• Cat Regi

How to paint 5 types of easy watercolour flower

I love gardening, plants and flowers and therefore my paintings contain actual plants, real flowers, and identifiable leaves alongside a few made up ones just because making up plants is fun 😉. Here are my top five easy flowers to try when you're just getting started, and a description of how I started to paint them. Remember: it doesn't matter if they're perfect, the style described below is loose and messy and the more times you try each one the more you'll discover what works for you. Just go for it. #antiperfection 😉

Materials: paintbrush, whatever paints you have available (I use watercolours), waterproof fineliners, paper (watercolour if possible, but anything will work to have a play)


1) Lavender - I usually start with a nice big pale side print with my brush, then when dry add a layer of slightly less watery paint, but still fairly transparent. Add layers as it dries until you get the depth of colour that you want. When totally dry you can use a waterproof fineliner to add small ink circles to create the head of the lavender and a fine dusty green stem with small leaves on.

2) Foxgloves - Choose two colours that complement each other. I love a purple and red, or red and pink. Start with a large oval side print of a brush in the arching shape that foxglove flowers lean across the flowerbed or hedgerow. Before the paint is dry drop a tiny amount of a more intense colour at the side that will eventually touch the stem. This will spread through the larger wet surface to create a nice effect. Once dry you can add a smaller brush print into the centre if your gradient isn't as strong as you'd like. When dry add a fine green stem and some long leaves (I always look up images of the the plant before I paint for a quick reminder before I start). When totally dry use a waterproof fineliner to add the flower shape over the colour.

3) Sunflowers - Start with a large bright yellow circle and while wet drop just a tiny bit of orange into the middle. Dab with paper towel and start again with a thin layer of yellow if it all goes wrong, but personally I've seen sunflowers all colours from yellow to orange to dark red and they're all beautiful so go with whatever colours look good to you! Once dry add a nice big dark brown circle in the middle and when that's dry you can add a bit of texture with darker paint dots for seeds or use the waterproof fineliner to draw petals and seeds at the same time. A nice long stem and big leaves in a classic leaf shape complete the plant. Joy. 🌻

4) Large daisy - Use very pale pink or any colour you like, and the side of a long thin brush to create petal shapes around where the yellow centre will go, if you find it hard to visualise then you can draw a very faint small circle the size of the centre of your daisy to put the petals around. I often use watercolour pencils for this as then the colour washes of as I paint and I quite like the scribbly lines that are left at the end. Be aware, normal lead pencil will not rub out once you've painted. The other way to do petals which gives a lovely shape is to use a fine brush and paint in a single stroke, with gentle then harder then very gentle pressure to paint each petal. Once dry pop the yellow centre in and finalise the details. If you want a white daisy rather than a coloured one then I will write a post on beginners flowers using masking fluid at some point. Please sign up to the newsletter (the pop up appears when you first arrive at the homepage) and you'll see it as soon as it is created!

Rudbeckia - Using whatever petal form you preferred for the daisy above, create a fan of petals pointing downwards and slightly to the side (a good one to look at images of before you start!). Whilst wet add a little pink or orange to the centre. When these are dry you can add a lovely big black/brown centre up on top. A long stem leaning over and leaves if you want to add foliage.

You can expand on the basic shapes above to do snowdrops, tulips, echinacea, forget-me-nots and all sorts of other variations on the form and some. I'd love you to tag me at @hellobadibidu if you give it a try, you never know you might encourage someone else to give it a try too!

Please have fun and play with colours and shapes, don't worry if it's exactly how you pictured it when you started!

There are sooo many places to go from here but these are a few simple ideas to get started in painting and watercolour flowers.

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