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How To Produce Water-colour Birthday Cards

     Painting in watercolours is one of the most well-liked crafts in the United Kingdom. This can largely be because of the delicate effects of depth, texture and brightness, which can be achieved through delicate washes. Watercolour is also appealing because of it's portability - all you need is a paint box, brushes and a sheet of paper. Often we discover that artists will apply their watercolour techniques to birthday cards and this article offers all the information needed to getting started to paint in watercolour.


Getting Going:
To begin painting in watercolour, you need 3 simple things;
Some decent beginners' materials
A subject matter to paint
A basic technique

Equipment Needed:
A beginners palette of water colours can consist of the below paints:
Lemon Yellow Hue
Cadmium Yellow Pale Hue
Cadmium Red Hue
Permanent Rose
Alizarin Crimson Hue
Intense Blue
Viridian Hue
Raw Umber
Yellow Ochre
Burnt Sienna
Chinese White

Added Supplies:
Four main brushes
Pencil & Eraser
Board or Hard Surface
Roll of Masking tape
Water pot or container
Flat Plastic Palette/Tray
Reasonable size board for your Birthday cards

What to paint - Finding a subject:
Many artists find it difficult to be encouraged by the commonplace everyday objects. However, true artists can turn the very ordinary thing into something special by purely looking at it innovatively. It may be a landscaping, a structure, an inside scene such as a lounge, or still life like flowers or bottles. If you feel truly positive you may wish to attempt a portrait (of the loved one you're giving the birthday card to), botanical colouring or even an abstract. Your painting doesn't have to be exact or perfect, remember art is in the eye of the artist not the critic.

Painting a Watercolour Landscape:
Landscapes are possibly the best for novices and the subsequent fundamental technique can be applied. Four general rules apply when colouring a landscape.

Your View - As an artist you will be looking to create a visual version of your chosen scene, it is not a duplicate but an illusion of what you're painting. Remember, it is how you see it and paint it that makes it a unique work of art for those birthday cards and also canvas.

Aerial Perspective - Take your time to have a look at the scene you aspire to paint and 4 contrastive aspects should be evident. Initially the items further away will look smaller. Secondly, the far-away objects will not be as detailed. Third, colours become less vivid if they are further away. Fourthly, as objects diminish their tones become paler and less contrasted.

Composition - Making use of your pencil, lightly sketch the outline of the landscape. Ensure you set out a horizon, middle and foreground within your landscape. Normally, this works as the horizon being the backdrop of the painting with the horizon line being about a third from the bottom of the page. Many beginners begin drawing the horizon half way up the page - although our eye only sees 30-40% of the "surface matter" in any given scene and the remainder is sky.
When you have drawn the basic outline of your landscape, you are now ready to apply the colour into your picture.

Picking a paint tray of colours:
The general practice is to sustain a broad palette of around 12 colours and add to it for certain necessities. For example, you may find that many birthday cards are regularly vivid in colour and consequently you might wish to add some brighter contrasts to your work.

Once you have obtained the initial paint tray, the following thing is to decide on a suitable board.

Which board?
Watercolour board is mould made board and is often free from acid giving it a longer life with no wear and tear. The board is pre-sized making it possible for the artist to sponge and erase (if necessary) without damaging the board.

Basic Technique:

Squeeze a small amount from your water-colour paint tubes or dab a wet paint brush into your watercolour pan - usually start with three primary colours - a red, blue and yellow.

Use a round brush and start placing some blue on the sky, before dabbing the colour with a damp tissue to produce cloud shapes by opening out the pint.

After that, work onto the outlying horizon line making use of subdued colours (i.e. weak blues, grey and yellows diluted with water) then onto the onto the middle ground part using more blue and greens prior to moving onto the foreground using yellowy-greens and more powerful, more vivid colours - not weakened with too much water. Note: If you are colouring a medium sized birthday card, you may wish to reduce the range of the outline before starting to paint.
After you have created those colours you could then build up a succession of layers to suit your style. If you are really adventurous, you might want to try the wet-into-wet procedure. This is where the paints combine while they are still wet. It makes lovely, delicate tones for your birthday cards and is excellent for glum, atmospheric paintings so as to lighten up the cards for the person having the birthday.

One more method, is generating a watercolour wash, which offers several special effects for instance, graduation, granulation and flecked. Without being overly technical, a wash is really where one colour changes because of the water content being merged with the raw colour. Such effect is developed by beginning at the top of a dried out piece of board. Paint a band of darkened colour (ultramarine blue), before adding more water to the paint brush and create a subsequent band underneath the initial one. Continue doing this until you have a graded wash i.e. the colour shifts from dark to light and in some cases see through. When colouring birthday cards, you need not to worry over adding the greeting 'happy birthday', as the message may be written on the inner side the card with the front giving light to your creative abilities.

Some Finishing Advice

DON'T - mess around with the painting; once the birthday card is complete, don't add more touches thinking you will improve it.

DON'T - Let your palette become too wet.

The colour should be allowed to dry in between stages of application unless you are using the wet-into-wet method. Maybe use a hairdryer to improve the drying time.

Regularly refer to the object you are painting and to your piece of art.

Start painting from the top of the board.

Always wash your materials with soap and water.

Paint loosely; don't get hung up on accuracy. Remember that it's a painting not a photocopy.

Mark is a crafts and hobbies expert and especially likes to make birthday cards before writing about his experiences on behalf of

Scripter and marketer for offering charming watercolour birthday cards. Visit in the UK today.

Article Source:

Mark is a crafts and hobbies expert and especially likes to make birthday cards before writing about his experiences on behalf of

Posted on 2012-12-01, By: *

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Note: The content of this article solely conveys the opinion of its author.

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