Should You Outline A Watercolor?


Should You Outline A Watercolor?

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Painting is an artistic and creative activity. It gives you such a sense of satisfaction when you can transfer an object or scenery onto paper with pencils, markers, or paint. 

Watercolor is a wonderful way of painting that creates luminous and almost transparent art. It uses pigment mixed with water that glides smoothly on a canvas. 

A versatile kind of art, watercolor expresses life and produces effects no other medium can. When beginning a watercolor painting you may wonder if you should start with an outline.

You should outline your watercolor painting so that it is easier to do. Without any outline getting the watercolor perfect is more difficult. 

In watercolor you have so much freedom in how to do it. Because of this freedom, this type of painting requires a lot of planning work. 

You should first make a sketch of what the picture is that you want to make. Then map out where the lightest and darkest parts of the painting will be. 

It is helpful to outline before you start adding the watercolor so you already have an idea of how it will look and all you need to do is just add color. Watercolor paints are usually started or ended with an outline. 

This, however, is a personal preference and you may do whatever you like with your painting. 

Outlining just makes it easier for you as you paint. You could also use a sketch as a reference to create your artwork.

When outlining a watercolor, it is up to you whether you do it before or after. Find whichever method works best for you and enjoy your painting.

The right kind of pens will make the process go more smoothly. You will want to use pens that are designed to withstand water. In watercolor you use a lot of water and so you need pens that won’t smear or smudge. 

If you decide to outline after the watercolor is done make sure it is completely dry first. You don’t want to risk smudging your carefully painted masterpiece. 

If you have outlined the painting beforehand and pencil lines are showing through after you watercolor, you can add ink outlines to cover them up. This gives the painting a new look while also covering up the pencil marks.

To see the most popular watercolors just click here. 

Should You Outline Before Or After Watercoloring? 

Like every good artist knows, you need a reference or inspiration when painting. Even advanced painters have a mental note of how something looks in order to transfer that idea down on paper with color. 

Another thing artists do is find whatever works best for them when working on a piece.

When you outline a watercolor is completely up to you. You can outline before or after for different effects when painting.

When you outline a watercolor painting before you begin, it will be easier for you to know what the picture will look like and all you have to do is add the color.

At the start of painting, sketch what the painting will be. Then outline the picture. You can also shade some areas that need to be darker and make other areas lighter so you know how to paint them. 

Mapping out a watercolor is a good idea to make your final result pop with different dimensions. 

If you use the right type of pen in your watercolor art, you can outline after without smudging it. Archival pens are great to use after the watercolor has dried to add in the final details and outlines in your piece. 

Remember that it is your painting so you can do it however you want. Find what works best for you and enjoy being creative with watercolors.

How Do You Outline A Watercolor? 

Watercolor paintings offer a dreamy depiction of its subject. Luminous colors are slightly transparent offering a feeling of dreaminess. 

In order to paint one of these types of paintings, you must first know how to begin.

By following some simple steps on how to paint a watercolor you will be on your way to creating beautiful artwork.

Let’s get right into how to do a watercolor properly. 

First, choose a heavier, absorbent, and textured watercolor paper. Next you will draw the subject lightly with a pencil. Using a grid can be helpful for beginners as well as looking at a reference. You can then apply a liquid mask over the pencil marks to prevent them from being washed away. 

This helps keep the outline of your sketch and will later be removed.

The next step is to mix your paint with water on a watercolor palette with a brush. Start by painting the background sections of the picture with a large brush and then use a smaller brush for more detailed work. 

After the painting is completely dry you should go back in and strip off the liquid mask by pulling it off. As the final step, draw with ink over the pencil lines outlining your artwork according to how you want it to look.

Why Is Watercolor So Difficult? 

Have you ever done a watercolor painting and realized it is harder than you thought it would be? The paper soaks up the liquid paint so quickly and the whole thing takes a lot of planning and work. 

Watercolor is even considered the most difficult medium to paint with by many people. 

Watercolor is the hardest medium to paint with because it takes a lot of planning before you begin. 

Every good watercolor piece starts with a lot of planning. Painting with watercolors can be difficult to master because it can be so unpredictable. 

Mistakes made when painting with watercolor are hard to correct and the fluid nature of the water is hard to control. Because the paint is so liquidy you do not get harsh lines when painting and instead it gives you a nice and soft blend. 

If a mistake is made it will be tricky to fix and will also easily show through because of the transparency of the watercolor paint. Still, these are the things that make watercolor so unique and beautiful.

Watercolor is also permanent and the paper tends to soak up the fluid paint quickly leaving the color dried into place. 

You can try to blot mistakes with a towel but even that sometimes won’t work. 

There is also no white paint in watercolor so this requires extra planning at the beginning so you do not get color on the sections that need to remain white. The things that make watercolor difficult to do are the things that also make it wonderful. 

You can choose to do your painting however you want and have fun exploring new easy of doing watercolor art

Final Thoughts 

Watercolor art is fun and brings out your creative side. You can choose to do the painting however you wish. 

Outlining before or after using watercolor is entirely up to you but will make for a more well-put-together piece. Now that you know how to do it, enjoy the relaxing experience painting with watercolor brings.

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