US $19.97

How to Paint Watercolor Portraits

——   Created by Darren Yeo

Share this course:

7h 39m
Lesson time
Skill level

More about this course

I'm Darren from Watercolour Mentor and welcome to 'How to Paint Watercolor Portraits'! 

Portrait painting is challenging! Especially challenging for beginners. By the end of this class, you will be able to easily turn any photograph into a realistic portrait with my portrait painting process and be able to show off your vibrant portraits to your friends and family!

I'm going to simplify the portrait painting process for you by showing you:

  • How to sketch and paint 6 different portraits, based on 6 reference photos.
  • How to use the grid technique to transfer a photo of a portrait onto watercolor paper.
  • How to quickly draw faces from a reference photograph freehand.
  • How to paint subjects in various poses and lighting conditions.
  • How to draw a portrait in pencil using two simple methods.
  • How to layer paints to add color and details.
  • My two step process in painting a watercolor portrait - keeping colors fresh and vibrant.
  • How to use essential watercolour techniques in the context of portraiture, such as wet-in-wet and wet-on-dry.
  • How to determine a light source, and the correct use of values in painting.
  • What essential paints, paper, brushes and drawing materials you will need.

This is a feature packed class, and I have included many demonstrations to provide you more opportunities to learn how to paint different subjects.

So if you're ready to boost your portraiture skills, join me in this class and let's have some fun!

Demonstration Paintings covered in this class: 

The course project

Part 1:

Pick two or more of the portraits shown in this class, and try to paint each portrait demonstrated by following along with the demonstration. Try to spend as much time as possible on the drawing until you are happy with how it looks. If you're feeling adventurous, how about changing some of the facial features or trying some different color combinations?

Part 2:

Find a reference photograph of a person whom you'd like to paint - consider trying to paint a family member or a loved one as you will be more familiar with their facial details and feel a personal connection towards the subject. Using the techniques and processes shown in this class, transfer the reference photo over to your sketchbook or watercolor paper, and paint with watercolor. Upload your project to this class! I will provide feedback and answer any questions posted in the discussions and projects.

Note: my scanned paintings, pencil sketches and original reference photos are attached below. 

17 Lessons

2 mins
12 mins
Materials Required
20 mins
Drawing: Gridding Lesson
29 mins
Drawing: Freehand Drawing
38 mins
Paint a Ballerina: Part One
30 mins
Paint a Ballerina: Part Two
50 mins
Paint a Ballerina: Part Three
19 mins
Female Portrait 1: Light Areas
34 mins
Female Portrait 1: Dark Areas
28 mins
Female Portrait 1: Background
42 mins
Female Portrait 2: Light Hair
36 mins
Female Portrait 3: Brown Hair
29 mins
Female Portrait 4: Shadows
28 mins
Female Portrait 4: Shadows
30 mins
Female Portrait 5: Light Areas
View more lessons +

About the instructor

Darren Yeo
Darren Yeo
  • 31 courses

Hi, I'm Darren from Watercolour Mentor, and I'm here to Mentor, Encourage and Inspire you in your watercolour journey! I like to provide as …

Read more
This course is included in Arbington Premium
$15/month gets you access to every course. Start your 14 day trial today. ☝️

Class benefits

  • Certificate of Completion
  • 30 day satisfaction guarantee
  • 24/7 streaming access
  • Project included
  • Direct teacher access
  • 7h 39m of on-demand video
  • Have a coupon?
  • Checkout