Painting a landscape (Beginner)

For this watercolour painting, you’ll be creating a sunset over the water with some silhouettes in the distance. There are two versions of this lesson— one that’s a great introduction to painting and one that’s a little more advanced. This is the beginner version — check out the advanced version here.

Most of the items you’ll need for this simple watercolour painting can be found around your home — you don’t even need a paintbrush to get started!  

Watch the video or read below for a step-by-step guide on how to create your own sunset watercolour painting.

Step One: Gather Materials

You’ll need to gather the following materials before you start painting:

  • Red, yellow, blue, white, and black paint 
  • Toothbrush 
  • Tupperware full of water 
  • Two plates 
  • Paper towels 
  • Book of watercolour paper 
  • Garbage bag (Or an old bedsheet or tablecloth)
  • Masking tape 


Step Two: Set Up Workstation 

You’ll want to make sure you get your painting station completely set up before you start. You’ll be working continuously once you get started so you can finish your painting before the paint dries. 

Cover the table or countertop you’ll be working on with a garbage bag, table cloth, or bedsheet to protect it from paint and tape it down. Place two pieces of paper towel nearby, stacked on top of one another, and put your container of water near the paper towels.  

Remove a piece of watercolour paper from your book, tear away the perforated edges, and tape it down to your working surface. 

Squirt some small pools of red, yellow, and blue paint onto one of your plates. Take a bit of red and yellow paint onto your brush and mix them together on your second plate to create orange.  

Step Three: Sunset 

With the orange paint still on your brush, dip it in water and start to paint, covering the top half of the page. Then clean your brush using the water and paper towel and switch to yellow paint. Dip your brush in the water again and streak some yellow paint over top of the orange. 

Step Four: Water

Take a bit of red and blue paint onto your brush and mix them together on your second plate to create purple. Add a little bit of yellow to lighten the colour. With the purple paint still on your brush, dip your brush in water and colour the bottom half of the page with purple. Grab some fresh paper towels and clean water and rinse your brush in the sink. 

Step Five: Texture

 Add some white paint to your first plate next to the blue and gradually mix in a little bit of blue to create a light blue colour. With this paint still on your brush, dip it in water and paint over top of the purple.  

Put a little bit of dark blue paint on your brush followed by a little bit of light blue. Tap your brush across the water and the horizon to give it some texture. Add some taps of solid blue to the water as well. Freshen up your paper towels, water, and brush again. 

Step Six: Birds

 Squirt some fresh yellow paint next to your blue and mix them together to create green. Add a little bit of black paint to your mixing plate and put a very small amount on your brush. Mix it into your green to darken it. 

Add some birds to the sky by painting moustache shapes. The smaller your birds are, the farther away they will appear. 

When you’re finished painting, be sure to clean your plates right away so that the paint doesn’t dry and stick to them. Thoroughly clean and dry your brush and put everything away. 

Your landscape painting is now complete. Don’t forget to take a picture and share it on social media with #DAREtogether and tag DAREarts so we can see what you’ve created! 

Looking for more creative activities? Visit our Learn From Home Centre

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