Eileen McKenna Art & Design

Watercolor Art | Creative Inspiration to help you be creative on a regular basis

Tips on painting waves in watercolor

21 Comments

Watercolor Seascape Tutorial Download
Tips for painting waves in watercolor:

  • Determine what direction the light is coming from
  • Create the waves with dark and light areas.
  • Where is the detail in the painting? And therefore where is the eye drawn to? Contrasts also draw the eye.
  • Keep slivers of white (the paper) which suggests waves in the distance. Add dark areas in front of these.
  • Blotting with a tissue can create the spray of a wave
  • Dark edges makes the foam look thicker
  • Wet sand has blue in it
  • Horizontal strokes in your painting make things look flatter – use a flat brush
  • Use other colors in the sky, not just blue
  • There is a reflection in things that are wet and shiny – like wet sand
  • The position of the horizon line effects the vantage point of the painting (where you are standing on the beach)
  • The water is greener closer to the shore
  • Colors in a painting – use the same colors throughout your whole painting
  • Use white gouache to add foam areas, spray, waves in the distance, etc.

I share my process in the pdf “Waterscape Seascape Painting Tutorial,” which you can download in my Etsy shop.

Would you like to: Be creative on a regular basis and experience the joy that creativity brings? Explore mediums and subjects, in search of your thing? Learn about my new book Creative Exploration: A Six Week Process for Introducing Regular Creativity into your Life by clicking here.

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Author: Eileen McKenna {my creative resolution}

Watercolor Artist, seascape painter, collector of creative inspiration. Sign up for my newsletter!

21 thoughts on “Tips on painting waves in watercolor

  1. Great tips. Thanks for sharing, Eileen!

  2. Waves are always tricky. Good practical tips!

  3. Thanks for the tips and links. Look forward to checking out!!

  4. Thanks for sharing your learnings Eileen 👍🏼

  5. Pingback: Having the time to experiment | my creative resolution

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  7. Pingback: Capturing the Ocean in Watercolor | my creative resolution

  8. Thanks. It motivates me to start painting again

  9. I’m inspired to paint again, thanks to you!

  10. I’m inspired to paint again, thanks to you!

  11. Thanks for your help I really enjoyed your tutorial!

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