Heyyyyy, guys, and welcome back to Art Lab! Today I’m going to show you three super simple and fun techniques for creating art with watercolors. These ideas are great for art-starters, warm-ups, or even as finished pieces. I used ATCs for my canvas, but you can use whatever paper you like (though watercolor paper works the best, if you have it). Also note that you can use watered-down acrylic paint instead of watercolors if you need too.

Alright, let’s do the easiest (and perhaps most fun) first. 🙂

Technique #1: Magic Islands

I discovered this one by accident and I just LOVE doing it!

1. Lay down some plastic wrap and drop some water in one corner. Dip your wet paintbrush in watercolor and mix it into the water.

art 1 (1280x887)

2. Load up your brush with the diluted paint and splatter it onto the plastic wrap.

art 2 (1280x936)

3. Lay a paper of some sort on top and smooth it out, then pick it up (obviously 😛 ).

art 4 (1280x853)

4. Wait for the paint to dry, then trace around the splotches with pen.

art 5 (1280x859)

5. And you’re done!

art 6 (1280x854)

I think this technique looks like islands, don’t you? This would be a fun way to make a map:

art 7 (1280x948)

Technique #2: Bubble Maze

This technique produces a fun and striking result. The translucence of the watercolor lets you see the colors overlap which makes a really neat effect.

1. Start by painting some dots. Overlap them and attach them to other circles so that the colors bleed into each other.

art 11 (1280x847)

2. Continue adding dots of different colors until the page is mostly filled.

art 12 (1280x884)

3. Fill in the white areas with black Sharpie or pen. And you’re done!

art 13 (1280x853)

Technique #3: Splatter Trees

This is a great way to give the impression of leaves without drawing ever single leaf.

1. Splatter different complementary colors (I used fall colors, but you can use whatever you wish) onto your paper. Try to keep it roughly in a tree shape, but don’t worry if the splatters get a little out of control.

art 8 (1280x954)

2. After the foliage is dry, use a slightly damp brush and brown paint to add in some branches and a trunk. Don’t draw all the branches the tree has, just a few poking out for effect. 😉

art 9 (1280x892)

3. Add some grass and a few dots of fall color if you’re doing an autumn tree. And you’re done!

art 10 (1280x853)

And there you go! Three fun and simple ways to make some watercolor art.

art 14 (1280x853)

Which technique was your favorite? If you make art inspired by this post, we’d love to see it! Click here to learn how to help us fill our art gallery!

***Allison***

Advertisements

Episode 33

Hello everyone! Hannah here, I am so excited to say that I have joined The Art Lab! I am looking forward to creating artwork and posts with this beautiful group of girls! Today I wanted to share some fun ideas of mine for getting creative with unique and atypical materials that you might just have at home!

Continue reading

Episode 32

Hi guys!

The name’s Buttercup ❤

This is my first go round with posting on here but I hope you’ll see me a whole lot more!

Technique: How to create hair using colored pencils.

~To achieve the same color as me, you’ll need:

  • A dark reddish brown
  • Medium brown
  • Dark brown
  • Darker brown
  • Black
  • White (for highlighting)

Any brand will work, as I’m working with Crayola and some other colored pencils I forgot the name of…

(Sorry in advance, my pictures are kinda… blue-ish?)

First you want to sketch the outline of the hair, as I’ve done here. It gives you a good idea of how full and what particular style you want, etc.

Next you want to start shading with your reddish brown. Careful not to color the full shaft of hair.

Then shade with the medium brown. Covering most but not all of the reddish brown.

Add the dark brown. Again, covering most of the medium brown but not all.

Yep, then add the darker brown. Like before covering most but not all of the previous color.

Lastly, use the black to add the shadows, like I’ve done here.

Now that you’ve colored the hair- where the white space is, if yours looks like mine, color lightly with the reddish brown making the spot a little samaller.

Once you’re done, color with the white on top.

Viola! You’ve just created superb hair!

Bravo, you deserve a pat on the back and GIVE THAT AWESOME PERSON A COOKIE!


…Did you have fun?

***Buttercup***

Episode 31

erase artist's block

WOOHOO Art Lab is back! I’m so excited to show you guys the post for today: 20 simple art prompts to help you erase artist’s block. 😀

Alright. So I’m going to give you the art prompts, explain each one a bit, and show you some of the art I’ve made using the prompts. Quite a few of these work especially well for ATCs, but you can use your sketchbook, a canvas, whatever! Ready?

Go.

  1. Draw a colorful black and white animal. Because art is great for showing things you never see. Paint a colorful panda, zebra, penguin… skunk. Have fun. I made this ATC ages ago…DSCN8577
  2. Draw your favorite music. Put on your playlist and draw what you hear. What color is the song? Blue, yellow, black, pink? Is it a soft, wavy line or an angry spiky one? Draw three or five of your favorite songs stacked on top of each other and frame it.
  3. Paint a pretty background and write a word/quote on top. Super simple, super pretty. I like to use watercolor and black or white gel pen. Look up pretty fonts on Pinterest if you like. art 4
  4. Use a white gel pen to doodle on black paper. This is SO satisfying and fun! I did another (rather short) Art Lab post about it here.
  5. Draw a huge picture of a tiny thing, and vice versa. A crumb, a bug, a part of your fingerprint… fill the whole page and draw in lots of detail. On the other hand, how small can you draw an elephant that still looks like an elephant? I know cats aren’t exactly huge, but I did draw them tiny. art 5
  6. Pick three markers without looking and only use those for a drawing. If you watch art videos on YouTube, you may know this as the Three Marker Challenge. 🙂 Somehow only having limited colors seems to kickstarts your creativity.
  7. Draw a close-up of a tiny detail of something. The stitching on your jeans, your dog’s nose, the center of a flower… I’ll bet a collage of several close-ups would look really neat! Like those mystery pictures in the backs of magazines. It’s also fun to draw several close-up views of one object: your cat’s eye, paw, nose, ear, whiskers, and put them together.
  8. Paint something by not painting. Negative space is fun to play with. I think watercolor is especially neat for this technique. It works well to paint the whole page with water except the silhouette of what you’re drawing, then swirl on some paint. What do you know, another cat.art 3
  9. Draw your dream house and decorate it. Or your dream bedroom, or craft studio, or kitchen. Who knows, this drawing might come in handy when you get a chance to build it!
  10. Close your eyes and scribble. Turn it into a drawing. This is a super fun and simple prompt, which I also made a post about here.
  11. Draw a silhouette with a galaxy behind it. Actually draw the galaxy first, but you know. And guess what? I ALSO made posts about how to draw galaxies! What do you know. There’s one here and one here. Once you’ve made the galaxy, draw a silhouette of a wolf, a person, a tree – the possibilities are endless (maybe)! Or you could draw a galaxy silhouette.art 8
  12. Draw on something unusual. A leaf, a crumpled brown paper bag, yesterday’s newspaper, an old book page, etc.
  13. Use words instead of lines to draw. Draw yourself a story. Instead of drawing lines, write tiny words. Instead of coloring something in, color it in with different colors of words.
  14. Draw a picture of what nothing would look like if it was something. I… don’t even know if this is possible. If you do it, I WANT TO SEE IT!
  15. Draw what smiling and crying feels like. Don’t actually draw someone smiling or crying. Use colors and lines (and objects besides people or facial features) to convey the feeling.
  16. Fill up a page with different versions of the same thing. Draw a hedgehog twenty different ways. Draw ten different cats. Fifteen different trees. It’s fun. CPC 3 (1038x1280)
  17. Draw with a non-art supply. Try using coffee, makeup, dirt, nail polish, smashed berries, food coloring, or whatever else you can find.
  18. Cover a page in lines, circles, or patterns, and watercolor on top. Another super simple but super pretty prompt! Just keep in mind that if you draw with a pen, you’ll need to let the ink dry before watercoloring over it. art 2
  19. Paint yourself without using lines – only colors that describe you. Go for sort of an impressionistic style here I guess. Use blotches of color instead of smooth lines, just for interesting.
  20. Fill a page with watercolor swatches and doodle on top. SO FUN! I got this idea from Pinterest here. And this is mine:

art 1

That was fun! I hope these ideas inspired you, dears. Which one was your favorite? Would you like to see more art prompt posts like this?

If you drew something inspired by these prompts, I’d love to see it! Click here to see how to send in a picture of your art and help us fill our gallery over at the Art Lab blog.

Also, here’s an image especially made for pinning if you want to save this to Pinterest for future reference. 😉

art block pin

Thanks for reading, and have fun! 😀

***Allison***

Episode 30

Halloo, guys! I’m excited to present a simple tutorial for drawing faces! 😀 I’ve heard a lot of you say “I CANNOT draw people” or “faces are SO hard,” and you know what? I kinda agree. People can be really hard to draw. But you can do it! Today I’m going to show you an easy way to draw a face with just a pencil and paper, and then I’ll show you some different combinations you can use to get all sorts of interesting characters. 🙂

So. To begin, here’s how to draw an average, boring face without looking off a photo of a person. XD (I – and probably you too – can draw a better face when looking off of a picture, but sometimes you just want to make up something, right?)

Ahem.

Technique: Drawing Faces

Step One:

Sketch out an upside-down egg shape for the face and two short curved lines below for a neck. A grid like this is nice if you need help with the placement of the features (like I do). Just draw a vertical line down the middle of the face and a horizontal one between a half and a third down the face. You can see that my sketch is far from perfect, but that’s okay. We’ll touch it up as we go.

face 1 (853x1280)

Step Two:

Using the grid, draw two oval or almond-shaped eyes. (You can add more grid lines if you like, but you don’t need to.) Eyes are usually smaller than you think, at least in my case. I drew these a bit too big. Getting them symmetrical is hard, but you know what? In reality, no one’s eyes are perfectly symmetrical – look in the mirror!

face 2 (953x1280)

 

Step Three:

One common mistake made when drawing eyes is to draw the iris as a whole circle. Unless you are surprised or unusually pop-eyed, you won’t be able to see the whole iris. So make your circle go off the eyeball, like this:

face 3 (1280x853)

Step Four:

Draw a tiny circle towards one side for the highlight, and a bigger, filled-in circle (or dot) for the pupil. Also draw a curved line above and below each eye for the eyelids.

face 4 (1280x853)

Step Five:

Draw the eyelashes. This can be pretty tricky, and I think I drew too many eyelashes here. From far away, you can only see a few individual spikes of eyelashes, not a whole fringe. (Again, look in the mirror if you need help.)

face 5 (1280x853)

Step Six:

Heh heh, this would usually be where you color in the irises, but I kind of forgot about it until step ten. XD You can skip to there now if you’d like or just do it later.

Anyway, now we need the nose. Draw two curved lines (kind of like you did with the neck) for the bridge of the nose, and two parentheses-like curved lines below it. How far apart you make them determines how big the nose is, as well as how far down on the face you put them.

face 6 (1280x853)

Step Seven:

Curve your parentheses around a bit more to look like “C’s” facing each other. Then connect the bottoms with a wide curve or “U.”

face 7 (1280x853)

Step Eight:

For the top of the lips, make a flattened “M” shape, which I think looks kind of like a flying bird. 🙂

face 8 (1280x1178)

Step Nine:

Connect the two ends of the “M” with a long curve. You can make it almost flat or very arched depending on how full you want the lips to be. Draw a line in the middle that echoes the curves of the top lip line.

face 9 (1280x853)

Step Ten:

Now I remembered to color in the eyes. XD A simple way to do this is to color a dark line around the outside of the iris and fill it in with lighter pencil. Make sure to darken especially the top of the iris to make it look more realistic.

face 11 (1280x853)

Step Eleven:

Now for the hair, which I am pretty terrible at. XD Oh well, you can tell it’s hair at least.

Using the face shape sketch you did at the very beginning, curve the hair around the head like so. (I decided to make the head a little shorter than I had originally sketched.) For this hairstyle, I kind of drew two elongated teardrop or comma shapes that meet at the middle line of the face grid.

Also now is the time to define the face shape at the jaw and chin. You kind of just have to play around with this part and experiment. A more round, curved jawline will look like a younger face, and a sharper, more angular jawline will look older or more masculine.

face 12 (1195x1280)

Step Twelve:

Start shading the hair. WAIT, DON’T PANIC BECAUSE I SAID SHADING. This is very simple. Draw darker, closer together lines beside the neck and at the top of the head, and lighter, farther apart lines for the rest of the hair. Don’t draw many lines at all at the top sides of the head, which will make the hair look more shiny and highlighted. Leave a little gap where the two sides of the hair meet for a part. Or just look at the picture and figure it out for yourself. XD

face 14 (853x1280)

Step Thirteen:

Finish shading the hair. Also *facepalm* I almost forgot the eyebrows. XD Oh well, you can add those sooner or later, it doesn’t really matter. But you should add them or the face will look kind of weird and blank. Eyebrows are simple: just draw a bunch or really short, slightly curved lines. Or you can draw just a single curved line for an even simpler, less realistic version.

Lastly, erase any grid lines and smudges, add shading around the face and under the neck if you want to (you don’t have to), and you’re done! Ta-da!

To tell the truth, this isn’t my best portrait. The face is too round, the eyes are too big… but that’s alright. This is what you have to do – if it doesn’t turn out good the first time, do it a second… and a third, and a fourth. 🙂

face 16 (916x1280)

Now since you know how to put everything together, here are some ways to change up the facial features. It’s so fun to try different combinations!

Here’s another Art Lab post I did on how to draw eyes: Episode 23.

faces 1 (1280x1277)faces 2 (1280x853)faces 3 (1280x1087)faces 4 (1280x1048)faces 5 (1280x1033)

faces 6 (909x1280)

Have fun mixing and matching! Also before you go, I wanted to show you a colored pencil face drawing I did off of different pictures. You can tell I do a lot better when I look off of something. XD

Which little cutie is your favorite?

girls drawing (1024x377).jpg

Well, I hope you found this tutorial helpful! Would you like me to do another face tutorial, like maybe how to do colored pencil portraits or profile portraits or an easier or harder version? What do you want to learn how to draw? Maybe I can do the next Art Lab from one of your suggestions!

Thanks for reading, dears, and have fun drawing!

***Allison***