Difficulty: Beginners

How To Paint A Watercolour Landscape Craft Course

By Matthew Palmer

This course is the perfect introduction to watercolour painting where Matthew Palmer will teach you all you need to know from preparing your workspace and wetting your paper to mixing the colours and creating special effects.

The watercolor landscape course is run in 5 easy to follow sections

These show how to add sky and a background layer, how to paint the hills, how to paint the landcspae, fields and trees, how to paint the boat and how to add ripples refelections and finishing touches. To partcipate in the cousre you will need:- Watercolour Paper (Matthew will use 1/8 Imperial sized 11"x8", 2 Brushes 1 medium and 1 small (Matthew will be using his round brushes in szies 10 and 6), 3 Primary Colour Watercolour Paints (Matthew will be using Natural Blue, Natural Red & Natural Light Yellow), A board or tray to stick the paper too with masking tape, a craft knife, a plastic credit card, a cermaic plate for a pallet, some kitchen paper and a pot of water.

You Will Need One Of:

How to Watercolour Paint with Matthew Palmer Craft Course Kit

  • Reuseable watercolour pallet pre-loaded with Matthew Palmers artist quality watercolour paint in Natural Blue, Natural Red and Natural Light Yellow (enough to do 12-15 paintings)
  • 2 x Matthew Palmer Super Point Paint Brushes in sizes 6 & 10
  • 3 Pieces of high quality 1/8 Imperial Watercolour Paper 11"x8"

How to Watercolour Paint with Matthew Palmer Deluxe Craft Course Kit

  • 3 x 15ml Tubes of Matthew Palmers artist quality watercolour paints in Natural Blue, Natural Red and Natural Light Yellow (enough to do 40-50 paintings)
  • 3 x Matthew Palmer Super Point Paint Brushes in sizes 6, 10 & 20
  • 5 Pieces of high quality 1/8 Imperial Watercolour Paper 11"x8"
An example of the final product
An example of the final product

Video Tutorial - Step by Steps

Tutorial Step 1 - Getting ready and adding the sky and background layer

In this watercolor painting lesson, we embark on creating a scenic sunset landscape. With a simple yet effective set of materials including primary watercolor paints, brushes, palette, and watercolor paper. Ensuring the paper is securely fastened to a board, we wet the paper twice and apply a background wash using warm orange tones for the sunset sky.

Then, with a mixture of blue and red, we create a deeper purple for the top of the sky, blending it gently downwards. Using a round coin wrapped in kitchen paper, we create the sun by removing paint from the paper.

Additional horizontal lines are added to represent the lake below the sunset. After a moment to reflect and blend any hard edges, the first part of the painting is complete, ready for drying before moving on to the next section.

Tutorial Step 2 - How to paint the hills

After drying the background sky, it's common to notice the paper becoming slightly wavy. To remedy this, simply press the dry paper with your hand to flatten it out. Next, for the second section of the painting, we use masking tape to create horizontal lines for the ripples in the water. Applying the tape carefully, ensuring it's level, we're ready to paint some distant hills and add more landscape elements.

Using a mixture of blue and red, we create a background color for the hills, working with wet paint on dry paper. With a steady hand, we paint the distant hills, adding character and charm with wobbly lines. After blending and refining the hills with a damp brush and kitchen paper, we let it dry before moving on to the next stage of adding more detail to the landscape.

Tutorial Step 3 - How to paint the landscape, fields and trees

Switching to a smaller brush to focus on detailing shadows and painting the silhouettes of trees against a sunset backdrop. We demonstrate mixing a natural gray color using primary colors to avoid using pre-made grays with black pigment.

After painting the tree silhouettes, we revisit the background hills for added detail and paint various types of trees, including pine trees, using the fine point of the brush. To enhance depth, we add distant fields and smaller trees with fine lines and dots.

Tutorial Step 4 - How to add a boat

Address some seepage issues from the previous steps and prepare to paint a boat. Mixing a strong gray color, we begin painting the boat silhouette using an infinity sign technique and refining it with shadows and details. Then, we use a plastic card to create a straight edge for the boat's mast. Next, we add rigging details and reflections of the boat in the water. Finally, we add a flag or a bird silhouette to complete the scene, emphasizing the sense of realism and depth in the painting.

Tutorial Step 5 - How to add ripples, reflections and finishing touches

In the final section, we focus on the finishing touches of the painting. We add reflections in the water using horizontal lines and create depth by adding dry reflections of objects like trees and the boat.

To enhance the realism, we introduce light into the water with careful horizontal scrapes using a craft knife, creating a sparkling effect where the sun hits. After completing these steps, we remove the masking tape to reveal the clean edge of the painting, providing a polished finish.