If you’ve ever tried painting with gouache
on top of watercolor, you probably know how tricky it can get, how fast and easy watercolor
can stain the gouache, especially white gouache, so in today’s video, I’m going to show you
the painting process for this full moon using watercolor and gouache without them interferring
with one another for a beautiful and bright pure white moonlight. But that’s not all because
in this easy watercolor painting, you’ll also learn how to paint a background like this
one in watercolors and how to paint the stars and these are things you can reuse in a lot
of other creations ! Hi I’m Françoise, if you’re a returning subscriber,
thank you for your support, I greatly appreciate it, and if you’re new here, welcome to my
channel ! And before I start I was just wondering when
you guys prefer to watch Youtube videos, I mean, what day of the week do you like the
best because I’m still trying to figure this out for my channel, so I would really appreciate
your feedback on this if you would let me know in the comments.
The very first thing I’m doing to paint this full moon is to take care of the background
and I am using one of my Raphaël natural hair fiber paintbrushes because it’s a large
one and gets the job done quicker and I used only one color, my Winsor and Newton Perylene
violet. By the way all the supplies are linked in the description below but here it really
doesn’t matter which paintbrush or paint brand and color you’re using, although for painting
the moon I recommend a much smaller brush than this one, I would recommend to use something
that can get to a fine tip. Paper matters as well, at least for the background, especially
because here I’m using the wet in wet technique, you can see I’m wetting my paper good enough
that it will stay wet for a few minutes, and the Arches 100% cotton cold pressed paper
I’m using is one of the few that really works wonders with this technique but if you’re
used to any other type that’s totally fine of course !
I’m dropping my paint on the wet paper and because we’re using just one color, we need
to make sure to get several values out of this one color. By values, I mean, light,
average and darker tones to get a variety. So I just drop some paint, then I come back
with more of it, only there’s less water and more paint in my brush, which makes the paint
darker. To make sure my contrast was going to be good here, I also mixed a little bit
of black watercolor to my Perylene violet paint and I added some of that here and there.
I try to get several values in the middle of the sheet as well because that’s where
the moon is going to be, but overall the best technique with such a background, except for
wetting the paper beforehand and also paying attention to contrast, is to be as spontaneaous
as possible when you drop the paint and place your values !
We need to let this dry completely before moving on to painting the moon, so I’m using
a heat gun to speed up the process, and if you have a hair drier, or if you prefer to
wait it out, that’s just fine. Last step here is to trace the circle for
your moon, and for that you can use a compass or just a glass or anything circle shaped.
And that’s what I usually do but today I knew where to find my compass for once so I went
with that one. Now comes the trickier part because like I
said in the beginning, it’s easy to stain gouache with dry watercolor that gets wet
again. That happens when water that you added to the gouache reactivates the paint, or it
can also happen if you rub your gouache covered brush in the dried watercolors a bit too much.
I’ve experimented plenty with that and I’ve had those issues.
But thankfully, I found a way around that and there are two things that will help tremendously
and number one is to use gouache that’s going to be highly concentrated, with as little
added water as possible, and also, number two, is to rub the brush in the watercolors
as little as possible. So now I get my white gouache out and I realize
a bit of water would help to apply it more easily within the circle I just traced, so
I’m adding just enough, just a tiny bit, to be able to paint.
You’ll notice that I’m using two fine tip brushes here, one to apply the gouache, and
a clean and damp one to soften the harsh edges I’m creating.
So what I do is I come in with thick paint, I’m careful to follow the circle to keep it
neat and clean and I actually used a reference picture I found on Pixabay, so my moon is
going to be pretty realistically copied from there. I’ll add the reference details down
in the description if you’d like to do the same or see exactly how I rendered what I
saw on the reference. Applying thick coats of gouache as I’m doing
here has the great advantage of keeping the watercolor from staining it, but also, the
gouache will show a lot more when it dries because the more water you add to it, the
more translucent it will get and on here, even though the background is really dark,
it wouldn’t pop very much if it was too transparent. So this technique of adding minimal amounts
of water to the gouache has great benefits and I think it really works wonders for this
full moon painting. I don’t love the look of the harsh edges I’m
creating using this technique though, so I allow myself a bit more water and for that,
I wet my other brush, and with it I come wet the harsh edge and immediately, the paint
dissolves there and even spreads beautifully, just like watercolors do. If the edge has
already dried a bit, you can rub your clean and damp brush against it but be very careful
not to insist for too long because that’s when the watercolors beneath start working
again. I had to practice several times before I knew exactly how to paint this so don’t
worry if you feel clumsy with the technique the first time, it’s totally normal and you’ll
get it. I love that technique of wetting the edges
I make with my gouache, because it makes the painting look way more realistic, and best
of all, you can get a good moon look with some solid white parts, some more translucent,
just like it is in real life. Where we added water with the clean brush
and where the gouache runs more freely, you can play around, add more gouache in specific
spots, or on the opposite you can add more water to get even more translucent paint.
Again without rubbing in the brush too much into the paper and also be careful if you’re
using a natural hair fiber brush like me because these tend to hold water really well and it’s
easy to add way too much water. That’s one of the issues I had when I was experimenting.
But if that happens you can easily fix things and soak the extra water in with another brush,
or a papertowel, it’s not really going to affect your painting in the end.
There are parts of my moon I want to keep gouache free to get a bunch of values there.
I don’t copy my reference exactly and I guess it doesn’t really matter for realism with
the moon, as long as we do have these different values, a few craters and some detail.
I’m adding like a second layer of gouache where I want the paint to be even whiter and
I decided to add some dots here and there to brighten up those gouache free areas.
What’s great with gouache, unlike watercolor, is that you can fix things later without it
showing, for instance you can fix the edges of the circle to make it more round, and no
one will be able to tell, so that’s a fun medium to use. I know people use that a lot
with watercolor, and I’m starting to think I’d like to explore gouache a bit more. So
let me know what you think in the comments, and if you’re already using it, I’d love to
know how ! Now I’m adding details, some craters, and
again I didn’t copy the reference exactly but I found it very useful because I don’t
think I would have been able to come up with this in that way without a reference even
though a moon drawing could sound like a pretty basic thing to do, but usually with art, I
notice things sound easier than they truly are, so I like to make things easier for myself
and use references. I’m happy with my moon, it took me a while
to figure out how to get it to look like this before i filmed this video, so for me it’s
a good project that had me move forward within my own learning stage.
However, there are many other ways to paint it, and for instance you can check the mini
moon I made in my previous video, I’ll link it up here, and I was doing just the opposite
there, painting a full circle with white gouache and adding watercolors on top. That’s actually
how I got the idea to work on this project to begin with.
Okay, so let’s finish this painting with the stars. I splatter some stars unevenly rubbing
my finger against a brush I dipped into white gouache mixed with a good amount of water
because otherwise it’s really hard to get splatters. And for added fun, I want to add
some shooting stars and that’s it, we’re done !
I hope you enjoyed this video, I really like this moon painting since it’s reusable in
so many other more intricate projects I could do in the future.
And if you enjoyed, please like, comment and share this video, subscribe and click the
notification bell for my next projects, it also helps my channel a lot when you guys
engage with my content and watch my videos, so again thank you for your support.
And until the next video, have a great one and see you soon !