can see each individual petal here, Whereas, if I start immediately working on the one right next to it, while it's still wet, it's going to bleed and become just really messy. Skip around, but stay in the same general area. That way you can give your petals plenty of time to dry. In between, I'm moving down here to this petal and making it slightly darker. Then I'll start pulling that color up, just like we did on the last one. By now, you can really start to tell that my individual style has a lot of blending and contrast and really just accentuating those soft gradients. That's just what I enjoy that's reflected in almost all of my artwork, no matter what I'm painting. But in this course, I really want you to apply your own unique style and your own techniques and preferences to the projects that we're painting. If you want to do your paintings a little more realistic or you want them to be more expressive, or maybe you don't want to sketch at all and you just want to make a more loose expressionistic version. That is totally fine too. I'm going to move up to this petal now that that top one is dry. Again, for these top sections, you really want to start light. Even my darkest color in these upper petals are pretty darn light because I want to have room to get darker and darker as I work my way down. If I start out too dark at the very top, I'm not going to have enough room to go darker as I work my way down. As I mentioned, you will get a lot of practice with this technique because we'll be doing the same technique all the way down. But just for the sake of learning, I'm going to do a couple of the petals down here at the bottom, just so you can see the difference between the light value ones and the dark value ones. The darker value ones, I'm going to use a lot more of this heavily pigmented mixture directly from my palette. I'm going to plop some of that pigment down. You can see it's very heavy, very creamy texture. I still want to achieve a nice gradient here, but it's going to be less of a contrast between the dark values and the light values. Even the lightest value of these bottom petals will be pretty dark compared to the ones at the top. But I'm just carefully using the tip of my brush here, and that gives me plenty of control, create that gradient. If I use too big of a brush, it's going to be really hard to capture that smooth gradient because I'll just have too much water, too much paint. I like to work with small brushes. Here you can see I have a nice gradient still, but overall, the petal as a whole is a lot darker than those ones up at the top. Let's do one more like that, starting very heavily pigmented. And let's do one of these side petals. I'm placing some of that dark red starting up very heavily pigmented, Just using the tip of my brush, rinsing it off, then gradually pulling it up and blending up to a lighter value. I actually want this one to be even darker, so I'm going to go in again. Since it's still wet, it's very easy to just apply a little bit more color. It just blends itself. All right, there we have some good practice with the light ones and the dark ones. Now I'm going to speed up the rest of this, but you're going to be doing the same technique all the way down the petal, starting light, getting dark, all right? So as I finish up these last couple of petals, feel free to continue working at your own pace. And then we'll give it some time to dry and work on the stem. 23. Ginger Stem: Now all of our petals are done. It's looking great. We have a gradient, and now we can get started on the stem for the ginger. You can see on mine. Of course, as I always say, you are free to express your creative freedom here. But if you want to follow along with what I did, I started with sap green, which is a very yellowy green. And then it blends into a more cool green with some indigo and deep sap green. That's just the look that I like going into the darker where it meets the petals and lighter at the bottom of the stem. Again, starting with sap green, which is a more warm, yellowy green. I'm just going to line the very outer left side of the stem. I'll rinse off all that pigment and smooth it out a little bit. Even if you prefer to just keep the whole stem one single color, I do recommend still having a little bit of contrast between light and dark values on it that will just help to make the stem look a little more realistic. I'm just softening everything out here, just like we did in the other lessons. If you find that it's becoming a little too saturated, you can always rinse off your brush and just soak up a little bit of that excess color again. That's called the lifting technique. I'll just add back in a little bit more of that sap green until I get it to a point that I'm happy with. Now I'm going to move more into my deep sap green, which is a darker, cooler color. I'll do the same thing. I want to have a gradual blend from the light green to the dark green. I'll start by just placing a little of that color down, rinsing off my brush, and softening out those edges. You do have to work fairly quickly here so that you don't get any harsh edges. If the paint dries, I don't want to harsh line between the light green and the dark green. I just want to work while it's still wet so I can create that nice blend. At the very top, I like to go pretty dark. I'm adding quite a bit of my deep sap green up there and blending it out. I'm going to leave this little petal here blank for now because I want to go in with a really deep dark indigo. That's just the look that I prefer for now. I'll just leave it. I'm adding a little bit of the deep sap green on the right side as well for the shadow. Rinse off that brush and soften it out. I'm just utilizing the wet on wet technique here. I'm not trying to control it too much. I do want to have a smooth blend, but I'm really just going back and forth between dropping in some darker color, blending it out, just creating a nice little texture. Every now and then, I'm taking a step back, looking at the painting with fresh eyes, seeing where I want a little more color, the shadows are looking. Just be sure to do that with your painting every now and then too. It helps to just look at it from afar, especially when you get a little too zoomed into your painting. I like to just take a step back and just view it with fresh eyes. There we go, I'm going to let this dry and then I'll add that final dark chunk. I'm going to go really dark. Here I have indigo that I added to my deep sap green mixture. I'll do the same thing, starting by blocking in some of that color, making it nice and bold, just like this. And then rinsing off my brush. I have clean water to work with. And starting to gently blend that out using my size one brush here. It's very hard to keep a clean brush when you're working with indigo because it is so dark and just saturated and bold. I'm really just having to rinse off my brush almost after every single stroke because I don't just want to have a solid dark indigo chunk. That's our final project. The red Hawaiian ginger. 24. Final Thoughts & Resources: We come to the end of this class, I truly hope you've found joy and inspiration in exploring the botanicals of Hawaii with me and capturing the beauty of these tropical plants and flowers with watercolor. Well, we painted five beautiful projects. Today, there are so many more tropical plants and flowers that you can bring to life as you continue on in your painting journey. Now that you've mastered new techniques like lifting, blending, layering, and taking advantage of the wet on wet techniques, Your possibilities are endless. You can now confidently paint tropical flora for sketchbook spreads, digitize them for surface pattern designs, turn them into trendy stickers, and so much more. If you'd like to learn how to turn your unique designs into greeting cards, I recommend checking out my greeting card class that walks you through my step by step process for designing, printing, and selling highly profitable greeting cards all from the comfort of your own home so you can see your artwork come to life on a tangible product. One final thing before we close out this class. I've said it in my other classes, and I will continue to say it again. The number one thing you can do to improve your watercolor skills is practice. Practice, and then practice some more. Muscle memory is an incredible tool. Each time you sit down to paint, whether it's for 5 minutes or 5 hours, whether it's a masterpiece or something that ends up in your recycling bin, you're still building up that memory, honing your skills and developing your own unique style. But don't forget to have fun and enjoy the process along the way. I want to thank you again for joining me in this tropical watercolor class and as always, happy painting for me to you.