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Watercolor Tutorial: Moon Phases Illustration

by Nabaa Afridi 10 Apr 2020 1 comment

Hello and welcome back to the Archer and Olive blog. It's Nabaa from @whimsicial.doodles! For today's post, I have some watercolor fun planned out :)

Lately, one of my favorite things to paint has been the moon. I doodle them all across my journal. So today, we're working on a Moon Phase Illustration!

Here's what you'll need to create this illustration:

Watercolor Illustration: Supplied

If you haven't checked out the watercolor range of notebooks by Archer and Olive, you're missing out! They are extremely easy to work with - the paper is able to handle a ton of water without warping. Check them out here!

Check out the video tutorial here: 

Read on for the text version of this tutorial:

For this illustration, I wanted to create 3 moons - a full moon and 2 crescents. So to start off, I divided the page and set up a layout: 

 Watercolor Tutorial: Moon Phases

Next, draw in your moon shapes. I did this using my circle maker but you can use anything that makes it easy. 

Watercolour Tutorial: Moon Phases

Draw in your shapes and then using a bit more pressure, go over the shapes so as to create a slight dent along the lines. This will help you make out the shapes even after you color on the page. (At this point I also realized my moon shape was off so I went ahead and changed the third moon)
 Watercolour Tutorial: Moon Phases

Before the next step, I taped the edges of the paper using washi tape for a clean edge. Now we paint! I'm using the wet on wet technique to get a nice even flow of color. Go over the page using a large wet brush. Don't worry about getting the page too wet - this paper can totally handle it! Once the page is wet, start adding in your watercolor, going over the whole page.

Watercolour Tutorial: Moon Phases

Let the page slightly before adding in another layer - I did a total of 3 layers. 

Watercolour Tutorial: Moon Phases

Now we're going to "lift" the pigment from the moons. To do this, using a lightly wet brush, start wetting the surface of the moon shapes - then grab a piece of tissue paper and blot to lift the pigment, leaving behind white paper.
 Watercolour Tutorial: Moon Phases

Do this with all 3 shapes until they're relatively clear of the blue. 
 Watercolour Tutorial: Moon Phases

For a clean look, I went over the edges of the moons with some white ink. (I used Dr. Ph. Martin's Bleedproof White). You could use thinned out white acrylic paint instead! Using the same ink (or white acrylic) and a paintbrush, splatter on "stars" 
 Watercolour Tutorial: Moon Phases

And finally, I added in some gold for the sparkle! Simply add in a few streaks on top of the moons using gold watercolor paint!
 Watercolour Tutorial: Moon Phases

And you're done! If you recreate this or were inspired to create your own take, I'd love to see so tag me @whimsical.doodles and @archerandolive! :) 


@whimsicaldoodles Moon Phases Illustration in Archer and Olive Watercolor Journal

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1 comment

13 Apr 2020 ShahanaBarshi

This was so cool to watch! Nabaa Afridi, you made it look so easy. Looking forward to more such tutorials from you. :)

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