Watercolor doesn’t have to be serious and technical all the time, have fun experimenting with watercolor , Spirograph and zentangle designs on ARTiful, painting demos.
You might also like: Fun summer art activity: Watercolor Ombre Postcards
Here are some techniques you can try with watercolor, mixed media and spirograph.
Here are the steps you can take to paint this postcard with Spirograph visual texture
Start by taping the postcard onto a small board with masking tape so it will be easier to work and you will get cleaner sides when the painting is done.
Paint the background first, with a wet in wet technique, letting the colors blend on the paper. You can use a wet sponge on the side of your painting to clean and dry your brush in between colors.
I used Cobalt Blue, Cadmium Lemon Yellow Sap green and a bit of burnt sienna. You can mix the colors wet into wet on your paper
If you want to to add visual texture and complexity to the background, drip alcohol onto the watercolor wash.
Wait for the wash to dry.
Next step is the fun part with an Spirograph
Add a few patterns, here I used with the green pen that comes with the set and try a few ones with a white gel pen, they don’t show very much.
Then draw the outline of a tree with a pencil and paint in white all the negative space using white Copic White ink and a brush.
All the negative space has been painted in white, some of the Spirograph design are still visible through the paint, which I find is a nice effect. You could also use acrylic paint to paint the negative space. If you want to, you can add a bit of color to the background.
Here I did mix a very light yellow-green wash from Sap green and Cadmium Yellow and am painting on top of the Copic white. I thought copic white was waterproof but it actually isn’t so I am careful not to disrupt the under layer of white when painting over with the green wash.
I also want to unify a bit the colors of the tree, so I am glazing it with a mix of Burnt Sienna and Sap Green.
When everything has dried, add another layer to the design and start drawing patterns with a sharpie.
You could look at zentangles designs to find inspirations for your pattern.
The finished postcard
Drawing mandala like designs to make your own postcard
Here is the second postcard, made using the same techniques, except watercolor has been mixed with with acetone and the design is a bit more simple.
You can dilute a watercolor wash in alcohol or acetone instead of water, they will have a similar effect but I find that the smell of acetone is stronger and that it also tends to increase pigments granulation. You need to dilute the paint in a bit of water before adding the acetone as acetone by itself won’t dilute the paint.
Start by painting a wash with a few colors, acetone is giving a bit more body to watercolors than would water by itself so the paint seem to move more slowly on the paper.
Dripping acetone on the wet wash seem to have a similar effect from what you could obtain with alcohol, only a bit more subtle.
When everything is dry, draw a few patterns using your Spirograph set, with a pencil this time, you can add a few tiny designs like here I added flowers with my white gel pen.
Start drawing your design with a fine point sharpie.
This time I just go for a simple circular design.
Work in concentric circles. When you are done,you can adjust the colors if you want to. Here I wanted a bit more blue so I am painting a wash of blue on top of the designs.
I did add a Cobalt blue wash in some circles only to add variety.
The finished postcard.