Watercolour Still Life

How to Plan a Successful Painting!

If attempting a watercolour still life then it is important to plan your painting as much as possible prior to starting and this is so that you can get all of the details correct right at the start. Whilst many people overlook the beauty of a watercolour still life, they can draw the eye and captivate as much as any other painting. Planning, as with all paintings is paramount but you have the added advantage with a watercolour still life, in that you can consider the subject and position prior to starting.

Firstly choose your subject. What would you most like to paint? Many people draw bowls of fruit, floral displays, pitcher and bowl of water etc but you can draw anything that stimulates you the most. Painting is about inspiration and wanting to relay your own unique interpretation of any scene to others. If the image does not stimulate you, then do not attempt it. Painting is all about passion and having enthusiasm for the subject and to do justice to a watercolour still life, then you need to have those key qualities.

Following these key points to ensure that your watercolour still life is successful:

- Assuming you have made your decision as to the subject matter, spend some time carefully arranging the items so that they become aesthetically pleasing.
- Make time to notice their textures, their colours, and their form. Become absorbed in what makes them unique, whether it is a floral display or a fruit filled bowl.
- Notice the light and dark shades; change how the light falls onto your display if you are not happy with how it looks.
- Think about the colours you will use so that you can emulate those colours and textures. Consider how you will best mix the colours as opposed to painting from the tube.
- Consider the size of the paper and make sure you have several sheets available in case of mistakes.
- Almost visualise how your watercolour still life will look when it is finished.

Once you have taken all these basic steps it is time to start your painting. Some artists like to draw directly onto the paper so that they have the basics to work with, other artists like to use their drawing skills through their paintbrushes. However you like to work, paint with confidence so that your watercolour still life is a success.

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