Painting Romantic Trees in Watercolor

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About this Video:

I've always been inspired by the romantic seascapes and landscapes of English painters in watercolour. Of particular note would be greats like David Curtis, known for his lovingly painted scenes of fishing villages and Yorkshire area.

In this video I show you how to quickly paint trees in a soft, harmonious palette without the use of masking fluid!  


Todays Video features music by another great David.

That handsome Welsh bloke David Gray and his heart wrenching, wavering voice guides you through with the grace of his song "Say Hello Wave Goodbye" from the album White Ladder



11 x 14",  140 lb cold pressed paper, stretched and mounted ( I just use masking tape and tape it down to a support board)  

1" Fan Brush (i'm using my %100 Mongoose hair "SUPER FAN", it's a dream to work with!)

1" Wash Brush

#1 Liner  (i'm using my %100 Kolinsky Sable liner)


(click here to view or purchase these brushes)

Click > HERE to Download the sketch to print out!  (or drag and drop it or right click to save a copy to your desktop)

 Download the sketch to try it yourself!


Da Vinci Colors used:

Sap Green 

Hookers Green Dark (H.G.D) 

Ultramarine Blue

Raw Sienna


Da Vinci Mauve (or Violet) 

Burnt Umber + Violet mixed

TERMS used in this video:

"Wet into Wet"  :   liquid paint is applied to a wet surface, colours tend to mix together on wet surface , the over all effect is soft and blurry - seamless

 "Dropping in" richer colour is added but not stirred up into damp or wet colour (if it is the same color it is sometimes called "charging"



Don't over think it!

The Key to creating these trees is to keep your strokes fast and loose!

Hang on to your lights and those dry 'crunchy' edges as much as possible. The more times you press your brush down the more likely you'll accidentally go over and obliterate those little holes and highlights.

Practice your fan brush technique so it appears natural and remember to keep those bristles splayed! you want your brush to be well loaded with fluid paint. NOt dry and scratchy- we don't want tumble weeds!

Make large pools of liquid, saturated color so that you don't run out of paint mid way through. This is a fast paced technique and you need to have it all ready.

Color TIP: you can add a little Burnt Sienna if your greens are too bright

*Remember,  COOLER colours in the background & WARMER colours in the foreground.  The key to creating the look of distance is to keep your pigment thin (watered down) and bluer or cooler and "soft". Trees in foreground can be more descriptive and textured . 

Most of all, HAVE FUN!