Watercolor Herbs | Louise De Masi | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Introduction and Class Project


    • 3.



    • 4.

      Sage Initial Washes - Stage 1


    • 5.

      Sage 2nd Layer - Stage 2


    • 6.

      Sage Veins - Stage 3


    • 7.

      Sage Cast Shadows - Stage 4


    • 8.

      Sage Stems & Finishing Off - Stage 5


    • 9.

      French Sorrel 1st & 2nd Wash - Stage 1


    • 10.

      French Sorrel Adding Detail - Stage 2


    • 11.

      French Sorrel Veins - Stage 3


    • 12.

      French Sorrel a Little More Detail - Stage 4


    • 13.

      French Sorrel Stems - Stage 5


    • 14.

      Rosemary Initial Wash - Stage 1


    • 15.

      Rosemary 2nd Layer - Stage 2


    • 16.

      Rosemary Cast Shadows - Stage 3


    • 17.

      Rosemary Finishing Stems - Stage 4


    • 18.

      Rosemary Flower - Stage 5


    • 19.

      Preparation for printing


    • 20.

      Final Thoughts


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About This Class

Professional watercolor artist and teacher Louise De Masi has an eye for detail. She has developed a style of painting where she begins with loose wet on wet washes and ends with fine realistic rendering. Join her in her home as she shares her painting techniques with you.

In this 81 minute tutorial Louise will guide you through the painting of three different herbs in watercolor - Sage, Rosemary and French Sorrel. The different painting stages of each herb are divided into 5 short videos. 

She will share with you different techniques that she uses in all of her watercolor paintings including:

  • Loading the brush with paint
  • Working wet on wet
  • Working wet on dry
  • Blending colors
  • Lifting color
  • Painting negatively

As an added bonus, Louise demonstrates in Photoshop how she prepares her paintings ready to be printed.

This class is suitable for intermediate painters but beginners will also find it useful. Please explore Louise's other class on Skillshare 'Watercolor Rose.'


Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Louise De Masi

Artist - capturing beauty with watercolour


Hi, I'm Louise DeMasi,

I am a professional watercolour artist and a qualified school teacher from Australia with over 26 years of experience.

I have a Bachelor of Education degree and I understand how people learn. I am co-author of a watercolour painting instruction book by Walter Foster- titled 'The Art of Painting Sea Life in Watercolor'. My work has been featured in Australian Artist's Palette Magazine, Australian Country Craft Magazine and The Sydney Morning Herald.

As a teacher, my goal is to demystify the art-making process and make learning accessible and enjoyable for everyone, regardless of their skill level. I believe in a student centered approach, encouraging exploration, personal expression, and continuous growth. My courses... See full profile

Level: Intermediate

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1. Trailer: Hi, My name is Louise De Masi and I'm a professional watercolor artist. I live in beautiful Sydney, Australia. I've been painting now for 20 years. For the past six years, I've been painting in watercolor, and using this beautiful medium every day is an absolute joy. One of my favorite things to do here in Sydney is visit my art supply shop. It's packed to the roof, it's full of fine art supplies. In this class, I will show you two of my favorite brushes, and I will show you the watercolor paper that I like to use. My focus for this class will be on painting leaves. I'll demonstrate how I paint in these three different herb painting in watercolor; sage, rosemary, and French sorrel. In this class, some of the techniques I'll demonstrate; how I load my brush with paint, how I softly fuse colors together by working wet on wet, how I build up colors gradually through successive washes, and how I live color to create highlights. You'll see how I use a negative painting technique to render the veins on the underside of the leaves, and I'll also show you how I prepare my paintings ready to be printed. So grab your brushes and let's start painting. 2. Introduction and Class Project: I'm in the Blue Mountains West of Sydney. I decided to film my introductions to each video outside in this beautiful location. I took my camera with me in the hope I could find some birds to photograph. Now I didn't find any birds, but I did have a fabulous day with my family. Hi, everyone and welcome to the class. Before you start watching, there are two things I want you to know about my painting process. I covered this in my first video, watercolor rose, but it bears repeating. The first is the why I put the paint on the palette. I use a pallet with sloping wheels. What I do is I put my paint on the highest point and then I waited. The water repaint then pulls at the bottom of the wheel. When I load my brush, I do one of two things, I either use the water repaint at the bottom, or I wipe my brush through the hard paint at the top of the palate. The other thing I want you to know is how I get my drawing onto the watercolor paper. I also demonstrated this in my first class. What I do, I take a photo of my subject and then I print it out on my printer to the size that I want the painting to be. I then trace this object onto some tracing paper with a sharpie. Then I use a lightbox to trace it onto the paper. If you don't have a lightbox, you can just put it up against a window and trace it that way. Or if you want to draw your subjects straight onto the paper, you can do that too. It's up to you, whatever works for you. Now you project for this class is to create two or three leaf watercolor paintings. Use some of the techniques that I've demonstrated in the following videos. You can paint some herbs if you want to, or you can just gather some leaves from your garden and paint those. I work from photographs. But if you'd rather work from life, that's okay too. Please upload your paintings in the your project section of the class because I'd love to see them. I also want to start running about these classes on my website and I'd love to add some of your photos to it. In the next video, I'll show you some of the supplies that I use. Let's get started. 3. Materials : In this video, I'll show you all the materials that I use to complete my paintings. Now please, don't be concerned if you don't have what I have, just use whatever you've got. The brushes are first. Now of course, I used my favorite brush for these paintings. This is a Da Vinci Squirrel Mop, and this is a number 3. I also used a Da Vinci Nova. This is a fine brush and I use this brush a lot for detail work. This is zero, and this is a short flat bristle brush and it's very handy for lifting out highlights and for fixing any mistakes. I use a mechanical pencil. This is an HB and a normal pencil will also be okay to use. I also used an eraser for removing pencil lines. I use a water spray bottle to wet my paints, and this is my water container that I use to wash my brushes. I use kitchen towel to dab my brush on, and I love this ceramic palette. I love it because it's ceramic and it doesn't stain like plastic pallets do. Also, the wells are sloped, which is important for the way I paint. I always start with a clean palette too. I use Arches Hot Press paper which is hard wearing and it has a smooth velvety surface. I also use Saunders Waterford paper, which is similar to Arches, but it's not quite as white. Now for the paints. The first paint coloring is called Phthalo Yellow Green, it's a Daniel Smith paint. I often use this color as an under-wash to give my greens a bit of punch. Second color I use is, Sap Green, I use this color quite lot. This is Deep Sap Green, which is darker than Sap Green. I used perylene maroon. Now I'm not sure if I'm pronouncing that correct, but this is a Winsor and Newton color. This is French Ultramarine Blue, which is another color I use in almost every painting. I mix the French Ultramarine Blue with Burnt Sienna to make a lovely gray color. I'll use a little bit of Burnt Umber and some Ultramarine Violet for the rosemary flower. So that's all the supplies I used to complete the whole paintings. 4. Sage Initial Washes - Stage 1: It's time to begin painting. In this video, I'll begin my sage painting, you will see me prone the paper with water, and I'll lay in the first wash. I recently completed a collection of vegetable paintings, and I wanted to paint some herbs to add to the collection. So I went for a visit to my favorite nursery and I bought some. I bought myself some sage and some fringe sorrow, and both of these herbs feature in this tutorial. The first color I'm going to use is phthalo yellow green. It's a beautiful bright green. I place it at the top of my palette, I give it a quick squirt of water, and I'm ready to begin. The first thing I do is prone my paper with some clean water. Now, I paint the water carefully on the leaf exactly where I want my paint to go. I'm actually using a number four squirrel mop here, but I found that it was too large for the painting, so I swapped it for my number three soon after I started. I always take my time with this water application because when I put the paint on, it's going to go wherever I have put the water, and I need to be careful. I pick my paint up from the top of the palate where the hard paint is, rather than use the watery paint. Because my paper is wet, the paint flows freely for me and all I have to do is push it where I want it. The dampness of the paper will leave me with a nice, smooth application of paint, and there won't be any hard edges left anywhere, and I can take my time and not rush because the paint won't dry too quickly. Same again here, I'm just carefully wetting the paper, and I load my brush with the hard paint at the top of the palate. Now, I just let the water on the paper move the paint around, I just give it a little nudge here and there. I'm turning my paper here because I don't want to lean over the leaf that I've just painted and smudge it. I can wet more than one leaf here because this is just the under wash. In my next application, I will paint the leaves individually. I've put a little bit of water onto the stems, and I just run that paint onto the leaves. I'm going to keep going with this under wash until I have the whole plant covered in phthalo yellow green. 5. Sage 2nd Layer - Stage 2: In this video, I paint the second layer onto the sage leaves. I use sap green, and I'll show you why I wet the paper before I apply the paint. I'm adding some sap green to my palette, and this is a color that I use all the time. In this lesson, I will demonstrate how to apply the next layer of paint, which is sap green, and I want to show you how I get that mottled look to the leaves. I've painted two leaf shapes here in the fellow yellow green. They have dried, and I want you to see the reason why I work wet on wet. First, I'll apply some watery sap green to this dry leaf. Now, I'll leave that one to dry, and I'll put some water on the bottom one. Now, instead of using the watery paint, I pick up the hard paint with the tip of the brush, and I just dip it softly, letting the moisture on the paper disperse the pigment. I leave the areas where I don't put any paint at all. This allows the hand wash to show through, creating that lovely mottled effect. I always pay my attention to the edges of the leaves, and the moisture on the paper takes care of the middle part of the leaf for me. You can see the difference between the top leaf and the bottom leaf, I think the bottom leaf is much more interesting to look at. I've been busy doing them on the sage leaves, wetting them first and then applying the sap green that I took from the top of the palette onto the damp paper. Here I'm working a section at a time because I want the vein of the leaf and the stem of the other leaf to show through. I'm applying the water on either side of the vein, leaving the vein dry. Again, I load my brush from the top of the palette. I run the paint down the edge of the leaf, giving it a little wiggle to show those wiggly edges. I also run it carefully down the side of the vein. You'll notice that my attention again is on the edges of the leaf rather than what's happening in the middle of the leaf. Then I'll just drop a little bit of paint here in the middle part of the leaf. Same again here, I'm mainly concerned with the edges of the leaf, I'll let the moisture on the paper take care of the rest. I hold the brush up on its tip or its point a lot when I'm painting, that's why I love this brush because it has such a perfect point. If you noticed how I hold my brush, it's resting on the side of my pointer finger rather than on the fleshy part of my hand, between my thumb and my finger. This is how I keep the brush up on its tip. When I use the tip or the point of the brush, I seem to have better brush control, so take notice of how you hold your brush when you're painting. I have to leave that one to dry, so to avoid smudging it, I turn my paper. A little bit of water on this leaf just like the others, but I want to show you this one in particular because I want you to see how I do the edges. You can see me painting the little wiggles along the edge of leaf here. I take the brush just past the wet paper, and onto the dry paper to do this. Here we are at the end of the second stage of the sage leaves. 6. Sage Veins - Stage 3: In this video, I start to add some details to the sage leaves. You'll say how I use a negative painting technique to render the vines on the underside of the leaves. Now I'm adding some deep sap green to my palette, and I'm going to start painting some data with my fine brush. I've drawn a few veins on this leaf with my pencil, and when I'm with the paper, I leave a tiny little gap of dry paper with a vernice. That's the beauty of this brush that I'm using and the reason why I use it up on its tip. This is my Da Vinci Nova, and I'm using this because I know I have tiny little spices to get into. I pick up the hard paint at the top of the palate, and in I go into those tiny little crevices. I'll spin my paper around here so you can see it better. I'm painting the dark shadow on the underside of that leaf. Because the brushes are fine, I have to keep reloading it with paint all the time. Now again, I give all my attention to the edges of this little section, being careful to avoid the inner vein of the leaf and the other veins running through to the edges of the leaf. Because the paper is damp, all I have to do is drop a few little drops of paint here and there into the middle. I've taken care of that shadow underneath the leaf, and now what I'm doing is defining the middle vein and that little vein running through to the edge of the leaf. Now I want to show you how I painted this entire leaf, but it gets the same treatment as the one that I've just completed. I seem to have lost a little bit of the vein on the top of this leaf. So I just get my flat bristle brush and wet it with some water, and then just gently scrub away some of the paint. I'm using my squirrel mop here rather than the fine brush because I have more room to move around and I don't have to get into a tiny little space. One other thing I want you to notice is that, while I'm darkening the leaf and adding detail and definition, I'm not completely covering the layer beneath. I still want to be able to see the beautiful mottled look that I created in stage two. I'm just about finished the third stage of the sage leaves. There are few more things yet to do, such as the stems and the shadows, and that is what will bring these leaves to life. 7. Sage Cast Shadows - Stage 4 : In this video, I lift off some paint to reveal some veins. I add a few dark areas to the leaves and I paint the cast shadows. This is where I left off in Stage 3 of the sage painting. I'm using my damp bristle brush to gently lift away some paint to reveal the vein of the leaf. When you do this just use a tissue or some paper towel to block the wet paint. I'm wetting the right side of this leaf with some water, because I see a slight shadow here on my reference photo. I want the sap green just to gently merge with the layer underneath. I pick up the hard paint at the top of the palette and then I just use the tip of the brush just to run it over that wet area. Now I'm loading my brush with some water so that I can use it to soften the edge of the sap green where it meets the under layer of paint. I'm removing the top layer of paint again with my bristle brush so that I can reveal the vein of the leaf. I'm painting on dry paper here, this is actually the first part of the painting where I have painted on dry paper. The area is on a small and it's dark and I can paint it fairly quickly, so it doesn't need to be wet. I'm picking up some deep sap green with my brush now and I'm going to deep in that color on that area that I just painted. I'm just going to drop the paint straight onto the wet paint. There's a dark area on this leaf as well, it has soft edges so I'll wet the paper first where I'll want the darker color to go and the darker paint will just merge softly with the lighter paint underneath. I'm just softening the edge of the paint again with some water on my brush. Now I'm just deepening that color with the deep sap green straight onto the wet paint. There is a cast shadow on this leaf, I'm just wetting the area where the shadow goes first before I paint it because I want the color to be soft not too hard. Now I'm just dropping in a little bit of the deep sap green just to darken it in places here and there. I think you can see what I'm doing with this leaf here. I wet the area first to dampen the paper, I leave a little dry section for the vein, and then I pick up some sap green from the top of the palate to begin adding some definition. There's another cast shadow I can see on my reference photo, so I have wet the area where the shadow is and now I'm applying some deep sap green onto the wet paper. You can see on my reference photo that this leaf is darker than the leaf that's behind it. So I'm deepening the color with some deep sap green on wet paper. As I work my way up the leaf, I've got less paint on my brush so that helps to create the soft transition from the dark color to the lighter color. Now I'm deepening that area in there with some deep sap green. You can see on the reference photo that that's the darkest area on the whole painting. Okay. I'm nearly finished. I still have to paint the stems, paint a few more shadows, and tidy up some edges and I'll do all of that in the next video. 8. Sage Stems & Finishing Off - Stage 5: I will complete the sage leaves in this video, I'll demonstrate how I paint the stems, I'll deepen the color in a few areas, and I'll tidy up edges with my fine brush. I'm painting the back of this small leaf with my fine brush, I dampen the area first, but I left a little tiny gap of dry paper where the veins are. I'm using sap-green at the moment. Now I'm deepening that color with some deep sap green and I'm just dropping it onto the wet paint that's underneath. The pigment absorbs into the paper and when it's wet, it looks dark enough, but it seems to appear larger when it dries, so I'm coming back onto this shadow just to deepen the color. This is the darker turned back edge on this leaf. I'm using deep sap green in my fine brush on dry paper here. I can see the base of the leaf vein on my reference photo, so I'm lifting some paint here with my damp bristle brush. I'm using some sap green in my fine brush to darken the side of the vein here. The paper is dry. I'm using my squirrel mop to apply some water at the top half of this leaf just to soften any hard edges that are there. I'm running some water down the stem because I'm about to use my fine brush to paint sap green down the edge, and I want the paint just to flay softly into the steam. The water will help with that. The water moves the paint from the edge and onto the stem, helping to create the illusion of roundness. Now I'm going to go ahead and do that to all of these stems. This is the cast shadow on the stem. Before it dries, I'll drop in some deep sap green to deepen the color. This is the part of the painting that I enjoy the most, over little fiddly bits that really bring the painting to life. I'm deepening the color of this little leaf with some deep sap green on damp paper. I'm using the deep sap green again on the edge of this leave just to define the edge. Same again here, I dampen the paper first and that helps to create that lovely soft edge. Really, you can do this wherever you think your edges need a little bit of a tidy up. I'm no longer referring to my reference photo. I'm just looking where I need to tidy up edges and finish things off. It's often difficult to know when to say that you have finished a painting. I find that I get to a point where I'm happy with what I've done, but I'm fearful of going any further with it in case I ruin it. So when I get to that stage in my mind, I know it's time to put my brush down. That's my sage painting completed. All up, I think I probably spent about four hours painting it. 9. French Sorrel 1st & 2nd Wash - Stage 1: It's time to start some new leaves. In this video, I'll begin painting the French sorrel leaves. You'll see me painting in the first wash, and when that's dry, I paint the second layer over the top. This is the French sorrel that I bought at the nursery. It has pretty green leaves and red stems and veins. So I snipped a few leaves off with some scissors, and I placed them on a piece of white paper, and I took a photo of them so that I could use the reference photo to paint them. I transferred the drawing of the leaves onto my paper, and I begin my initial washes just as before by wetting the leaves with water one at a time, making sure that I've covered each leaf completely with water right up to the edges. Then I pick up some fellow yellow green and I wash it over the top remembering that the water on the paper stops any hard edges from forming and it gives me a nice clean wash. Here are all the leaves with the first layer of paint. I've dried the leaves with a hairdryer and now I'm rewetting this one carefully. Now I'm doing it carefully because I don't want to disturb the first wash that I did. Now I am going to do exactly what I did with the sage leaves. I'm going to apply sap green over the first wash. The paper's damp. I pay attention to the edges of the leaves and the edge of the vein, and I pretty much let the moisture on the paper take care of the rest. I might put a few little dabs here and there in the middle part of the leaf. But otherwise, it's just the water dispersing the pigment for me. I make sure I type that sap green paint right to the edge of the leaf. I'm doing the same thing on the other side of the leaf, and I'll make sure that I left the vein of the leaf dried in plenty water on that. I had some green on the side of my hand and I got it on the paper accidentally. The flat bristle brush is good for this. I just wet it with water and give it a gentle scrub and it should lift off as long as the paint is a non-sustaining color. If the paint was a staining color, I'd be in trouble, and I would probably have to fill in the background. There are the first two washes on the French sorrel completed, and that wasn't difficult at all. In the next video, I'll show you how I added some detail to the leaves. 10. French Sorrel Adding Detail - Stage 2: I had a few dark areas onto the leaves in this video and I'm still working wet onto it. So the leaves have dried and now I'm going to start adding some detail. Now on my reference photo I can see that this leaf is a little bit darker on the right side. So I damp in the paper where I want the paint to go and I'll drop in another layer of sap green in that area. I hope you can see that that leaf is slightly darker there on that side. Because these leaves are fairly plying apart from the red veins, I'm searching for shadows and highlights to make them look a little bit more interesting. There's a shadow on the leaf there, so I'm just wetting that area ready for the paint. Now I'm going to place my brush on the darkest side of the shadow which is closest to the vein. Most of the paint will be offloaded there and then I can wipe the paint off my brush, dip into some water, and soften the edge if I need to. I'm darkening the edges of this leaf, you can see in the reference photo that it's darker along there. I said in an earlier video that as the paint dries it appears larger than when it was wet, so I find that I often have to reapply the paint just to deepen it slightly. So as soon as I've finished this little turn back on this leaf, it'll be time for me to draw the leaves off with a hair drier and get ready for the next stage of the painting. 11. French Sorrel Veins - Stage 3: This is a quick little video where I show you how I paint those pretty red veins with some maroon paint. I'm adding some perylene maroon to my pallet so we can start painting the veins of the leaves. Now I'll turn my paper around so that my hand doesn't cover my work. I also find it easier to pull strokes towards myself rather than away from myself. I'm wetting the paper with a vein goal because I want the edges of the vein to be soft. I don't want a hard red line or a sharp red line. As I move towards the tip of the leaf, the vein becomes thinner. So I won't listen less paint on my brush as I work my way towards that tip. So that's why you see me wiping the brush on the paper towel over time. The veins after the side of the leaf have been absorbed, I've switched my fine brush. Because the brushes are fine, I have to keep reloading it with paint all the time. I'm giving the vein a second layer of paint to darken it. I didn't wet the paper this time, because I have that lovely soft edge from the first layer, and I can just run the brush down the middle of the line I created before. So there are all my veins completed. Now in the next video, I'll add a little bit more detail to one of the leaves. 12. French Sorrel a Little More Detail - Stage 4: We're on the home stretch now, I'm about to show you one of the reasons I like to work from photos, and I will add some further detail to one of the leaves. When I look at the leaves there is not much variation in the surface that I can paint, so this is where taking a photo and using my iPad to view the reference photo comes in handy. I can zoom in and see some subtle variations that I can't necessarily see with my naked eye. So I'm going to draw a few guidelines for myself here and there. Now I'm not going to paint all the lumps and shadows that I see, I'm not trying to paint a scientific painting of the leaf; I just want to add a bit of interest to my painting. You can see the darker green against the crease in the leaf, and then that darker color recedes as it moves away from the crease. So I'll wet that area of the leaf carefully, and I'll pick up some sap green from the top of the palate with my fine brush. I put the paint down against the darkest area first, and I allow the water on the paper to disperse the pigment for me. I do the same again here; I'll wet the paper carefully. I pick up some paint from the top of the palate, and I place that paint against the crease first so that the intensity of the color will be where I want it. I use my bigger brush that is damp with water to soften the edge if I need to. I have to make sure my bigger brush isn't too wet, or it'll wash all the paint away, so I make sure I give it a dab on the paper towel before I use it. I'm painting over the veins with some more of the maroon paint, just to deepen the color down the center. So that's the French sorrel leaf stump, and now all I have to do is paint the stems. 13. French Sorrel Stems - Stage 5: It's time to finish the French Sorrel now. In this video, I'll paint the stems, and I'll show you a little trick you can do if you need to tidy some of the edges. I am dampening the stem slightly getting them ready to take the paint. I don't need a lot of water. I just want the paper slightly damp so that the paint flows nicely for me. This is the maroon color. I'm using hard paint from the top of the palette and I'm just running it down the damp stem. Here are the stems with the first layer of paint. Now the paint is dried and I'm ready to start the next layer. I'm using my fine brush on dry paper here and I'm just going to run the maroon paint down the left side of this stem to darken it. Now the paper is still dry here. I could probably use my larger brush to apply the paint, but I just don't trust myself. I don't want the paint to get away from me. I've finished my stems and now I want to show you a way to tidy them up if you need to. Here are two coloring pencils. Now I didn't mention this in the supplies video because I hadn't planned on using them and they aren't really necessary, but I just wanted to show you what you can do if any of your edges are a bit jagged or untidy looking. This are prismacolor colored pencils. The top pencil is pomegranate and the lighter color is called light beige. I'm using the light beige pencil to tidy any rough edges on the largest amount of the stems, and I can also add a few highlights with it. The pomegranate pencil can tidy any rough edges on the dark areas of the stems. This my French Sorrel Painting completed. In the next video, I'm going to start washing in the leaves of the rosemary. 14. Rosemary Initial Wash - Stage 1: I begin painting the rosemary in this video or washing the first layer of paint, but this time, my paper is dry. I'll also show you how I mix two colors together to create another color. I have some rosemary growing at my home in the country. So when I was there last, I broke a sprig of it off, and I rested it against my dress and I took a photo of it with my phone so that I could use it when I went back to Sydney where all my paints are. So I traced the rosemary photo that I printed and I transfer it onto my watercolor paper, and now I'm tidying up the tracing with my pencil. I'm using fallow yellow green to wash over the leaves. The paper is dry this time because each leaf is thin and I can paint them fairly quickly, then I'm not worried about the paint drying too fast and leaving hard edges anywhere. Here I've completed the first wash over the top of the leaves. I'm placing some French ultramarine blue onto my palette and some burnt sienna. Both of them into the same well. A quick squirt of water and I use my brush to mix them together to form gray. Now I'm using that gray to paint some areas on the stem and the leaves, and my paper is dry again. I'm keeping an eye on my reference photo as I paint and I'm placing the gray wherever I think I see it. So this is where I'm up to now. I've got my leaves washed in, then I've got some gray where I need it, and I'm ready to start painting my next layer of paint. 15. Rosemary 2nd Layer - Stage 2: I paint the second layer of paint in this video, I work wet on wet. Then when the second layer of paint is dry, I add a further layer in places to deepen the color. Although I didn't wet the leaves to paint the first wash, I am going to wet them for the second layer of paint. I am going to paint these leaves just as I did with the sage and the french sorrel. I pick up some sap green from the top of the palette, and I start to apply it to the wet leaf. Again, I'm paying particular attention to the edges of the leaves. I'm holding my brush right up on its tip or its point. I'm only going to put the paint along the right side edge because I can see in my reference photo that the left side of this leaf is lighter in color. I wash my brush and I pickup some thalo yellow green, and I apply it to the left side of the leaf just to increase the color of that under wash. I'm doing exactly the same thing here. I use my reference photo to guide me to where I need to put the darker color. I'll get in closer here for you so you can see what I'm doing. I'm wetting the paper so it's just damp enough to move the pigment around for me. The paint stops just short of that other edge, which is what I want because I don't want it going all the way to the other side. Now, I'm going to really carefully take some of that paint and run it down the edge. Now, I've gone just outside the edge of the leaf where the paper is dry. When I want a nice point on my brush, like I did when I ran the paint down the edge of the leaf a moment ago, I give it a little twirl when I pick the paint up from the palette, and that gives me that beautiful point. So I've completed the second layer of paint all over the rosemary leaves. Now, the paint is dried. What I'm going to do now is re-wet some of the leaves and use my fine brush to deepen the color on the dark side of them. I'm picking up some deep sap green this time from the top of the palette. I'm using my fine brush instead of my larger one because I don't want the paint to spread as far this time. I want to have a little more control of where the paint goes. I don't need to do this on all the leaves, I'm just doing it on the leaves that I think look a little bit darker in my reference photo. Okay, I'm happy with that. So now what I have to do is start painting some of the cast shadows that are on the leaves. 16. Rosemary Cast Shadows - Stage 3: It's time for the cast shadows to be painted. This helps to really give the rosemary some form and it helps to lift it off the page. Now I'm going to do this on dry paper just as I did the first wash. So with my wet brush, I pick up some deep sap green, and I paint it on where I see the shadow. I'll probably have to give these two coats of paint because as the paint absorbs into the paper, it doesn't seem to be quite as dark as when I first apply it. When I pick up the paint, I use the hard paint at the top of the pellet so that the paint is nice and dark. Sometimes I pick up more paint and I dab it on when the paper's wet just to deepen the color. So all the shadows are finished now. I did have to come back in a few places, after they dried just to reapply the paint to darken it slightly. 17. Rosemary Finishing Stems - Stage 4: I finished the stem in this video by adding some brown and I darkened it in places. I'm adding some burnt umber to my palette. I make sure I put it on the highest point of the wheel, and then I give it a quick squirt of water. I need some burnt sienna to paint the brown areas on the stem. I don't need to worry about wetting the paper, so I'm just painting on dry paper here. I'm going to darken the side of the stem here, so I'm wetting it first because I want the paint to spread over the stem leaving soft edges. I'm working on dry paper here. It's time to use the burnt umber now, which is dark than burnt sienna. I'm going to paint the darker color on the stem there. I wet the paper first because I don't want a hard edge here. I wet this area up here and I'm applying some deep set green into the darker side. The same again here. I'm just painting as I look at my reference photo. I'm going to finish off this green section and then I'll be ready to start the flowers at the top. 18. Rosemary Flower - Stage 5: Now for the rosemary flower, I'll complete the rosemary in this video, I'll show you how I drop wet paint into wet paint to create a beautiful blend, and I use my bristle brush to remove some of the paint to create highlights on the leaves. I'm going to use some ultramarine violet for the rosemary flower. I start by using some watery paint and I apply it onto the dry paper. The paper is dry because the flower is only tiny and I can paint it really quickly. So it's all washed in. Now I'm picking up some more violet, but this time I use my wet brush to pick up the hard paint. I start to paint the areas on the petals that are a darker shade than the first wash. Again, I'm painting on dry paper. Everything so far on the flower has been painted on dry paper, except for this little one here, and I'll show you how to do that one in a moment. Now while that paint is wet, I'm going to pick up some ultramarine blue and drop it in just to add some interest to the petals. I'm wetting this petal because I want the paint to flow over the petal softly from the edges. This helps to make the petal look curved rather than flat. The same again here, I wet it first and then I paint the violet around the edges, and I'll drop some ultramarine blue in while the paint is still wet. I use my fine brush to ed the fine areas. I'm putting a little bit of burnt umber on this area here because I see some brown on my reference photo. I'm adding some more deep sap green to the shadows to deepen the color further. Now I'm using my flat bristle brush to remove some highlights on the leaves. The brush has been moistened with water and I'm rubbing gently. Then I remove the wet paint by blending it with a tissue or some paper towel. A quick rub over with my eraser to remove pencil lines and I'm all done. So that's the rosemary finished. Now in the next video, I will show you how I prepare my paintings to be printed. 19. Preparation for printing: I sell prints all around the world for my Etsy shop and my website. I've had a request for me to show you how I prepare my paintings ready to be printed. So in this video, I invite you onto my computer screen where you can look over my shoulder and watch how I do that. I've scanned my rosemary painting at 600 DPI and I've saved it on my computer. Now it's open in Photoshop. So the first thing I'm going to do is crop it. I'm going to get off the computer here and show you something. Because a lot of my paintings don't have backgrounds, I discovered early on that I have to erase the background on my skin on the computer before I printed. Because if I don't, my printer will pick up all of the indentations and colors of the watercolor paper, and what happens is I get this pale gray background. This is one of my very first prints that I printed and this is where I discovered that it was important that I had to prepare them in Photoshop before I printed them. In order for my prints to have a lovely crisp white background, I have to erase the background in Photoshop first. So I've just cropped my scan and now I'm going to choose the eraser tool, which is on the left-hand side and that looks like an eraser. Now, after I've clicked on the eraser, I right-click on my mouse, which brings up this box that allows me to change the size of the eraser. So to get rid of as much of the background as quickly as I can, I push the slider to the right to make it bigger and I always move the hardness slider underneath to be a little left of the size of the eraser. Now, I need to make sure that the colored squares are in black and white, and that the foreground color is on black. I'll do that by clicking on the little corner arrows here. Black should be on top. So now I can start to remove the background. Now, I get as close as I can to the rosemary without touching it. I rub all over the background and this gets rid of the bulk of the background. Now, I'll go up here into image adjustments and I'll choose levels. Now, I can show you what's happened. When I move this middle slide up all the way to the right, you can see all of the background that I've erased. Now, all of these yellowy color is what I still have to remove. If I don't remove it, my printer will print it, just the way I showed you on my cockatoo print before. So for to get the eraser closer to the rosemary, I need to enlarge it. I move it to the magnifying glass here on the left, I click on that, then I come to the top to make sure I've got the magnifier with a little plus sign and it's selected. Then, I can click on my image and make it as large as I need. You can see all of the texture of the watercolor paper there and that's what I have to remove. So I go back to my eraser and click on it, and it's way too big. I right-click on my mouse to change the size. Then you can see over here on the left, the black box has been hidden behind the word. I need to click on the little arrow to make black the foreground color again. My eraser is still too large, so I'm going to make it a little bit smaller. So now I can get in nice and close to my painting and I carefully make my way around the edge of the rosemary. I get as close as I can without touching it. Now, I'm going to spend the next part of the video out because we'll be here for half an hour or so if I don't. If you make a mistake and you accidentally erase a part of your painting, just go up the top to edit and Undo Eraser and that will correct it for you. I've gone all the way around the rosemary, now I'm going to reduce the size of my image slightly and make my eraser a little bit larger, and then I'll remove all of the parts that I think I've missed. I'm just going to speed this up again. So we're going to image adjustments and levels again to see what I've missed. I push the middle slider across to the right and I can see all of the parts that I've missed. So I can see that I need to go back and do some more. I get my eraser and off I go again. So finally, I'm done. So what I do now to finish off, is I go into Image, Adjustments, and Levels again for the last time. This time, I type into this right box, 236 and into the middle box I type in 0.95, and I click "OK". That wipes away any little thing that I might have missed up close around the edges of the rosemary. Here I'll show you. Now, you can see that the background has been completely erased and there's nothing that my printer will print that I don't want it to. There's one last thing that I do sometimes and I'll show you. I go down the bottom here and I click on this little circle and I select Vibrance. This gives me the slider here that I can increase the vibrance of the colors if I need to. So I move this top slider to the right a little and it brightens up the rosemary slightly. Then I go ahead and save the file onto my computer, and when someone buys a print from my website or my Etsy shop, is just a case of resizing the image ready to be printed. 20. Final Thoughts: Thank you for joining me in this class. I hope you enjoyed it and learn some new skills. I also hope I've inspired you to have a go and paint your own leaves or homes. Watercolor is a difficult medium to use, but with a regular practice, your understanding of how it behaves will become clear to you and your skills will begin to improve. Please share your paintings with me and others in the class by posting some photos into the Your Project section. I'm eager to see your work.