Watercolor Techniques - Tropical Leaf | Gulnara M | Skillshare

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Watercolor Techniques - Tropical Leaf

teacher avatar Gulnara M, Artist/Etsy Shop Owner

Watch this class and thousands more

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

Watch this class and thousands more

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

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Let's sketch our Tropical Leaf


    • 3.

      Creating a beautiful background


    • 4.

      Painting our Tropical Leaf


    • 5.

      Final Details


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About This Class

In this class I will teach you how to paint a Tropical leaf - Monstera - with watercolors using only 3 colors.

Tools you will need for this class: 

Note - These are the tools that I used to create this class, you do not have to get the same brand paper or watercolors. 

  • Pencil and eraser
  • Watercolor Paper - hot pressed Arches paper block
  • Watercolors -  Sennelier 341, 501 and 619
  • Palette to mix watercolors
  • Brushes - square flat 3/4", round brush size 16 and round brush size 6
  • Colored Pencils - prismacolor 1006 and 905
  • Washi tape
  • Paper towels
  • Glass with water

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Gulnara M

Artist/Etsy Shop Owner


My name is Gulnara and I am an artist based in Los Angeles, California. I have been drawing since before I could write and art has always played a huge part in my life. I always experiment with techniques and different mediums. My favorite mediums are watercolors, oil paints, ink and color pencils. I love to create illustrations that inspire and bring smiles.

I hope you enjoy my classes ;)

See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Intro: Hi. My name is Gulnara and I'm an artist based in Los Angeles, California and I also teach here on skill share You can find the classes that I teach here on my skill share profile. I also opposed time lapse and progress videos of my painting process on my YouTube channel . Some of these illustrations are selling my shop in this class of old. Teach you hard to paint. A tropical leave was watercolors using only state colors. You can find the list of supplies you will need in the description of this class. Thank you so much for taking this class and let's get started. 2. Let's sketch our Tropical Leaf: Let's begin. When I plan to paint the whole area of the canvas, I prefer to block out a small frame with a Washington. A friend gives him more finished look. And to be honest, everything looks better in a free. Also, if you're not using a block of paper where every sheet of papers connected, covering edges with the washing tape will allow you to clip paper to your sketchbook. We will be using a lot of water in this class. And because of that, that people can warp unless you secure it to something. Some people like to attach the paper directly to the table with the tape. I don't like to do that for a few reasons. Number one. I'm a messy person, and if I spill something, I can quickly lift the paper and safer, precious baby. And number two. I like to turn my paper around where I need to reach different areas of the painting. There is no need to suffer and twist your neck and 10. Okay, let's get to sketch him. I'm using this picture off Unsterile E as a reference, and you will notice that a shape of the heart so first thing I'm drawing is a big heart. Very lightly was my pencil. You can see it well, so I skip to the part of the video where outlined the sketch. Once I drove the initial shape, I started working on the details. We don't need to make it identical to the phone, not only using it as a reference, so you can see it doesn't match my sketch. What I like about amongst era leave are those holes in the leaves and the top point. And this is what I focus on. Also, do not forget to sketch the veins of the leaves. Make sure they're white enough tropical leaves have pretty big veins, and we will be painting around. - Okay , the sketches done now on to the fun part. 3. Creating a beautiful background: in this video, we will be working on the background of the painting. Since this is an abstract background, we can have lots of fun. We will be using wet on wet technique. So first I covered the paper was water, but I stayed away from the league. We don't want the pink paint a blade into the lead. I'm using 3/4 inch square flat brush for this. For the background, I'm going to use only one color bright red number 619 bites and Leah, as which two sides 16 round brush so that I could easily work around the league with water colors. We always want to start like and build up the value in saturation. Since this is a big piece of paper and prefer to work in sections for the first layer of color, I use a liberal amount of water to dilute the pigment and make it spread more easily. - When I started adding the pattern straw background, I switched to a smaller, round brush size six. It gives you more control. As you can see, I'm still focusing on Lee on the area around the league. I will work on the holes inside the lead I love working was wet on wet kink because you get very exciting and unpredicted results. We can control pigment as much, and you have to trust the paper and water. I find it very relaxing. So give yourself the permission to play here and explore one story. Done was the background we can paint. The holes in the league was the same color. I didn't cover them with the water first. Instead, I used highly delegated red color. - Before we can start working on the lead, we need to let this layer to dry completely. So it's good time to make some coffee or tea and take a break. 4. Painting our Tropical Leaf: Now that our background is completely dry, we can start working on the lead without worrying that green or red will bleed into each other. For the leave, I'm mixing two colors lemon yellow number 501 and turquoise number C 41. Whenever we make scholars, we always want to test them first before you put them on our paper. As you can see, I made a swatch of this colors on a separate piece of paper to make sure that our pink and turquoise will work well together. When working was the leave, we will use to techniques wet on wet and drying. We start with the wedding. Let first we started covering leave not was the word, but it was a very deluded mixture of turquoise and yellow. Also, go ahead and cover those veins. We don't we don't want them to be white, but instead allied shade of toward points. I picked this color combination because I think it's fun in different, but he can pick any color combinations. Just try them first to make sure they work together. You will notice that even was the first layer we don't know want to paint the leaf in the uniforms sheet. We want very ancient in saturation, so I let the edges be darker and midsections of each section of the leave lighter. By adding more war again enough, we got to take your time and enjoy the process. Now that the first layer is done, we can start working, making our leave more vibrant. People use wet on dry ticking. We need to make sure the first layer is dry because we don't know want the pain to believe into the veins We now will be Painting around them was watercolorist. You can only make things darker, but he can make them later unless you remove the pain. It was water, so now we will work one small section of the time, taking our time around veins and slowly moving around the holy. It's a good time to talk about why I'm adding yellow in this mixture. We could have easily painted. It simply was two colors. Editor would look great, too, but by adding yellow, we're adding more depths to the turquoise. Especially in this stage, we can add more yellow in some parts of the leave and in other parts of the leave at moratoria Coy's. This will make our relief move. I burn to give the dimension to the league. We also need to continue varying the saturation of the pain. Think well would light him this leak. The edge is usually a darker and the bends of the sections of the leaf I usually brighter. So keeping that in mind very the amount of water you add to your mixture. You can use your reference picture and see how light bounces off the leave, or you can let your imagination playful. Also, I apologize for my had showing up in the frame periodically, but even was consequences. I need to be close to the papers to see what I'm doing. - Yeah , - yeah . - So before we can move to the next and final section of this class, make sure this layer is completely dry. You know that 5. Final Details: Yeah, almost at the finish line. First thing, Let's remove the Washington. Oh, this is such a satisfying moment. Now I'm going to add some details with colored pencils. This state is completely optional. I'm using Prisma Color Parrot green and acquire memory. As always, test them on a piece of paper before you start using them for your painting. I like to have defined edges to my illustrations, and for this leave specifically, I decided to outline. It was colored pencil when they were working with colored pencils. Also start like you can always build up. These pencil specifically are soft cool, so there are very rich in color and spread easily. - Besides outlining the edges, I'm also shading some areas of the leave by adding a little bit of color here and there to make some areas darker. Yeah, also, you will notice I'm using a piece of paper under my hand. It's a good practice because you can small inched the areas with your hand and dragged the paint around. We don't want that and that's it. Our tropical leaf is complete. Thank you so much for taking my class. Please share your project and I can't wait to see what you create