Techniques For Watercolor Painting

12 Smart Techniques For Watercolor Painting

The secret to achieving a great watercolor painting is its transparency and versatility to light which allows the viewer to marvel its hidden quality by the multi-layers of paint in one canvas. This is a glazing effect, the multi-layer of washed paints is not as hard as it may sound. And it is one of the 12 smart techniques for a watercolor painting that you will learn as we move forward, have fun and learn more!.

There are other amazingly simple yet unique watercolor techniques that painters of this medium have been practicing way back in the old times and with every generation of practices, have evolved to perfection. And before jumping into your next watercolor painting session, you will definitely check these techniques below for additional preferences

12 Smart Techniques For Watercolor Painting


Glazing on watercolor allows the medium to produce its strong character that appears to the naked eye wherein it is not in full detail from other techniques. Glazing gives marvelous effects that showcase the revolution of an empty paper to a vivid yet translucent form of every harmoniously blended pigment. This method of layering colors over each other allows for visible, sharper and fuller result resulting in a perfect blend of mixture, tone, and impact to a dashing detail art piece.  

12 Smart Technique for Watercolor Painting
Glaze Technique for Watercolor Painting – 12 Smart Technique for Watercolor Painting

There are many tools and materials you can add in watercolor painting that is also as commonly used in your house, you’ll even be surprised to know that you can add extra life to your creation.

  • Masking tape is one of these tools which saves your creation from getting leakage from extra moisture on your paper.
  • Refined salt or any salt available – this ingredient helps create that texture look, especially on rough, rocky figures.
  • Alcohol – the chemical reaction is unpredictable and soothing
  • Sharp or pointed objects such as needle – gives your creation an elevated texture

The Scrape Effect

First on the long list of 12 smart techniques for watercolor painting the scraping effect, with this you’ll be needing a sharp object for this technique, it is recommended doing the process while the pigments on the paper is still young so  as once you scrape the are with sharp objects, the paint itself will heal the hallow parts thus creating a darker, more refined look and texture that elevates from the whole artwork.

Alcohol To Paint

This must have raised some brows when heard, but surely it is part of the 12 smart techniques for watercolor painting and a guaranteed result will give you an ethereal beauty once finished. Imagine it like soap and grease, the instant chemical reaction is both soothing to the eyes as you watch pigments of colors disperse rapidly.

Wash Style Watercolor Painting

This is a common yet not every watercolor painters have notice that they are practicing this technique. It requires harmonious watercolor blending and mixing from each other allowing them to look like faded or washed colors all together.

Wet Over Wet

The Freedom technique, one of the 12 smart techniques for watercolor painting as we declare, for it allows one paint to spread freely over the other which gives an

12 Smart Technique for Watercolor Painting
Watercolor Painting – Wet on Wet Technique – 12 Smart Technique for Watercolor Painting

everlasting effect of graceful blending coming from different complex hues producing an exquisite result.

Wet To Dry

Watercolor painting is about transparency and illumination is almost the key to this medium. For this one, it is about adding an additional layer over a dried first layer showcasing its complex beauty without hiding the first wash in and the glorious strokes that were made behind it, results are such wonderful sight and yes, that is one of the 12 smart techniques for watercolor painting that is a must try for beginners with the medium.

Rough Effect

The technique which requires less to complete absence of moisture to your paintbrush which gives you a great effect of roughness as you invade the rest of your paper. Simple as it may seem but it is indeed one of the 12 smart techniques for watercolor painting and results vary from how much texture you desire. Try it on today!

Graded Watercolor Wash

For this technique, translucent colors are made with adding more moisture after a darker tone resulting in more of an overlapping layer to execute a lighter tone of your values. Most painters start with strong pigments and lesser moisture thus for the next application will be opposite and the fusion of your layers is an unpredictable yet beautiful result.

Sand Is Salt

For some painters, salt is the key to achieving a fine texture of sand to their artwork. This goes with the list of the 12 smart techniques for watercolor painting, the salt  is best to apply while the watercolor paint is still wet to the paper, which allows the salt to indulge in the extra moisture before penetrating the paper itself, for maximum effect of this

12 Smart Technique for Watercolor Painting
Watercolor Painting in Salt Technique – 12 Smart Technique for Watercolor Painting

technique, it is advisable to let it sit to the painting overnight or as the paint reach its maximum life till you remove it. The fine texture of sandy effect is admirable not just to the eye of the viewer but to feel the created texture as well.

Raise Off Paint

Imagination, practice, and experiment is the key for this technique and just like the salt technique to the watercolor paints, this lifting of watercolor paint is a must try to beginners and even professionals alike. You can be used of any plastic wrap, however, the bubble wraps are a must try, availability may differ and a crumpled plastic can even be a substitute. The process involves extra moisture and colorants to the paper and allowing the plastic of your choice to embrace the hues just before they get dry.

Protecting Barriers With Masking Tape

The watercolor painting technique that is about perseverance and endurance to all pigments and moisture surrounding the masking tape itself. You can apply the masking tape first on areas where you wanted to protect from your getting invaded by other pigments, as all the paint dries, slowly removing the tape from its place barely showing the lighter shades of your paper. The diaphanous result is breathtaking.

Foam For Paint

This method is one of the simplest forms of applying watercolor paintings with great effect especially if you are into making fluffy clouds. The sponge or any foam will be your best friend adding to your materials on hand. This gives the richness of colors as you splat to the paper and the texture of every stroke of your very own paintbrush.

Sprinkle Effect

An exquisite form of applying watercolor paints through the use of force from your fingertips. This a process using your thumb, the pointy finger and the middle finger which looks like shooting colors to the paper and snapping it directly for a sharp splash.

12 Smart Technique for Watercolor Painting
Sprinkle Effect – Watercolor Painting 12 Smart Technique for Watercolor Painting

Bleeding Colors

For some painters, bleeding is a no-no especially if the artwork needs full detail, however, the freestyle of allowing colors to bleed from each other gives a different look of elegance, some portray this as a mistake while others make this process as a beautifully crafted, intentional mistake for their desired result.

Practice For Perfection

WaterColor painting is truly a versatile medium for the ideas and possibilities of expressing your arts are endless. The rule for watercolor painting is saving the darker hues for last, for finishing and stronger details to a more vivid and transparent work of art.  

Watercolor tips and techniques vary from one single hand to a different painter. Take note that these techniques may work for one but may not be for the other. That is why watercolor painting has its own flexibility and forms on how will you adapt to their properties and composition. As we move to practice all these 12 smart techniques for watercolor painting, you will even explore new techniques sooner and gain more knowledge of the medium.

To reach a certain edge of perfection, not just on how to stroke your paint brushes, on the amount of moisture to add to a palette or the density of one tube over the other, the key technique to get familiarised with this medium is more than just patience, perseverance, hard work, and determination. You’ve got a visual inspiration to what you want to create, then grab your paintbrush and start treating them with every stroke.

Practice and get those tubes, palettes, brushes and whatever suits you best in watercolor painting. Practice and experiment on every shade, every hue, every stroke and one excellent day, you will know those colors and technique like they are part of your system like you breathe and blink with them. Being a great painter starts with painting your very own canvas, if you make mistakes, learn from them and create more, explore more, happy painting!

Hope this will help you more in your journey with watercolor painting if you have questions or you wanted to share your brilliant ideas, comment them down and we will be more than happy to learn with you, Check this other blog post from us and let’s rock watercolor painting! 



2 responses to “12 Smart Techniques For Watercolor Painting”

  1. Rona Amsler Avatar

    I just want to say I am just newbie to blogs and absolutely liked this page. Almost certainly I’m want to bookmark your blog post . You actually have good articles. Cheers for revealing your web page.

    1. Tropic Drawing Avatar
      Tropic Drawing

      Thank you so much for such encouraging words! Hoping to share more valuable contents with every artists out there!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *