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Thursday, December 6, 2012

How To Paint Snow in Watercolor Art 2

How to paint snow in watercolor.
Art 2

This is a very simple project; it is a good introduction to painting snow for young artist.

We will start with a demonstration of "staining." I call it staining because the young artist sometimes have trouble with the concept of a wash technique, so I say we are "staining the paper" when we mean a VERY LIGHT WASH.  We want the water about 99% clear so it is only tinted, check the value on a sample of paper towel before applying to the paper.

Using a 2b pencil, lightly sketch in the barn and tree. We draw the horizon about a third of the way up from the bottom. There is nothing more boring than a picture cut in half by a horizon.

We start with a wet sky, turn the paper upside down and holding it at a slight angle, (we do not want the color to contaminate the snow) and using ALMOST CLEAR water with just a very little blue we wash in the sky color starting at the horizon and going to the top edge of the picture. We will add a little lavender half way up and a little violet further up. The effect is to be a sky that is darker and looks colder. We let this dry. Young artist may need a second project to occupy themselves while this part dries.

The snow is done in a similar way. We do a VERY LIGHT WASH of almost clear water but with a little blue from the sky mixture.

After the sno dries under-paint the barn a pale red and the foreground tree a pale brown. Under-painting is flat and without detail, we use the lightest color for this step. While the barn is still wet we add a little lavender for the shadow, don't over work it, drop a little bit in and let it go. While the barn dries we will add a few sweeps of light blue color to the snow and some lavender for the shadow under the tree.

When the barn is dry we "draw" the boards and details using the very tip of the brush and a darker red. When the tree is dry we use the same technique of using the tip of the brush to draw texture and branches with a darker brown. Some blue is added to the brown to give it the darkest area. This dark tree is a contrast to the whites in the picture, so take some time with it and draw a lot of interesting branches with your brush.

The background is done when the sky and snow is dry. Lay the brush down and roll or drag it sideways across the horizon so the color is irregularly applied. While the background is still wet dapple some darker browns at the base to look like bushes and smaller trees.

A few posts will help to break up the large white snow areas if needed.

Example used during class of Stain technique (light wash) for snow. This stage shows under-painting.

How to paint snow in watercolor lesson for young artist. Example prepared before class.

(c)Adron Dozat

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