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sakura koi

Watercolors Expressive Florals and Leaves

By Cards


Today’s card features a technique called expressive florals. I love this technique in that it is creating a suggestive image. In this case I chose to do some rounded brushstrokes that suggest a flower head, but I didn’t have any certain type in mind. It is not meant to be a botanical piece but rather expressive of something a person may recognize to be a type of flower they have once seen.

I added in some dry brush strokes in green to create the image of leaves and veins – but again, they are all suggestive. I think this type of expression was by far the most fun of the class. It will be one technique that I continue to try and incorporate into projects.

Watercolor Stamped Scenes

By Cards


Hi all,

Today’s card features a technique of watercolor that uses stamped images to create a scene. This card doesn’t necessarily have a precise story to tell, but it is more an expressive story.

I repeatedly stamped a feather across the page and then began a technique called negative space coloring. I added several brush loads of water onto the card and then began dropping in color on to the feathers. I started with yellows, then worked my way into greens, added a splash or two of reds (which turned into a lovely autumn shade of brown) and then after everything dried, added in blues.

Once everything was dry I used a lifting technique of using a wet paintbrush to pick up pigment from the places I didn’t want it. Which in this case was the center area of the feathers. I liked how some of the feather is defined and other areas are losely covered with pigment. Very cool.

I don’t know what exact story this image tells but It defintely sends positive vibes.


I added in a fun sentiment and called it finished on this card.

Watercolor Brush Techniques and Washes – Part 1

By Cards


Hi all,

I’ve started up another online card class and this on focuses on watercolor mediums. I’m by no means advanced in this realm, but I thought it would be a great place to start and give myself a bit of a challenge.

Today’s lesson was JAM PACKED with lessons on brush techniques and washes. To practice I decided to go with a color combo I knew blended well from my Sakura Koi palette set. Having a glazing chart really helped for this! See my glazing chart here. I wanted to work with my brush and pigment in a way that would create a gradient. Again I chose the same colors as the day before.

To create the pattern I penciled in a grid using a t-square ruler. When I painted in the color I just made sure not to cover the line, but just come near it. After I knew my paper was completely dry, I erased those lines. Eventually, this created the white space between each diamond.

To create the gradient this look I darkened the right side of each diamond. As I continued to work my way through the grid, I made sure to alter the amount of pigment and change the colors a bit so that the piece would not look uniform

The finished look resembles glass or gems.


Washes are very simple to do and take very little time. It also helps when there is structure to the wash. Geometric patterns make for great clean and simple cards. Try it out! Make yourself a geometric pattern using a ruler and a pencil. Then color in the pattern using variations of color. This look can be achieved with color pencils, crayons, paints, markers…the list is endless! Just make one side the light source (lighter) and the other side the shadow (darker). Good luck friends!

Watercolor Brush Techniques and Washes – Part 2

By Cards

Hi all,

I’m by no means advanced in the realm of watercolor, but I thought it would be a great place to start and give myself a bit of a challenge.

Today’s lesson was JAM PACKED with more ideas on brush techniques and washes. I wanted to try my hands at some leaves and the wet-to-wet technique. I wet the paper in a leaf shape and then used wet pigment to drop in the color. Here I used Prussian Blue and Yellow Green from my Sakura Koi set. I used variations of the colors to achieve different leaves each time around.

This was my result.


Here’s a closer look at all the variations of color. Again, I’m pretty much a beginner with watercolors and just playing with the medium. I’m hoping to incorporate more washes and techniques into future cardmaking.


Hope this quick post inspires you to try something a little new today! Have a fantastic week friends!