Have you noticed that watercolor splotches are on websites, wedding invitations, party printables and more? If not, let me assure you they are incredibly popular. I had no idea until Karen at The Graphics Fairy asked me to paint some. As usual, I thought ‘no problemo’. Ha! If you really want to learn how to use watercolors, paint a bunch of splotches!
This is how I painted watercolor splotches. First, I went to Etsy and searched for them. There are a ton of awesome artists there. However getting my splotches to look like theirs took a lot of trial and error. *surprise*
Long story short, I wet the paper first then wet the paint. From there you can get creative – drop some paint onto the wet paper or use your paintbrush to give it some dimension. Or add another color and watch the magic.
When it came to painting a full page I really was stumped. I couldn’t get the colors vivid enough and maintain the watercolor effect. I was about to give up when I remembered my friend, Aunt Peaches‘ paintings. She used gouache paint (“gwash” or “goowash”) on come of her paintings, something I’d never tried.
I ran to the art store, picked up a basic set and set to
playing working. Goaches blend wonderfully with both watercolors and acrylic. They are like an opaque watercolor only you can thin them down too. They gave me the rich color I needed on a full page and kept the watercolor movement as well.
Don’t get me wrong. It took me a while of messing around with both goache and watercolors to get the right effects. Which is why I’m telling you, if you want a great beginner watercolor project, spend some time painting watercolor splotches.
In the meantime, I encourage you to head over to The Graphics Fairy and join her membership group. Not just for my splotches, no. There are a TON of awesome graphics, doodles, images, and – best of all – tutorials in the membership! It will really help you with your own art, believe me.
One last thing, most of you know by now that painting is its own form of therapy. At least for me it is. Painting watercolor splotches truly is cathartic. (just don’t judge!) The way the paint flows, the colors mesh, the movement is enthralling. I now paint splotches when I’m having a tough day as a kinda of meditation. Try it!