Moonlit Snowdrops in Watercolor

Let’s paint some white flowers without using masking fluid today. By using a little opaque white you can make bright and contrasty flowers lit by the light of a full moon to celebrate Imbolc and Candlemas.

Materials for Painting the Moonlit Snowdrops in Watercolor

For this painting I used the following materials and equipment:

I can recommend the ZenArt Black Tulip set of brushes for beginners and more advanced painters.

My Method

First of all I created a lively background for the snowdrops, using loose mixtures of all the Primatek colors into a sheet of Bockingford paper. I drew a circle to keep the moon white, and just wetted the paper around that circle and allowed the paint to flow everywhere except within that circle. I then sprinkled salt on the paper and left it to do its magic overnight.

The background emerged quite a lot more subtle than I’d feared it would, and produced an ideal support for a cluster of snowdrops.

So using a photo of real snowdrops as a reference I drew in some outlines of the flowers and leaves, paying attention to the essence of the flower and the arrangement on the paper was refined by using some tracing paper to try out options.

Then I used quite thick gouache to paint in the white petals, and mixed a little gouache with my olive green and black to create the leaves. Watch the video to see how I did it in detail!

Last year’s Snowdrops

Here’s a link to a video I did last year on painting snowdrops which you might also like to watch. This one was done by painting a loose background in watercolor behind the sketched flowers. Quite a different technique and if you want to follow along you can click below to visit the video.


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