Hey there, watercolor lover! Today, we're going to walk you through crafting a warm and welcoming sign for your home.
It's a simple project that'll brighten up your space and put a smile on anyone's face who enters. The best part? It's super easy, so let's dive right in!
*To watch the full video of the process click here
Step 1: Gather Your Supplies
- 'Welcome' page from the 'Home Signs' Art Pad by IPERARTIKA or
- Watercolor paper, (at least 240 gsm) and the Iperartika 'Welcome' Template, which you can download from the Freebies page
- Watercolors (I used pan watercolors, but you can use your preferred type. The colors I used: Ultramarine Blue, Hooker's Green, and Magenta mixed with a few drops of red).
- Watercolor brushes (I used a round #8 and a #3/0)
- Water Container
- Brush drying cloth
- Palette for mixing colors (if you don't have a palette, you can use a ceramic plate)
- Graphite pencil
- Colored pencils
- A cozy drink of your choice to sip while you paint.
*If you need a complete guide to basic watercolor painting materials along with a checklist, visit this article
Step 2: Trace your template
*For four options on how to trace your template onto watercolor paper, visit this article.
*If instead of the template, you are using your Watercolor Art Pad, remember that you can gently emphasize details like leaf veins, petals, and texture lines with a graphite pencil before you start painting.
This allows you to see them through multiple layers of watercolor, as the special ink in IPERARTIKA's Art Pads is designed not to be noticeable in the final artwork, giving the appearance that you've painted a hand-drawn picture.
Step 3: Prepare Your Workspace
Secure your watercolor paper to a sturdy surface to keep it from buckling when it gets wet.
I secure the paper to a plywood because it's lightweight and allows me to rotate it if needed so that my hand can glide comfortably while painting.
Step 4: Create Your Color Palette
Mix your watercolors to create the colors you want to use. Remember, fewer colors can make your sign look more harmonious.
Step 5: Color Sketch
I like to create a "color sketch" before starting. I use colored pencils in the same tones as the watercolors I've just prepared on the palette. This step should be quick and not focused on details. Another option is to use the watercolor paint you've already prepared.
The idea is to get an overall sense of the colors you'll be using, to determine if the composition will end up "balanced", and to decide how you'll emphasize any specific elements from the rest.
For example, if you want to make something stand out, you can paint it with a brighter, more vivid color, use a lighter shade than the surrounding colors, or even opt for a contrasting hue.
This step allows you to relax while painting, without the need to worry about selecting the perfect color at every step. Just unwind and enjoy the painting process.
Step 6: Start Painting
To start, I go for the lighter colors first. Then I layer on the darker ones. This way, we dodge those dark shades mixing into the lighter ones while painting next to it.
I personally love going for a slightly "messy" approach. It gives the paint some cool uneven textures. And I leave tiny spots unpainted to create highlights.
I use the more watery mix of each color and then drop in a touch of the same color but with more pigment. This keeps the color from being uniform, making it look like I put down multiple layers of watercolor instead of just one.
Step 7: Painting "untouched areas"
Now, onto the other elements, I go for the "untouched areas" – in other words, I paint non-adjacent parts first. When that initial layer dries, I fill in the gaps to avoid that flat, even look.
It's a personal thing; you can paint it your way. I just like to work with as few layers as possible, keeping things wet and letting watercolor do its magic.
Step 8: Painting the wooden sign
To paint the wooden sign, I take very diluted brown paint and create zigzagging lines, leaving an unpainted space in between.
Then, in subsequent layers, I paint these spaces, overlapping what has already been painted, and these different levels of layers will create an illusion of wood texture.
Step 9: Painting the areas in between
Once all the "untouched" elements are dry, we can paint the areas in between. This not only adds character to each part of the drawing but also saves us from applying many layers of watercolor to define the outlines, and it provides a three-dimensional effect as well.
Step 10: Shadows
Once the entire first layer is dry, you can apply a second layer of watercolor to emphasize shadows that may be cast by the elements in front onto those behind (simply imagine that the light in your artwork is coming from one side). You can also paint slightly darker on the side of the elements opposite to the light source to create a sense of three-dimensionality.
Step 12: Highlight with Colored Pencils
Use colored pencils to add small accents and enhance the details. Remember to work with the pencil tip well sharpened.
The idea is to create some very subtle accents here and there so that the pencil line is not noticeable.
Final step: Frame, hang, and share
And did you think it ended here? Well, it doesn't! All of IPERARTIKA's templates and Art Pads are designed to be framed or shared in the form of cards or other items.
So, it's time to frame this painting and share all the positive vibes you've put into this piece to bring a smile to everyone who enters your home!
We would love to see your final work! Share your painted template and tag us @iperartika in Facebook or Instagram. If you'd like, you can send us a photo of the painted template, and we'll feature it on the inspiration page to inspire others with your creation.
Did you enjoy this project? Share this article with a creative friend!
Do you have any questions or comments? Write to us!
Let's keep creating💫
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