Painting with watercolor: previous steps and tips for painting

paint with watercolor

Painting with watercolor is perhaps one of the first approaches to painting that people have since childhood. When it comes to practicing, many times the mistake of not preparing beforehand is made. And it is that, this way of painting requires not only getting down to work, but also knowing a little about its bases.

Would you like to have a guide with tips to go from a simple beginner to an expert? Do you want to get the best out of these paintings? Then keep reading and you will see everything you can do with them.

Previous steps before painting with watercolor

tools needed for painting

When painting with watercolor it is clear that the first thing you are going to need are the paints themselves. But there are more things to keep in mind, some obvious, some less so.

We will tell you briefly.

water-based paints

This would be the definition of watercolors. If you are a beginner, it is best to get a complete game so that you do not miss anything. However, as you progress and see progress, you yourself will realize that there are colors that you use more than others, and in the end you will end up building your own palette.

That's why you shouldn't worry because individual jars with the colors you like are also sold in specialized stores.

Watercolor brushes

You may not know this, but we'll make it clear to you right now: watercolor brushes are not "just any brush".

Of all of them we can recommend those that are made of synthetic hair (which have very good quality) as well as those made of natural hair as long as they are soft. Make sure they are round and at least a size 8 to start with (later it is possible that you will change it to adapt to your way of painting).

watercolor paper

special paper

As you know, and if we don't tell you, watercolors are wet paints, which means that if you use paper that is too thin, it will eventually go through and even break it.

Therefore, You must choose an important thickness to paint with watercolors. The bigger your work is going to be, the thicker the paper should be.

Now, we can not only talk about the thickness, but also about the texture. Basically we can find three types:

Hot pressed, which has a fine surface and It can be worth it if you want to make very detailed drawings.

Cold pressed. It is an intermediate between the previous one and the one that we will talk about next. The paper is not thin at all.

rough paper. It is the roughest, and therefore also the cheapest. But the result, when they are drawings with details, is not very good, which is why it is only recommended for some types of works.

board and tape

In order for the paper not to move, and at the same time to have a harder surface, You can choose to have a board and tape to fix the paper.

If you don't like the tape, there are other options such as rubber cement or masking fluid.


Finally, another element to take into account is a tablecloth to cover the table where you paint so that it does not stain. It will also help you to have the elements and not worry because they can leave marks.

How to paint with watercolor: the best tips and techniques

watercolor painting technique

Painting with watercolor is not difficult. In fact, many children are introduced to painting precisely with watercolors at school, and later at home. However, if you want to "make a career" of it and achieve professional results, you need to practice. This is the most important thing and the best advice we can give you.

If you dedicate some of your time to painting every day, after a few weeks or months you will see how there is an evolution of your painting. The first strokes will not look anything like the ones you do at that moment because you will have been picking up technique.

And speaking of technique, Do you know that there are several that you should know when painting with watercolor?

Techniques you should know to paint with watercolor

Here we are going to leave you a series of techniques to paint with watercolor. They are very basic but they will help you loosen up and create works in different ways.

flat gouache

The flat gouache technique, or "wash" is one of the most basic when it comes to painting with watercolor and consists of painting with a very fluid paint (somewhat liquid). This allows the brush strokes to be barely noticeable.

wet on dry

Another of the techniques, and perhaps the first one you will learn. It has two steps. On the one hand, a layer of primer is applied over the entire surface. You have to wait for it to dry and, when you do, it's time to start painting with other colors, but always using the same technique. That is, paint, wait to dry, paint, wait...

This allows you to keep the colors and do not mix by being wet between them.

wet on wet

The opposite of the previous one is this, in which we are not going to wait to paint until the other layer dries, but it is applied while wet. This will cause the colors to blend and you have a shade gradient (although blending can get another color in between).


Similar to the above, (at least in the gradient), the technique to obtain it when painting with watercolors is simple. It consists of loading the brush a lot and starting to paint on the part that we want to make it darker. Later, with plain water, you will lighten the color in such a way that several shades of the same color are achieved.

Scraped off

One of the techniques that can help you create more original results is this. It consists of applying very thin layers of paint on others that are dry, and then, with a needle or similar, stripes are made. This result can also be achieved with sandpaper.

The goal is for the painting not to appear so smooth, but as if it itself had texture. And it can be indicated, for example, for areas such as grass, curtains, etc.

Do you dare now to paint with watercolor?

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