Basic Cubism - Spring Tulips in watercolour


Simple Tulip painting for Spring

As I write this, the weather is warming and this year's tulips are making an appearance. They are one of my favourite flowers. I love their simple but elegant form, large variety of colour choices and how easy they are to grow!

I have painted them several times in the past for YouTube and wanted to create a new Tulip tutorial for beginners in a different style. Looking at the flower shapes, strong stems and large leaves, I thought that they lent themselves to a Cubism style.

Cubism began in 1907 with Picasso. Cubists painted their subject by breaking it down into geometric shapes. They approached the same subject from different angles together in one painting, overlapping and using transparent layers. In his early Cubist paintings Picasso used the muted earth tones. In this exercise, I decided to use bright colours.

Picasso 1911

Create your own Spring flower painting

Step 1 

Choose some flowers that have a simple shape, Tulips are ideal for this.
Study the flowers from all angles.
On watercolour paper, draw out your painting. Don't over complicate the shapes. Draw the flowers at different angles from all sides. 
Completely fill the paper.

Step 2

For the painting I used the Sennelier travel set of watercolour paints. You can use any nice bright watercolour paints that you have.
Firstly block in the colours. 
(You can see this demonstrated on my accompanying YouTube tutorial)
Allow the paints to dry and add layers to build up the shapes and outlines.

Step 3

I finished by adding texture and shading with Derwent studio coloured crayons.

Link to paint set


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