Painting SPECIAL EFFECTS & pro tips for more watercolor fun.
4.3 (132 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
2,606 students enrolled

Painting SPECIAL EFFECTS & pro tips for more watercolor fun.

Learn watercolour effects & techniques to make your work stand out. What to use how to do it and where to use it. Easy.
4.3 (132 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
2,606 students enrolled
Last updated 11/2019
English [Auto]
Current price: $26.99 Original price: $44.99 Discount: 40% off
12 minutes left at this price!
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This course includes
  • 2 hours on-demand video
  • 4 articles
  • 15 downloadable resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
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What you'll learn
  • Get more fun and enjoyment out of your watercolour painting
  • Make your watercolour paintings stand out from the crowd.
  • Give drama to your watercolour paintings.
  • Look like you have been painting for years
  • Use common household substances for special effects
  • Use easily available objects to paint with other than brushes
  • Create more realistic images.
  • Enthusiasm and an open mind about watercolour paints
  • The ability to adapt
  • Watercolour paints
  • Watercolour paper
  • Water containers
  • You will also need, cling film, absorbent kitchen paper, palette or dining knife, sponge, feather, stencil, salt , masking tape and fluid.

  Do you want to take your watercolor painting to a higher level ? 

       Do you want to give your paintings that WOW factor ? 

       Do you feel that you are a bit stuck ? 

       hen this is the course for you. 

This course is for anyone interested in starting to paint with watercolors and also for those who are already painting with them but would like to lift their work to the next level.

I'll demonstrate every step of the way, from just using your different brushes 'effectively', through to using other tools and substances. This course is a great place to start on your watercolor painting journey and if you are a complete beginner it is a great companion course to my 'Start WATERCOLOR PAINTING EFFORTLESSLY, play & be creative'

This course  is made up of 'easy to follow' videos, demonstrating different effects which you can use. Some techniques use tools other than brushes and some use substances easily available

Look over my shoulder as I talk about each one and SHOW you how to do them. 

Unconditional Udemy 30 day money-back guarantee - that's my personal promise of your enjoyment!

Who this course is for:
  • A GREAT course for the beginner, as it's ALL PLAY
  • This will help you if you are feeling 'stuck'
  • Maybe you aren't sure what some of your brushes can do
  • Not for the very experienced watercolour painter.
  • Build your confidence by learning something extra.
Course content
Expand all 29 lectures 02:02:08
+ What are Painting Special Effects
1 lecture 01:12

A brief introduction to the course outlining what you will learn.

Preview 01:12
+ Brushes Only and Making Marks
4 lectures 29:51

As part of the 'brushes only' section, here I show how to literally let your brush do the work. The chisel, or flat brush can give you some great marks if you just use your imagination. Here I show you how to construct a tree to create a peeling bark effect.

The photograph added a a resource shows a section from a painting I did using (in part) this technique.

Preview 04:40

As in lecture 4, 'let your brush do the work.'

Here are a few ideas of different tree and leaf shapes you can paint with this type of brush. Just look around you and see what else this handy little brush could paint for you.

And don't forget to post your finding for the rest of us to enjoy.

THIS VIDEO ENDED rather abruptly, but on checking my notes and pictures can tell you that it was at the end.

RESOURCES - I have added a photograph of a Weeping Willow

Paint grass, leaves foliage and more with the flick of a brush

This demonstration shows you how to load two colours onto a chisel brush. This gives you more options to create different effects.

Resource: Pictures of roof tiles and folk art painting

The picture relating to folk art is taken from the book 'Folk Art Style' by Sybil Edwards

Learn how to double load your brush

Have a play with this wet-and-dry technique and play with different colours and effects.

Paint a basic wood grain effect
+ Using Masks of different types.
6 lectures 23:34

Masking tape can be quite helpful to give you a really straight edge, create an interesting pattern or cut a paper one in the shape to suit your needs.

You will need a roll of masking tape, some paper and a pair of scissors

Using MASKING TAPE and a paper mask

A more precise way of masking off areas from your paint.

You will need some masking fluid either in a bottle with a nozzle or in a pot. If you have a pot, use an old brush to apply it. Although if you put soap on your brush first it makes it easier to remover afterwards. Otherwise you could use a cocktail stick or the end of a paint brush. You certainly don't want to spoil a brush.

Masking FLUID

Here is an idea for you. Usually you may be using the masking fluid part way though starting the painting. Here I am starting with the masking fluid and using it as a drawing tool. It's just to show you another thinking process and having fun at the same time.

More clever stuff with masking fluid

A film to give you a few ideas of using masking fluid when you want water effects. Play with it in different ways and create a range of ripples, waves and even waterfalls.

Just play around with it and see what you can come up with. And remember water is often the colour of what it is reflecting.

Resource: A painting I did of the Canal du Midi

Part one, paint water effects

When the fluid is dry you can put on your first layer of paint.

Part two, paint water effects

When the fluid is dry, gently rub it off and make adjustments by adding more paint wherever you think it is needed

Part three, paint water effects
+ Creating Different Effects by using Tools other than your brushes.
6 lectures 17:24

The use of a palette knife is usually associated with thick paint such as oil or acrylic paints as you use the khife to spread the paint on the surface and mix colours. However it can be used with watercolour paints to give you some different effects. If you don't have a palette knife, try and ordinary kitchen knife.

You will need a palette knife, kitchen knife or even a stiff peice of card.


When making marks with a paint brush, often people get into a rhythm and tend to create a pattern. This may not be what you want if you are painting a subject from nature. So an object from nature, such as a feather, can give you some super random marks. So next time you are out on a walk and see one, pick it up and keep it with your brushes.

You will need a feather, pretty much any sort, some with spread out differently to others, so just play with it.

Preview 02:21

Most of the time you are learning about how to put the paint onto your paper. Let's not forget that you can get some unusual effects by lifting it off with a variety of different Here are a few. Experiment and tell me what you have used and I'll add it to the course.

You will need some cling film, a natural sponge, some bubble wrap and some absorbent kitchen towel

Lifting Paint OFF

You will need an old toothbrush or a stiff bristle brush that you might use for painting with acrylic paint.

SPLATTERING using an old toothbrush
Splattering through a STENCIL

Simply by spraying some water onto already wet paint can push it around. Try spraying at different angles, close to and further away.

You can also do this to dry paper to prepare it for a wash.

Using a water spray to diffuse the paint
+ Combining other Substances with your Paints
11 lectures 46:00

Have another go at using the resist and paint a lemon. It's also a good effect for an avocado, trees and walls.

Paint a lemon with the wax resist

Try this for a change.

Mix a strong solution of salt water and apply it to the paper before you paint. Try different types of salts and varying concentrations.

Start with a layer of salt water.

Ordinary table salt can give you some fascinating effects.

You will need some fine table salt.

Using SALT

A 'resist' is something which stops the paint from staying on the paper and so staining the paper with the pigment. The water in the paint mix will not adhere to the was and so is resisted.

You will need a white and clean candle stub.

Using a WAX resist

This video shows you what happens when you drop a liquid called ox gall onto a wet patch of watercolour paint.

Share with other what other effects you create.

Using Ox Gall

Having shown you what effect ox gall has on the watercolour paint this video shows you how I used it to give an interesting effect on a tree,

Why don't you see where you could use it and post your results? I'd like to see what you have discovered.

Painting a tree using ox gall

Less expensive than ox gall it gives a similar effect, if a bit more defined. I will post more showing you where I have used it.

Resource: Photo of samples

Using pure alcohol

Watercolour pencils are a great addition to any painting bag and I recommend them. Buy them either individually or in sets.

You will need a watercolour pencil and a piece of sandpaper or an emery board.

Preview 03:20

So take a look at theses questions and see what you have remembered. And if you want to claim your certificate make sure you tick the complete box at the end of this and each lecture

Watercolour Painting Techniques - Special Effects
4 questions