Watercolour Tutorials

Hot Sea Cave Painting


I used Arches paper which is my usual choice. I use NOT in a fairly light quality as the heavier papers can act like a sponge causing paint to blur unexpectedly.

I also use a hairdryer to control areas that seem to be at a good stage for no further backruns or blooms.

In this painting I used Winsor and Newton Professional quality paints.

Phthalo Blue
Cobalt Turquoise
White gouache
Burnt Sienna
Permanent Rose
Manganese Blue
Quinacridone Gold
Brusho   dried inks  Light Brown mixed with Purple in water

A drawing pen
A hake brush
A size 4 Watercolour Brush with a good point
A plant mister with a very fine spray

  1. A very loose pencil sketch and some Cobalt Turquoise with white gouache to a creamy consistency was applied to spray damped paper and smoothed with a hake brush so it dried flat. Further damping and washed of Aureolin and Sienna streaked to show the sedmentary rocks. Aureolin ran into the sky to create vegetation.1
  2. Damp paper and Pthalo blue is dropped into the water area- I am tipping the board to get it to run  and blend. Don’t use any more white gouache and keep your other colours away from it as it will make them go opaque!P1170857
  3. Cleaning up the excess paint on the tape edgesP1170858
  4. Pen and ink onto damp paper produces blurred and feathered lines. .inky
  5. Some Quinacridone gold is added here and there at the base of the rocksP1170861
  6. Create areas of deep shadow in the cave with the ink on the brush and some more Manganese blue which is a good cold colour. You want it to look as if the sea on the cave floor is throwing colour onto the cave walls.7
  7. A sharp blade is used to scratch and damage the surface of the bone dry paper to create white highlights. This is called scratching out and is irreversible. P1170870
  8. Finished painting. It is of Menorca by the way. Shadows were added to the base of the cliffs and dragged down through the sea colour. Don’t you just love the blues! caveAll Rights Reserved Veronica Aldous 2016