Watercolor Layering: 5 Tips For Creating Depth, Intensity, And Color

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Course Level:

Total Run Time:
52 minutes

Total Videos:

Course Description:

One of the most important skills you can learn as a watercolor artist is how to layer your watercolors. Most new watercolorists overlook this essential skill and end up frustrated with their work because it doesn’t turn out the way they expected. The truth is, watercolor is meant to be layered – like, a lot.

If you try to create a painting with only a few layers, you will end up with something that is flat and lacks contrast or visual complexity. Layering adds immense depth, color intensity, and deep contrast that you can’t get any other way with this medium.

This course will walk you through the basic steps to layering, as well as my five best tips for layering effectively and two projects that focus on layering.

What You Will Learn:

  • What layering is and why it is important
  • How to layer watercolors
  • 5 tips for layering effectively
  • 2 paint-along projects utilizing layering

Supplies You’ll Need:

  • Watercolor paper
  • Large paintbrush
  • Watercolor paint
  • Masking tape
  • 2 jars of water
  • Cotton rag (or paper towels)
  • Heat tool (optional)

Explore Class Projects:

In this course, you’ll learn to create these amazing class projects, but more importantly, you’ll learn how to create your own pieces in the future.

This course is part of the Watercolor Academy

What’s In The Course?

  • 11 Videos
  • 2 Class Projects
  • Project Feedback (Optional)
  • Self-Paced

Course Level: Beginner
Run Time: 52 minutes

Meet Your Instructor:

Shelby Abrahamsen

Blogger at LittleCoffeeFox.com

Ratings and Reviews

Avg. Rating
14 Ratings
What's your experience? We'd love to know!
Avatar Lois D
Posted 1 month ago
Layering is key

At first I thought What's the point? As I worked, I was intrigued with the color changes. I'm pleased with how my project looks. The finished color pops!

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Posted 4 months ago
Valuable class!

I really loved the exercise. I had no idea you could layer watercolors like this. I am so glad I took this course! Well done!

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Avatar Mary Sharp
Posted 8 months ago
Layering is the magic

I didn't realize just how important layering is to making watercolor paintings glow. Now I see it for myself, and I really loved watching the circles transform as we continued adding more layers of paint. It was fun!

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Avatar Jim Rose
Posted 11 months ago
Layering is an important basic.

As a beginning beginner, I didn't know what to expect but followed along like a good student only to really appreciate the importance of layering while working on my final projects.

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Avatar Janet Gillis
Posted 11 months ago
Important Skill to Master

This course is vital for everyone learning watercolor. The layer technique is well explained and demonstrated. You'll be glad you took this course.

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Avatar Debra Rogler
Posted 11 months ago
Good basic course

It helped me get the hang of washes. I particularly like the wet on wet due to the varied results.

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Avatar kit_erinsen
Posted 1 year ago
Extremely worth it

I absolutely loved the layering breakdowns in this course and found the exercises very helpful. I’ve never had as concise and breakdown on watercolor layering before.

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Avatar dlcosper
Posted 1 year ago
Lots of tips

This was full of helpful tips for layering. It helped me understand why I've been having issues with my blending. The biggest tip is be patient.

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Avatar Tayler
Posted 1 year ago
Super helpful and fun!

AMAZING course! This taught me so much. I really liked the projects that Shelby gave, they were super simple shapes but the power the project took on as you added layers was SUCH a testament to how important it is to ADD LAYERS TO YOUR PROJECTS! It really does make them stand out so beautifully, even with simple circular shapes. Highly recommend this course if you want to up-level your watercolor.

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Avatar Marianne
Posted 2 years ago
My review

My first dip in watercolor and it was a great adventure! I have learned a lot!

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