Get ready to have some fun painting this step-by-step painting tutorial of a slice of watermelon with a wet-on-wet technique.
I’m Kata from @botanical_kata. When Peggy asked if I would share my process for this type of piece I was just thrilled. I hope you like it.
If you do give this a try and decide to share it on Instagram, tag me @botanical_kata so I can see your work and share it on my stories!
- Watercolor paper (I’m using Canson XL 300 gsm Cold Pressed Paper)
- Watercolors: Red, Dark Green, Light Green, Brown (I'm using Mijello Mission Gold: Permanent Rose, Sap Green, Hooker’s Green and Sepia)
- Watercolor brush
- Water and container
- Palette or plate for mixing
- Optional washi tap for fixing the paper and a drying tool
Step 1: Sketch your watermelon
I never begin painting without exactly knowing how the object looks like, therefore look at how a slice of watermelon looks like. I usually use the site unsplash.com for reference photos. It has a triangle shape with a curved base. If you are a beginner, draw this shape with a pencil very light. If the lines are dark, you can use a kneaded eraser to lighten them.
Step 2: Prepare your paints
We are going to use the wet-on-wet technique, which means the surface is wet where we are working and our brush is loaded with paint. It's important to work quickly because you don't want the paint to dry fully, otherwise it won't render the same effect. Therefore, we prepare our colors first. We make a mixture with lots of water from red. We are going to use this diluted red after wetting the triangular shape. We create the greens with some drops of water.
Advice: If you use the colors from pans, try spritzing them with water before painting, you can use them easier because they will be creamy
Step 3: Paint with water
Paint within the watermelon shape using only water. I've drawn the shape with a pen so you can see it.
Step 4: Add red paint
Load your brush with the prepared red and paint one side of the watermelon, leaving white space because we need some white and green there. If you're confused, just remember what a watermelon looks like ;).
Step 5: Add concentrated areas of red paint
Use a concentrated red to create darker patches. The light and dark shades of the red create the lovely texture of the melon. Enjoy seeing how the different shades blend into each other. It's always unique, as it never turns out the same. That’s why I love using the wet-on-wet technique.
Step 6: Add light green paint
While the bottom curved part of the melon is still slightly wet, paint the edge with light green paint. Can you see how lovely is it when the green spreads upwards?
Step 7: Add dark green paint
Paint the peel with the dark green.
Step 8: Time for seeds!
So far we've used the wet-on-wet technique, but here we are going to use the wet-on-dry technique because we won’t like if the dark color flows in all directions. So we will let the painting completely dry before this step.
When it is dry, we can add the seeds.
I’m using the pointy tip of my brush to paint these tiny seeds with a sepia color, you can use a smaller brush but you can draw them with a marker or with colored pencil as well.
If you are not familiar with painting smaller things, practice how to paint seeds on another sheet of paper. Just relax and paint teardrop shapes.
And here we have a yummy watermelon slice! Thanks for following along and I hope you liked it.
I’m Kata, I’m passionate about the beauty of nature. I especially love flowers and plants. I began as a self-taught artist, but am now a Natural History Illustrator with a Ph. D. degree in botany. I love learning, drawing, painting, drinking coffee, eating cookies, running and sharing my knowledge.
On my Skillshare channel, you can learn drawing and painting flowers.
Instagram: On my feed, I show flowers in shapes with step-by-step drawing tutorials, videos and botanical quizzes. Let’s be friends! ;)