How to Paint a Sunset City Skyline with Watercolors | Art Journal Thursday Ep. 38

How to Paint a Sunset City Skyline with Watercolors | Art Journal Thursday Ep. 38


– [Mako] One of the things
I was always obsessed about is Sailor Moon, and that’s
why we’re going to paint a beautiful sunset and skyline scenery, inspired by Sailor Moon, with watercolors, in 10 simple steps, let’s go. (upbeat hip hop music) By the way, make sure to click on the bell to turn your notifications
on and to comment below. #makoficationsquad in the first 24 hours when I upload a new video for a chance to get a shoutout and to win lots of cool
arts and crafts supplies in my ongoing giveaway. The winner will be announced
at the end of every month in one of my videos that I post
every Thursday and Saturday. And now, let’s jump into the tutorial. This is a optional, but
I really like to apply some washi tape all around the paper to achieve a white frame once
the painting is finished. Now, the first step is creating the first layer of the painting. Here, I’m going to use a light shade of red and yellow watercolor paint that I will add, one by one, to the paper. Now, to apply the paint,
I use a flat brush and then distribute the paint evenly, starting with a light shade of red. From here, we want to mix
a little bit of yellow to the first wash of paint
to add a little bit of warmth by creating a really
subtle shade of orange. But, do this very quickly, as we don’t want the red
paint to start drying, or otherwise, the paint will
create unwanted, blotchy areas once everything is dry. While the paint is still wet,
take something round and flat, and wrap it into some tissue paper. And next, press it down where
you want to add the sun. This way, we absorb all the
paint into the tissue paper while creating a clean, round shape for the sun on top of our sky. Since I used something round
that had a hole in the center, I had to go back and
remove some of the paint using some tissue paper. Now, let everything completely dry and we can move on to the next step. Step number three is adding
more details to the sky to make it look more realistic. Here, we don’t want to
be super precise, though. All we want is to add a few clouds by using a slightly darker shade. Here, I just created a general
shape of a cloud on the left and on the right side, without
adding any further details. Using the same shade of color, I also went ahead and outlined the sun, starting from the edge of the
sun, and then blended it out towards the sides of the
painting to soften the edges. We really just want to create
this effect of glowing. As soon as the sky is dry, we can go back, using the same yellow shade
that we used in the beginning to fill in the circle. You can also blend it
out towards the sides to add a little bit of warmth to the glowing part of the sky. And now comes the part where most of us feel really
overwhelmed and scared, and that’s painting the skyline. It’s not only scary because there are so
many buildings to paint, but also so many details, such as windows and lights
you have to think about, but don’t worry, we will break it down into really easy steps,
so you can sketch out any skyline you want in the future. Now, let’s start with the
furthest part of the skyline. To create the buildings,
I mix my red color paint with a little bit of
purple to make it darker, and then I went ahead and started adding squares of different
heights to the horizon using a smaller, flat brush. I use my Sailor Moon reference just to get an idea where
to place the buildings, but we don’t have to actually follow it. You can make some buildings
smaller and wider, some taller and more narrow, just to add more variety to the painting. Now, let the paint dry, and we can move on to the
second row of buildings. The closer the buildings,
the darker they seem to us, so, the second row of buildings is going to be the same,
just slightly darker. Here, I repeat the same steps, but use a slightly darker shade, and place the buildings
a little bit lower. This dark shade is also great for adding details to the
first row of buildings. You can simply use the flat brush to add outlines to the buildings and also small horizontal lines to make them look like
small windows far, far away. Here again, we don’t have to be precise, we just want to have a hint of windows. Again, let everything completely dry, and we can move on to the
third row of buildings. Here, we can be more
precise, but not really. This means, since we are
now closer to the viewer, you shouldn’t forget
about his perspective. Since the viewer is
looking rather straight into one single point,
somewhere in the center, the outer edges of the buildings angle towards this one
point in the center, so we want to recreate this perspective by adding walls to the buildings that look towards the center. As this is just a rough sketch, you don’t absolutely
have to be super precise, but if you want to learn more
about it to improve your art, you can look into different perspectives, and how to achieve them. Here, again, I created the
overall shapes of the buildings using a slightly darker shade of color, and then let everything dry. Hang in there, we are done with the scariest part of this painting. The next step is adding more details, by adding more detailed
objects to the painting, and by outlining the
buildings we just created. For this step, I’m going
to use a thin brush and then outline the buildings
using a darker shade of color that is a mixture of red
and purple colored paint. Don’t forget that we don’t try
to paint it super accurately, and hyper realistically. I intentionally chose
this picture to recreate, because if you look closely, it is so simple, but it conveys so much to the mood you can almost
feel by looking at the picture. So, you don’t always
have to be super precise when you paint something. You can just break it
down into simple shapes and just use a few different
colors to create a base, and from there, you can
slowly build up the painting by adding more and more details. This will make it easier for
you to see what is missing, and what you can add to your painting to make it look amazing. This is how it looks so far. Now, let everything completely dry, and we can build up the painting
even more, and we are done. Now, one of the first things I did is darken the area around the sun the same way as in the beginning, just by using a slightly
darker shade of color. This will intensify the
appearance of the sunset and the clouds around it, and since the skyline is
from an area in Tokyo, you can also add the TV tower. Here, I’m using a thin brush
to create the triangle shape by adding one line at a time. You simply press down the
brush, one step at a time, until you’ve created the
overall shape of the tower. And, from here, you can add the details. If you want to make the
tower look super precise, you can sketch out a few guidelines first, so you know where to paint, or just wing it and hope
for the best as I do here. Don’t worry guys, we are almost done. Step number seven is
adding a few highlights to the painting. As we have a sun in the
background, even if it sets, it still reflects on the windows
and walls of the buildings. So, for this step, I’m going
to use my beloved white ink pen that I will link in the description box for you guys so you can check it out. You just want to go over your painting, and add a few lines here and there, not really thinking about it too much. We simply do the same thing as we did when we outlined the buildings
with the darker shade. With this pen, you can also add lines on top of the buildings to create a hint of
windows in the background. I think this really adds so much life to the painting, even though we don’t add one window
at a time super precisely, we just add a hint of realism. I also use this pen to add
details to the tower and the sun. Step number eight, is finally
removing the washi tape to really see what needs to
be fixed, changed, or added. Now, I use the white pen to add reflections to some
areas that had glass elements, and then use a darker shade
of paint and a thin brush, again, to add even more outlines and shadows to the buildings. Sometimes, we don’t see
certain things immediately, so it’s totally okay to switch things up. You don’t absolutely
have to follow something, step by step, all the time. Experiment and see what
works and what doesn’t, and learn from it. If something doesn’t
turn out the way I hoped, I don’t see it as a failure. I’m actually happy that this way, I can discover what doesn’t work and find even better
solutions for certain things. So, instead of being afraid to add brush strokes to the
painting and ruining something, just relax and add a few
lines here and there. It doesn’t always have to make sense. Sometimes, adding a hint of something without making it super
precise is actually something that can make an art
piece super interesting, because this looseness
and the free expression can add so much character, a certain mood, and maybe even a story
to a simple art piece. So, don’t stress too much,
just let go and have fun. And, the final step is something I spontaneously discovered for myself, and it’s adding a glow to the city by using a white pastel or white chalk. We simply want to add a
little bit of the powder to the middle row of the buildings, and a little bit to the sun, and then carefully blend it out. This way, we kinda recreate the glowing of the different windows and lights inside the city. And, this is a final result. I really hope you enjoyed this
video and found it helpful. If you did, be sure to give this video a thumbs up to support this channel. Make sure you are subscribed
and have your notifications on by clicking on the bell to get notified whenever I put a new video on
Thursdays and on Saturdays. Thank you so much for watching,
guys, have a wonderful day, and I will see you soon, bye.

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