Painting Sunflowers in Watercolor

Watercolor paint and pencils on paper – 4×6″

After my disaster with painting sunflowers from a tutorial, I decided to try my hand at painting sunflowers from one of my own photographs as I don’t feel I can sign my name to anything where I used a photo belonging to someone else.  So I started one and it went pear-shaped again. (I love that English expression!)   So guess what I did?  Yup, I went back on the internet and stayed up late watching youtube tutorials on creating backgrounds in watercolor.

I found another great artist named Ross Barbera and his youtube channel is called realisticart.  This guy is so amazing you feel like you are in the room with him.  He takes as much time working on a small painting as he does a large one.  So, I decided to go small and work totally wet in wet.  Here is the reference photo I worked from.

???????????????????????????????Last year some bird seed became sunflowers!  I took some photos and found one of them had a bee.  How great is that?  I didn’t even have to make one up!  I flipped this photo around, cropped it, and enhanced the colors.  I simplified my drawing to fit in a 4 x 6 inch space, to include a border.  I worked wet-in-wet for most of this little painting.  I started with the petals, then leaf, then background.  There are at least 2 or three layers here.  I wasn’t after a completely realistic painting, but something I would be happy with.  If I wanted realism, I would go outdoors or just take a photo.  I used masking fluid to mask out the bee, and salt to make some texture for the center of the flower.  I used the technique for the leaf from Angela Fehr’s sunflower tutorial.  As I was looking up at the sunflower, there was a lovely blue sky in the background, but I didn’t just want to paint in a boring, blue background, hence my quest on the internet.

Once my painting was finished, I felt it needed more, so I got out my Derwent watercolor pencils to add some details and shadows.  I also used them to draw in my bee after all of the paint dried.  I think my favorite part of the painting is the center of the flower and my bee!

Sunflowers are one of my favorite flowers to paint and draw.  I need to find the time to paint them in every art medium!  Here is one I made a few years ago with oil pastels when I didn’t have a clue how to use them!

???????????????????????????????I might have to try this again now that I have more information.  At least I had fun and that is the name of the art game!


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