The following is a short tutorial of a botanical painting I hope you’ll find helpful. I worked from a photo reference provided by Wendy Sinclair (photos for artists group on Facebook).
I used Strathmore 140lbs Hot Pressed paper and professional Winsor & Newton watercolours for this one. Hot pressed papers work best for me when it comes to botanical works as these do not involve large, repetitive washes of water, so it dries out quickly and is good for detailing. I used pure Sable Kolinsky brushes from Winsor & Newton for spotting and stippling while for wet on wet washes, I used a Grumbacher semi-synthetic Brush (No.10).
My Botanical Painting Steps
In the beginning, I started with a very light sketch of the flower following the reference photo. I rubbed the extra graphite from my sketch with a kneaded eraser to protect my painting from unwanted graphite marks and stains. (Photo. 1)
Tissue paper was used for lifting out areas to differentiate the leaf margins from one another and the veins. For the leaves, I used a basic thin watery layer of New Gamboge and Sap Green. Then I painted the darkest darks, with a thick creamy mixture of Raw Umber, Sap Green and Olive Green for the ones facing the light! For the cooler areas, I used Dioxazine-Purple to darken the dark shadows. (Photo. 3)
I finished the painting by completing the main branch with Sap, New Gamboge, Light Red and Raw Umber. (Photo. 4).
Hope you all will enjoy seeing my process. I would love to hear from you all!!
Cheers and Happy Painting!