Try Your Hand at...

Snow Scene with Matthew Palmer


Paint your very own snow scene using this handy step-by-step guide.

Created by popular artist Matthew Palmer, using his range of natural watercolours and brushes, this stunning winter landscape is sure to delight and inspire your friends.

Materials

Watercolours

  • Matthew Palmer Natural Blue
  • Matthew Palmer Natural Grey
  • Matthew Palmer Natural Yellow

Brushes

  • Size 10 Round Brush
  • Size 4 Round Brush
  • Matthew Palmer Medium Tree Brush

Other

  • Palette
  • Water pot
  • Kitchen roll
  • Masking Tape
  • Tracedown paper
  • Table salt

Let's get started...

1Use masking tape to attach the paper to a board.

Use the Tracedown paper to transfer the outline image onto your paper. You can print or download the image by clicking here.

Use the tape to mask off the horizon along the tree line on the tracing to create a distant hill.

Top Tip - remove some of the stickiness by sticking the tape to your clothes first. This will prevent any tearing or damage to the paper when you come to remove it.

2Start by wetting the paper, using the size 10 brush. Make sure you wet it all the way down to the tape. The first colour you need to use is a pale (watery) Natural Yellow which goes on at the bottom of the sky area. Now mix in a much stronger Natural Grey and work this down from the top of the paper. The grey should start to mix or blend with the yellow.

3Use the Medium Tree Brush to gently stipple in the distant trees with a strong Natural Grey colour.

4To give the falling snow effect, gently sprinkle some table salt over the sky. But use this very sparingly, as one salt grain is one snow flake.

5Just as the distant trees are about to dry, use the sharp corner of a paint tube to scratch out some tree trunks and branches.

Top Tip - your finger nail is also a very handy tool for scratching out the trunks and branches.

6Gently remove the tape to reveal the snow landscape. Then using the large size 10 brush and a pale Natural Blue, paint the bottom left corner of the snow area. Almost paint a triangular shape and using a clean damp brush blend this upwards towards the trees. Try and make this as smooth as possible.

7Once everything is dry, you can paint the large foreground tree. Use the Medium Tree Brush and mix a strong, thick green using Natural Yellow with Natural Blue. Paint in the ivy first - start at the bottom of the tree and gradually work upwards, stippling as you go along. Notice how the tree gets smaller or thinner as it moves upwards.

8Once this has been painted in, use neat thick Natural Yellow and add some highlights to the ivy. Apply gentle pressure with the Tree Brush.

9Now using the size 4 brush and a strong
Natural Grey, paint in the finer branches.

Top Tip - paint the fine branches in the
direction they grow.

10

As always it’s the finishing touches that make the painting. Using the sharp corner of a paint tube (or a craft knife if you have one), scratch out the settled snow on the tree branches. Add a few extra shadows to the base of the tree using Natural Blue. Use the Medium Tree Brush to paint a few grasses around the tree base.

Well, there you have it, we hope you enjoyed tackling this captivating scene and Merry Christmas from everyone at the SAA.