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with Ronald Pratt
Online Class

Nature in Watercolor: Painting Trees

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Learn how to paint aspen trees and vibrant foliage with captivating form alongside instructor Ronald Pratt. Start by planning a compelling composition with a value sketch. Then, block in the major elements of your painting and mask out negative space for your aspens. Get tips for mixing rich colors in the hues and values you want, and use them with a variety of techniques and tools to create breathtaking foliage, textured grasses and more. Next, lighten and darken values to add dimension to your work, paint dark pine trees in the distance and add interest to the sky. Remove your liquid mask to reveal brilliant white aspen trunks, and then add shadows for depth before bringing your trees to life with branches, scrapes and knots. Plus, fine-tune your work with painterly effects for an organic, outstanding finished piece.


  • intermediate
  • 7 episodes
  • 2h31m

Included in this Class

1. The Value Study

1. The Value Study

Meet your instructor, watercolor artist Ronald Pratt, as he introduces you to the vibrant treescape you'll paint over the course of this class. Your work begins with finding reference photos and creating value sketches that will help you determine the composition and values you'll use in your painting.

2.  Masking

2. Masking

Block in your major elements and explore the addictively fun qualities of masking as Ronald demonstrates ways to preserve crisp whites across your paper. Familiarize yourself with Ronald's masking techniques before using them to distinguish lights and darks in your painting. Additionally, you'll learn how to prevent making mistakes later on.

3. Mixing Colors

3. Mixing Colors

Mixing various colors is one of the most enjoyable elements of watercolor painting, and Ronald offers helpful tips for mixing the exact hues and values that you want. Learn Ronald's unique palette setup, which prevents troublesome color contamination, and practice blending water and paints to achieve the consistency, vibrancy and hues that you desire.

Recommended with this class

  • Watercolor paints, watercolor brushes, watercolor paper
  • Masking fluid