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30 Beautiful Watercolour Painting Techniques

We’ve longed to learn how to do watercolour paintings properly for years now and we’ve finally found the time to start practicing, so we’re thrilled about that! Before creating any real masterpieces, however, we decided to find as many technique guides and effect tutorials as possible and practice painting swatches. That way, we know how to make all kinds of visual textures and shapes when it comes to creating larger art pieces we really care about.

Just in case you love the idea of learning some new watercolour painting techniques too, here are 30 fantastic and excitingly different skills and strokes for you to try!

1. Wet on wet painting

Wet on wet painting

To create an impressive concentration of colour that spreads beautifully, wet your page and your brush before you pick up colour and start painting. Watercolourpainting.com reminds you that this method, which helps the colour spread through the page in that classically whimsical watercolour way, is called “a wash”.

2. Creating texture with a cut bank card edge

Creating texture with a cut bank card edge

If you’re looking to create straight, edgy, concentrated marks of colour in your page, here’s a way to do it that lets you upcycle something you’re not using anymore! Mary P. Murphy suggests cutting an old bank card in half and using that raw edge to manipulate the paint.

3. Vertical dripping technique

Vertical dripping technique

Have you always loved the artistically messy look of painted colours running together? In that case, we’d urge you to take a look at how Jesse Oleson Moore created a vertical dripping effect by painting wet horizontal lines and then tipping the page so drops run downward, from colour to colour, vertically across the page’s surface.

4. Colour concentration layering

Colour concentration layering

Layering in watercolours is how you’ll add density to the shades and created shadow. First, wash your initial shape and colour  on using the wet on wet technique we showed you above. Wait until it dries entirely and then add another layer on top with a wet brush and same colour. Look carefully at how Craftsy only layered paint in the spots they wanted to look darker, shadowed, or more concentrated.