Watercolor Washes: 5 Essential Building Blocks For Watercolor Painting

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Course Level:

Total Run Time:
1 hour, 37 minutes

Total Videos:

Course Description:

One of the most essential techniques for a new beginner watercolorist to learn is how to paint a wash. This course is designed to walk you through everything you need to get started with watercolor washes. You’ll learn what a wash is, why it’s important for watercolor painting, and where you will use washes in your practice.

Then we’ll dive into how to do each of the five different washes with step-by-step instructions. Once you’ve learned the techniques, you’ll get to apply those techniques with five projects that focus on each type of wash.

What You Will Learn:

  • What washes are and why they’re important
  • How washes are used
  • 5 different watercolor washes
  • 5 paint-along projects using each wash style

Supplies You’ll Need:

  • Watercolor paper
  • Large paintbrush (flat/round/mop)
  • 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?

  • 13 Videos (over 1.5 hours of content)
  • 5 Class Projects
  • Project Feedback (Optional)
  • Self-Paced

Course Level: Beginner
Run Time: 1 hour, 37 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 2 months ago
Drying time, patience, consider a "mess up" as valuable learning!

All the projects were great fun. I learned best when I completed multiples of the same project. Also, the way Shelby had us paint all the washes side by side and dry vs.wet of the same wash was brilliant! Each section was thoroughly explained. Shelby gave me the sense that I really can watercolor!

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Avatar Lori
Posted 8 months ago
Let it dry!

Most important thing I learned in this section was the importance of drying between washes to get the proper effect. As well as the importance of enough water for the gradients. I liked all the hands on exercises. (Sorry about the text on my paintings - used scrap paper.)

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Avatar Janet Gillis
Posted 12 months ago
Vital Skill You Need to Know

Another course that you just need to take to be successful in water coloring. Knowing how to create washes is a vital skill. I keep my creations on the wall where I paint and refer to them frequently.

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Avatar Susan Casey
Posted 12 months ago
All the modules were very helpful

I really enjoyed the course and the projects. I value to feedback provided and will practice more to try and improve on the techniques. Thank you.

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Avatar Gail Prouse
Posted 1 year ago
Confidence Builder!!!!

I enjoyed this course as a newbie to watercoolers. The feed back on projects was great and just what i needed to nudge me along!

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Avatar Jim Rose
Posted 1 year ago
Water and pigment control

Shelby does a great job explaining techniques and the projects are challenging while not being intimidating. (Actually, for me, a couple of projects were intimidating but perseverance allowed me to learn some techniques that made the process fun)

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Avatar birinkova
Posted 1 year ago
So useful

I love this course so far. It is easy to follow, the assignments are fun and not complicated to do. And you get to practice what you have learned right away.

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Avatar BrittneyE
Posted 1 year ago
easy to follow instructions

The instruction was very easy to follow and I appreciated the explanation as to why and not just what, for example when discussing the glaze, the reason we needed to wait for the first layer to dry to prevent color bleeding was useful information

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Avatar Thomas Beltran
Posted 2 years ago
Where to actually begin for a true beginner

What I have enjoyed the most is finally connecting with Shelby at the very beginning level for an old timer. She has explained things very well and has given excellent demonstrations as to what materials I need and where to begin - baby steps.

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Avatar Marianne
Posted 2 years ago
My review

My favorite course so far! Everyting is perfect: the explanations, the step by step projects leading, the projects themselves... I would recommend doing the Layering course first, as this one feels like the natural continuation of it. Also, by doing it in that order, the Layering projects, more academic oriented, don't feel too 'simple' compared to the 5 AMAZING PROJECTS proposed here. If you have very little watercolour knowledge (like me), this is a must do, asap.

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