There are as many ways of rendering a tree as there are trees in a forest. In today’s video I decided to go for a really loose wash to indicate the bronzing foliage of September, and then drew the trunk and branches with a Staedtler Noris Aquarell black pencil. This gives a very realistic impression of bark and makes a nice contrast with the watercolor paint. After adding most of the branches I came back in with more splatters of paint and some black ink to give texture and depth to the painting.
The materials I used for How to Paint an Autumn Tree are below:
How to Paint an Autumn Tree Materials
As well as the colors of paint I have suggested above, you will need a large brush to apply the paint. I used two Isabey squirrel brushes, one very large and one very small. These brushes are made from natural hair and so they retain a lot of water, which makes them ideal for large washes.
I painted on to a sheet of 20 x 30 cm or approximately 9 x 11 inches Clairefontaine Etival paper. This paper is ideal for students and for practice work, as it handles paint well but is relatively inexpensive. You could use Bockingford, Langton, Strathmore or Boahung with similar results.
The other odds and ends you need are a large jar of clean water (I use an old mason jar for my water which is better than a plastic pot as you can see just how dirty it is getting! – Time to change water!) a piece of old towel cut into a convenient size for drying your brush and a white plate or a mixing palette for mixing your colors.
I also recommend the following Daniel Smith painting set for anyone who has not yet purchased a set. It includes Venetian Red and Burnt Sienna, and several other Earth colors which would work with this painting and many others, from Desert to Mountains, Cities to Landscapes of stone, stucco and tile! This is a Hand Poured Watercolor Half Pan Set of 6 colors with bonus plastic travel case and 9 empty pans ( total 16 pcs). These six unusual colors are gorgeous colors on their own, as mixers with one another, and mixed with the other colors on your palette.
Here is the video on How to Paint an Autumn Tree. I hope you enjoy it!