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Green Mums, watercolor flower painting with zentangles

I sometimes like to revisit a subject I already painted and work on it with a different medium. This time I did a different version of a flower painting I had done a few years ago with acrylics and pastels, I wanted a softer version of the flowers and perhaps adding some designs in the background.

Green Chrysantemums , mixed media on canvas, 24 x 24 inches

Green Mums,
Acrylic and mixed media- previous version
sold: click here to buy prints

Click here to See a step by step demo for this painting.green mums watercolor and mixed media on paper with zentangles

Green Mums, Available- Click here to buy

Here is a step by step tutorial showing the steps I took to paint this Watercolor and mixed media painting.
Material list:

  • Hot press Arches paper 140 lb, stretched on a foam board
  • Watercolor paints: Cadmium Lemon Yellow, Permanent Red, Burnt Sienna, Purple, Ultramarine Blue, Cobalt Blue, Payne’s grey.
  • Brushes
  • Alcohol
  • Bright blue colored pencil

background and rough outline

I started by a rough outline of the flowers and did prepare a mix for the background with Lemon yellow and Ultramarine blue and Permanent Red in a tiny bit of water. I then added alcohol instead of water to dilute this wash.

textures when painting with alcoholPainting with alcohol instead of water will make the wash dry faster and form interesting textures.

experimenting with granulating medium

I also want to experiment with granulating medium and am adding it to the paint I will use for the stems. It also adds a nice textural effect.

IMG_6038 (2)

Here I painted all the stems.

painting the background flowers wet into wet

Then I start working on the background flowers, painting them wet into wet so the edges are not too defined. I want only the two front flowers to have more defined edges.

painting wet into wet

I am also painting the flower on the upper left side, using techniques of wet into wet painting and glazing.

background flowers are painted

Here the background flowers are painted and I did lay a very light green wash on the three flowers left.

painting the flowers with more defined shapes

When painting the two main flowers, I am trying to describe more detailed shapes.

wet on dry, wet on wet and glazing

I am painting the flowers, using techniques of painting wet into wet, wet on dry and glazing.

neutralizing the background

Then I want to tone down a bit the yellow of the background and have it a bit more greyish. So I am going to paint another wash diluted in alcohol, using the same mix of yellow, ultramarine blue and permanent red, but this time I am using more blue and red.

painting the backgroundAdding another layer to the background.


I want to add a few specks of Cobalt blue.

splashing cobalt blue using a dropperSo I am splashing a mix of Cobalt blue in water, using a dropper.

spraying with a spray bottle

Then I am spraying a bit of water in some areas, using a spray bottle.

moving the paint with fingers

I find it fun to move the paint with my fingers sometimes 🙂

drawing a pencil lime with pencils and a ruler

I am then drawing a few pencil lines to delimitate an area where I want to add a few zentangles.

drawing with colored pencils

Then I am starting to draw designs using a bright blue colored pencil.

flower designs

I am drawing simple Flower designs.


green mums watercolor and mixed media on paper with zentangles

The finished painting: Green Mums


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Lynda Murtha

    I just love following your work. I love the little tips you give along the way and the pictures you take of your work are great. Thank you!

    • Thanks Lynda, This is very nice of you to take the time to make this nice comment 🙂

  • Jeanine

    You’re so great to take the time to take photos at each step of your process and share your great ideas with us all. It must be so time consuming. I don’t know how you do it all.
    I love both of these pieces of art. They have a nice feel to them. Quick question on the mums you painted in this most recent work. Did you paint them from a reference photo? Or from live flowers? The reason I ask is due to the wonderful details of the petals, indicating the depth with the darker paint etc. I love the way you made them look. I find this particular type of painting diffiuclt to achieve without making it look like just a mess without any organization.

    • Thanks Jeanine 🙂 For this painting I worked from a reference picture. I also like to work from life whenever is possible.

  • Pingback: Pouring fluid acrylics and negative painting: A green flower bouquet()

  • Judy

    I love this piece of yours! and your tutorials!
    Hoping you could answer a couple questions. Where can I buy granulation medium in canada? and what kind of coloured pencil did you use on this piece?