Watercolor Technique Landscapes

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Watercolor Technique Landscapes

I've been trying to find a lesson that incorporates watercolor techniques in a fun, exciting lesson that is easy for beginning artists to create a successful painting. Well, I couldn't find it. So I created it.

This same technique can be applied to more than just landscapes. I'm excited to try it as animals, or floral paintings as well!

Here are the basics:
  • Medium -Watercolor
  • Project Length - 2-3 weeks
  • Grade - 5-12
  • Objective - Explore color theory, composition, atmospheric perspective and unity.
  • Materials - Watercolor Paint, Watercolor Brushes, Water, Watercolor paper, palettes, Sharpie Markers, copy paper, Plastic cups with lids, rubbing alcohol, vinegar, masking fluid or tape, salt, sponges, sand paper, watercolor pencils (optional), eye droppers and anything else that you may think to use. Some of my students used burlap and plastic wrap.
  • Technique: We start by creating a technique grid of about 24 different watercolor techniques. I then have students look up reference for their landscape, trace the basic shapes and then start to scale thumbnails. I explain the rule of thirds with examples in my powerpoint and show examples of student work. I have them start thumbnails by finding the upper third of the thumbnail and begin with the horizon, adding shapes as they move down their drawing. Shapes get larger as them come into the foreground. They then start to explore the techniques that they will use on their final paintings as well as come up with a color plan. We talk about complementary colors and warm/cool colors. Next they draw their final landscapes in Sharpie onto stretched watercolor paper. They then start filling in shapes using the techniques that they mastered.
For more inspiration google 'stained glass landscapes' or take a look at Ted Edinger's, Robin Mead's and Caitlin Lovato's painted artwork at the following links:

For a link to my Watercolor Technique Landscape Art Lesson look here:
Here is a shortened version of the process:

Here are some student samples.


Final Painting:

Final painting in process:

Final Painting

Color Plan (Small Scale)

Final Painting

Technique Practice:

 Final Painting

More Final Paintings

My students really enjoyed this project and they have a beautiful stained glass quality when they are done. They are so bright and colorful and make a beautiful spring display by our library! Have fun with this one! Sabrina, A Space to Create!


  1. Hi! What kind of watercolors are you using with your students? Are they liquid, they look very bright and beautiful. Thank you.

  2. Yes liquid watercolor. Student grade Grumbacher.

  3. I love these watercolors! They look like stained glass! Very unique.

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  5. Since you're asking for money for this, I wonder if you realize that it's someone else's intellectual property: note the date on his flickr photos (2007) https://www.flickr.com/photos/tntede/4067373546/

    1. Just saw a pin on Pinterest and was interested if this was being linked back to my grad work. Here is the blog I created in 2010 with my final show. Would appreciate link back. Thanks! Happy creating.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Dear Unknown,
      I did not use anyone else's intellectual property. I sell art lessons, not artwork and I created the lesson. All of the artwork featured was created by my students and belongs to no one else.
      Sabrina Wingren

  6. Hi Ted,
    I'm sorry for any confusion. I don't sell artwork, only art lessons. I created a PowerPoint presentation that takes students through watercolor techniques then teaches them to abstract a landscape and fill in the spaces with the techniques they created. All of the artwork shown in this blog was created by my high school students. I looked at your work and it is beautiful! I don't remember seeing it before creating my lesson, but it's possible that I saw it then applied the idea to my lesson. Possibly even pinned your work at some point, I'm not sure. Regardless, I'd love to include a link to your work as I think it would be wonderful inspiration for students everywhere. Sincerely, Sabrina Wingren

  7. I am a new JH/HS art teacher and am so thankful when I come across well written lessons with examples. This will be perfect for my watercolor lesson. Thank you so much for taking your time to help out others :)




Follow by Email

A Space to Create


Who's Who and Who's New Blog

Teachers Pay Teachers Store