Loose Watercolor Landscape Video Demonstration

Join me in this exciting watercolor landscape video demonstration as I bring to life a photo reference from Vinalhaven, Maine through my expressive artistic style.

Although it may seem like I’m carelessly slinging paint, there’s actually a thoughtful application of traditional techniques behind it. Before I delve into the creative process, let me share with you some guidelines that I consider before I begin working with watercolors.

Painting loose watercolor landscapes requires a combination of technique and mindset.

Here are some secrets to achieving a loose and expressive style:

  • Simplify the scene: Focus on capturing the essence of the landscape rather than getting caught up in every intricate detail. Simplify the shapes, omit unnecessary elements, and emphasize the main features that convey the character of the scene.
  • Use larger brushes: Opt for larger brushes to encourage broader strokes and a looser application of paint. This allows for more spontaneous and gestural marks, giving your landscape a sense of energy and movement.
  • Embrace wet-on-wet technique: Wet-on-wet painting involves applying paint onto wet paper, allowing the colors to blend and flow naturally. This technique creates soft and diffused edges, adding a sense of atmosphere and spontaneity to your landscape.
  • Limit your palette: Instead of using every color in your collection, limit your palette to a few harmonious colors. This helps create a unified and cohesive painting while simplifying your decision-making process.
  • Play with negative space: Leave areas of the paper untouched or use washes of light color to create negative space within your composition. This allows the viewer’s eye to fill in the gaps and adds a sense of depth and airiness to your painting.
  • Use expressive brushwork: Experiment with different brushstrokes and mark-making techniques. Vary the pressure, direction, and speed of your brush to create dynamic and expressive lines, shapes, and textures in your landscape.
  • Let go of perfection: Embrace imperfections and happy accidents. Allow the paint to flow and interact with the water and paper, embracing the unpredictable nature of watercolors. Don’t be afraid to let the paint bleed, blend, and create its own magic.

Remember, painting loosely is about capturing the essence and mood of the landscape rather than creating a detailed representation. Practice, experiment, and develop your own unique style to bring a sense of freedom and expression to your watercolor landscapes.

Here are some tips to help you paint more abstractly

  • Observing the subject: Taking the time to closely observe the scene
  • Extracting interesting details and features for painting, make some connections
  • Composition: Arranging the larger shapes to create a captivating composition
  • Finding the right balance of information for the scene
  • Exploring the interplay between representational and abstract qualities
  • Adding necessary details while minimizing clutter

These are just a few ideas that guide my approach.  Below, you’ll also find the finished artwork alongside the photo reference that served as inspiration for the landscape.

Inspiration Image
Inspiration Image
Loose Watercolor Landscape Video Demonstration
Finished Art