More Watercolour Birds

Last week  I showed you a couple of birds I’d painted when I stumbled across a series of free loose bird painting tutorials, made by Tom Sheppard. Continuing with this series I’ve now painted a Kingfisher…


…and a goldfinch…

Hate that green bit

I then decided to branch out on my own and paint the original a loose blue tit, I meant to learn to paint from this series, without even looking at Tom’s blue tit tutorial.

Almost immediately I started I was kicking myself for wetting the breast first and not using broken brush strokes on dry paper like Tom had taught me. I moved on and painted the rest wet on dry. Then I looked back at the whole bird – yes, I know I should have taken a picture to show you – and realised that when I painted the breast I’d defaulted to the process and style I really love; wet on wet.

Yes, Tom’s birds are beautiful. Broken brush strokes are beautiful. But I’m not Tom and I what I love is the wet in wet process and the look of watercolour when it does it’s ‘watercoloury thing’.

I then rather botched the bird to try and make it look more like my sort of painting. It’s certainly far from a masterpiece, but here it is; neither the way I’d learned from the bird series  or the way my heart would have chosen to paint it!


Hopefully next time I show you a blue tit painting it will be painted from my heart. Having said that, I certainly learnt some things from Tom – thank you Tom –  and no doubt you’ll be seeing the odd broken brush stroke in my work, but from here on in, (mostly) more soft, more watercoloury pictures.

Until next time,

Bekki x








Loose Watercolour Birds

When I finished painting the blue tit I showed you in my last post, I decided I wanted to try and paint it in a loser style.


I looked for a tutorial on YouTube to help me and came across one by Tom Sheppard. It was part of a series on loose birds, so I decided to start with the first episode; painting a raven. In my first attempt I got it all too wet…20200620_20342600

The second was better, but not great…


…. and the third not much better…


I then moved into the second tutorial for an avocet. I painted a rubbish bird, then made a a right hash attempting to add a background. I then  made it worse trying to improve the background…


The third tutorial was for a magpie. I’m not fond of magpies and I was fed up with painting near black birds, so I skipped to episode four; a flamingo. This was a bit of a step change on the colours front, so I practiced on an unstretched piece of paper…


… and then used stretched paper…

I think I prefer the practice piece.

Then I tried to add a background and made it worse…


A long way to go, but that’s my progress to far and all those birds definitely helped improve my understanding of control of wet on wet watercolour and learn a few things about backgrounds.

And if you’re wondering, the blue tit is episode eight, so I may be a while before I get to that.

Until next time,

Bekki x