Watercolor Tutorial: How To Paint Skin Tones • By M3lart

Watercolor Tutorial: How To Paint Skin Tones • By M3lart


In this video, I’ll show you how I paint
dark, medium and fair skin tones with watercolors It was interesting trying to
explain what I’m doing because most of the time when I paint I’m still
experimenting but I think I came up with a pretty good way to visually explain my
thought process. I’ve broken each skin color down into just four basic colors.
First is the base color which is the lightest of the four. Then a darker
version of the base color. You could almost think of these as being the same
color or two ends of the same color the gradient which is why I’m blending them
here there it is the blush color which doesn’t necessarily mean blush like makeup.
You’ll see what I mean a little later in the video. And the fourth color is the
shadow. Shadows aren’t technically part of the skin but I’ll explain that more a
little bit later. So here’s a quick overview of the colors I’ll be using.
Go ahead and pause if you want to read it These are the faces I’ll be painting I’ve just outlined them in ink so that
you can see what I’m doing more easily first we’ll do our base layer which I
realized I put in the wrong tray compared to my chart but it’s fine
because we’ll be using a bit more of this color anyway and we’re just gonna
kind of drag the pigment around the face letting it pool in areas you want it to
be darker and then adding more water in areas where you want it to be lighter
even intentionally leaving some areas white to create kind of a highlight. You
can always fill them in later if they’re too stark especially with the darker
skin tones I find that the highlight is often nice if it’s a nice golden color
versus the white which can look a little bit hollow. For this first layer I’m using
a combination of like a yellow ochre and a kind of hot pink with a little bit of
brown. I’m using a Windsor Newton palette their Cottman palette and the color
names are ridiculous I don’t even know most of them yet so they’ll be in the
description if you if you want to know that part it might look like I’ve moved on to the
second color but this is still the first color just another layer of it on paint
looks still slightly wet so I’ll kind of blend it in with the wet paint to create
gradient effects I’m also adding a small amount of the blush color to further blend in with this gradient skin that we’re creating and just while it’s
drying it’s important that you keep an eye on it and blend out any areas that
create too harsh of a line unless that’s what you’re going for. For the medium skin tone we start with a similar golden color
it’s that same combination of yellow ochre with hot pink and a tiny bit of
brown you’ll see that the areas that I tend to leave a little bit of white
space or at least lighter are the tip of the nose, the tops of the cheekbones, and
the center of the lower lip, sometimes a little on the forehead as well. I like to
give myself a larger area of highlight than I think I’ll need because you can
always blend it out later it’s easier to add more paint than it is to try and
take away paint and for this light skin color I used mainly pink with a lot of
water and a tiny bit of the yellow color as well which I ended up adding more of
here because it was just a little bit too pink so once that first layer is dry you can
go in with your second color I probably should have painted the hair in advance
but oh well just try to ignore whatever I did just there. This second layer is
where we’re really going to define the features of the face, get the shapes down,
the shape of the forehead, make it nice and round, the shapes around the eyes
where the eyes kind of meet the bridge of the nose, how far the nose comes out…
all that good stuff can be defined with this color. For the dark skin I’m using
the colors from the base layer plus some extra brown and some purple as well to
cool it down a little bit. For this layer it’s fun to experiment with different
techniques using “wet on wet” paint versus “wet on dry”. If you use wet on dry paint
you can get more of those crisp edges and that can actually help you define,
that’s what I’m doing right here, that can help you define your shapes a little
bit better and it’ll create a harder line sources those smooth gradients I
personally like to have a combination of the two of the smooth with the hard
lines I think it creates a cool effect I’m not really going for realism so much
as just like letting the paint flow and pool and kind of create unexpected
little shapes and I don’t know normally I’d be adding more colors at
this point but I wanted to keep it simple for this video and not make it
too crazy. I am adding a little bit more blush to this layer even though this
technically isn’t the blush layer I like to get started on the blending process
pretty early on for the medium skin tone I also did a
combination of the same first colors with the addition of more brown and I
also added a little bit of a muted green color which I think makes it a nice
olive complexion. For this one is just equal parts of the pink and yellow with
a little less water than I did before so like I mentioned at the beginning
this isn’t necessarily blush like makeup although you could apply it that way if
you wanted to it’s actually more the areas of skin that will see more sun or
are pulled tight over areas with a lot of blood vessels like the nose and the
cheekbones or at least that’s what I’ve heard I could be totally wrong about
that. For the dark skin I’m using a burgundy that I made with red, brown and
purple. For the medium skin tone I thought a peach color would look nice so
I mixed red and pink with a little bit of orange and I like to apply the blush
not just on the cheeks but also the nose, the lips, around the forehead, on ears, and
on the tops of the shoulders So the shadow color isn’t actually part of the
skin but it is a very important layer when painting skin because it shows
where the light is falling across the skin which is really important for
creating depth on an otherwise two-dimensional surface. For all three of
these portraits I’ve done a really simple light source which is just
basically in front and slightly above each of their faces. So from that we can
determine that the [shadow] would fall below the brow bone, around the eyes, below the nose, below the lips, and below the chin. If
she was facing the light straight on then there would barely be any shadow.
The higher up that the light source is, the further down the shadow will go. For this
shadow I’m using a mixture of blue and purple. We don’t need to add any skin
tones to the shadow because we’re already painting on top of those colors
so when this color dries it’ll be a nice blend of both the shadow and skin colors
because of this I think you could use any of these shadow colors with any of
these skin combinations and it would probably turn out looking pretty good
one important thing to remember when painting portraits is that you want to
wait for the skin to dry before you add the eye color, lip color or hair color
because otherwise they can bleed and look kind of scary. And I forgot to do
this step but if you want to add some freckles just use your second color. I
had a lot more information I was gonna try and squeeze into this video but it’s
already pretty long as I think I’m just gonna stop there hopefully all of that
made sense and is actually helpful when I was creating this guide I noticed
that for each example my second color was the same as my first color on the
next darkest skin tone so I guess I did have some kind of formula without really
realizing it so yeah those are all my secrets for
painting skin give it a thumbs up if you learned something and definitely
subscribe if you want to see more videos like this thank you so much for watching
I’ll see you in the next one you

5 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *