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View Of A Window: Buckets Of Watercolor Flowers

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Step 1: Storytelling Via Sketching


Ever wanted to tell a story through painting scenery? Bill shows how to do so in this tutorial featuring a European-style window and a bucketload of watercolor flowers.

To start, spray your paints with clean water to make them easier to work with later. Then, use artist’s tape to tape a border around the edge of your painting. You can tape off a little towards the side to make it narrower, and to create a strip of space to test colors on. Bill is using stretched paper here, where “stretching” is a technique to help prevent the paper from warping while painting on it.

When you’ve finished preparing, you can focus on your composition. Plan out the textures you’ll need, and what colors you could layer to make the most out of your painting. Start sketching the flowery scene as well, remembering not to center any of the main objects. You can also position each object by measuring the relative distance between each major point, such as making the windowsill line up with the lip of the flower trough.

While you sketch, remember that you’re just laying down some guidelines, so don’t draw every individual flower or detail. You can draw a quick outline or impression instead, and fill in the remaining details with paint. Don’t forget to add a little perspective to the stairs and ground, and to the opening of the window.

Below is a close-up of Bill’s sketch: