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Painting The Night: A Night-Time Cityscape Of Tokyo

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Step 14: More Signs And Lights


On another plate or palette, squeeze out Permanent White gouache paint. This will be used for other signs and lights throughout this night-time cityscape, since gouache paint is opaque and will cover underlying layers better.

As you’ll be painting thin lines, switch to the small no. 1 round brush, then carefully add some Japanese characters to each of your building and street signs. Fake them in if necessary, using references to help. Some signs can be in English, and if you get tired of the white, you can mix watercolors with the white gouache for a different color. For example, Bill adds French Ultramarine to get an opaque blue.

The lettering effect is especially strong when added to darker areas, and keep the paint thick to make sure it shows up well. Dot in some lights as well, including streetlights, headlights, and reflections in the streets and windows. When doing the streetlights, remember that they will begin to get closer and smaller as they near the vanishing point.