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Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial
Watercolor Painting Tutorial

by Jennifer Branch
YouTube Watercolor Painting Tutorial

Every year, spring starts for me when the huge old flowering cherry trees in front of my house bloom. Their huge froth of pale pink is one of the loveliest things I've ever seen.

It's so difficult to decide what to paint. I tend to focus on smaller things, like the individual blossoms and the bees buzzing through them. Some years, it's the glowing backlighting of the entire tree.

This year, it was a simple painting to share with you. Just a light sketchy painting of pale pink cherry blossoms blowing in the wind.

Happy Spring!

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Watercolor Painting tutorial

Painting Tutorial Level

Beginner
Intermediate

Skill Building

Flowers
Negative Painting
Loose Painting

Art Supplies

9" x 12"
Saunders Waterford Rough Press

Isabey Mop, no.6
Isabey Pointed Round Sable, no.14
Isabey Pointed Round Sable, no.8

Paints

(M. Graham transparent watercolors)

Azo Yellow
Quinacridone Red
Nickel Azo Yellow
Cobalt Blue
Ultramarine Blue
Viridian
Cobalt Violet
Quinacridone Rust
White Gouache
Wax Crayon

Painting Demonstration 1

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Watercolor Painting Lesson 1

Before I begin painting, I reserve a few highlights with a wax crayon.I keep this to just a few of the very white highlights and press lightly for a hit and miss effect on the paper.

I start with a very loose wash of cobalt blue and ultramarine blue. I leave lots of whites to look like distant cherry blossoms.

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Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Reference Photo
Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Reference Photo

Painting Demonstration 2

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Watercolor Painting Lesson 2

I add some nice bright spring greens with a lot of azo yellow. Once the negative painting is done, it's time to start painting the actual subject of the painting - the cherry blossoms!

Painting Demonstration 3

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Painting Tutorial 3

I'm using very subtle cobalt violet and cobalt blue in the flower petals with just slight hints of quinacridone red.

The rough press paper is perfect for the loose, hit and miss strokes.


Artist's Tips

Don't paint every edge and detail. Leave your strokes loose.

Painting Demonstration 4

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Painting Tutorial 4

Continue very lightly moving around the painting. Remember, white flowers are subtle!

The flowers that have already dropped their petals are a lovely bright pink mixed with green. Great contrast!


Painting Demonstration 5

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Painting Tutorial 5

Now I'm increasing the contrast between the flowers and the sky in just a few places. Keep this simple and very light. The rough press texture is your friend!



Painting Demonstration 6

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Watercolor Painting Tutorial 6

Let it dry just a bit before you start adding the delicate filaments. Otherwise it will blur everywhere!


Painting Demonstration 7

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Watercolor Painting Tutorial 7

I add the delicate filaments in white gouache. Reserving the gouache would have felt clunky. It's one of the cases that only gouache would work well.

A bit of splatter paint loosens up the center of the flowers.

Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Watercolor Painting demonstration

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Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial Final Watercolor Painting!

A few more darks behind the flowers and a few subtle details and the painting is done!

I love this huge cherry tree in my front yard. I've painted it for years, but I always find something new every year to paint. It's one of the joys of spring for me!

I hope this inspires you to paint a flowering tree near you this spring!



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Cherry Blossoms Painting Tutorial watercolor painting tutorial by Jennifer Branch




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