Making Colours Pop – As Easy as 1, 2, 3

Do you look at other people’s watercolour sketches and wonder how their colours look so intense? So bright and clear? In short, how they POP?

It’s not hard to make colours shout out from the page with intense vibrancy. You just need to learn a few very simple tips.

People ask me a LOT how I make my colours so intense. They even ask what medium I’m using. I suspect they don’t associate strong colours with watercolour – but actually, if you use good-quality artists’ paints, you can get deep, vibrant and very intense colours with watercolour.

There are a lot of watercolour sketches that are drawn with competence, but are somewhat let down by weak, wishy-washy colours. It’s a pity, because it’s an issue that is SO easy to fix. So easy, in fact, that you’ll be able to really master the skill of making something look “real” out there on the street, with no need to touch up back home. In fact, it’s a very common misconception that you can take a photo and finish off painting away from your location. You can, but it won’t have that magic sense of “being there” that only comes from painting your subject directly.

I’m going to tell you how I make my subjects “pop” in three steps – it’s as easy as 1,2,3. Of course, I can only tell you how I paint, and strong colour is my style. You might prefer a more subtle look – pared-back isn’t really my style.

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