New! Tutorials: Building Skills!
Start anytime and work at your own pace - keep access indefinitely and benefit from annual updates to the tutorials
Do you want to learn about specific topics and techniques or supplement your learning by developing your skills. Botanical Art Online has a new range of affordable tutorials that may be just what you are looking for. These non-assessed tutorials are delivered via dedicated web pages with video tutorials with detailed written instruction as downloadable PDF documents. Once purchased you keep access indefinitely and can take the tutorial at any time and revisit it whenever you like, also benefitting from annual updates in materials.
NEW for 2020
I've been overwhelmed by the popularity of Watercolour Techniques and Colour mixing, so much so that I've decide to launch a whole new range of Tutorials. In addition to the first tutorials, I'm pleased to announce that Drawing Perspective and Creating Form and Keeping a Sketchbook are now available.
Please Note: if you purchase a tutorial using a Paypal email address which is different from the email you want the tutorial password delivering to, please send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org providing the correct details. Emails are sent out manually so there may be a slight delay in the tutorial password being sent out side office hours (UK time), most are sent within the hour.
Tutorial 1: Watercolour and Dry Brush Techniques
Available now: Cost £55
Do you struggle with patchy washes, ragged or hard edges, heavy flat paint or 'cauliflowering' effects?
Are you unsure about what dry brush techniques actually are and when and where to use them?
Perhaps you find it difficult to create any form and your painting is flat, lacking depth and saturation and doesn't really pop off the page as you'd like it to?
Maybe you simply want to brush up on your watercolour techniques, learn new ones or to supplement learning?
If any of the above apply to you then this could be just what you are looking for.
This non-assessed comprehensive tutorial provides simple guidance and instruction on the essential watercolour techniques used in botanical art. The same techniques can also be applied to many other natural history subjects too, such as insects and shells. The tutorial has 12 short instructional videos on various watercolour techniques including all of the washes and dry brush techniques as well as troubleshooting problems. In addition the demonstrations include topics such as creating and maintaining highlights, and crisp or soft edges are 2 longer videos showing how to put those techniques into practice by breaking the process down into a simple step-by-step approaches in a painting of small subjects, such as petals, leaves and fruits.
The tutorial can be completed in your own time because there is no assessment
Suitable for all levels from complete beginners.
When you sign up you will receive a password to access the web page on the start date
Tutorial 2: Colour Mixing, Using the Primary Palette
cost £55 Available Now
Do you struggle with matching the colours found in nature and with understanding how primary colour mixing works?
Perhaps you find it hard to understand what mixes to use for shade colours?
Maybe you can't understand why you white and yellow flowers look dirty?
Or maybe you just can't achieve the vibrant colours in your reds, purples and other vibrants?
Do your greens look the same or are the just lacklustre and flat?
if you want to gain a better understanding of colour and how to use it in practice this tutorial can help you. Learn about colour theory and colour mixing as well as my own approach and palette choice, using primary colours.
As well as the basic colour wheel system, with complementary, harmonious and analogous colours etc. I've included practical demonstrations in 12 videos and written this tutorial to include my own favourite colour topics, which specifically relate to botanical painting, including:
Mixing with a primary palette
My green and brown mixing system: using the light value of blue as the predictor colour
Why White isn't really White: soft and high light value colours
Keep it Clean, avoiding the dreaded 'botanical' grey and muddy mixes
Hot and Cold: colour temperature and why it's all relative
Yellow, Orange and Red! How to keep it bright
The dark side of the values: Black Mixes
Neutral Tint: Painting tints and shades
Seeing colour and tricks of the eye: Using underlying colours
This tutorial includes: two downloadable PDF documents with over 10 exercises and 12 accompanying videos, showing how to make colour charts, wheels and paintings of actual subjects using different colours.
Tutorial 3: Graphite: Perspective Drawing and Creating Form
Cost £55 Available Now
Is drawing from life difficult and perspective a mystery to you?
Do you struggle to create believable 3 dimensional drawings using shading?
If so this tutorial provides just what you need as it shows the techniques and process in the videos with written text to support.
Explore materials and equipment that work best for tonal drawing and the differences between them.
Learn to make line drawings of leaves, flowers using perspective, by using a combination of measuring, observation and shapes. From simple line drawing to more complex subjects.
Understand the importance of good lighting on your subjects, learn about tricks of the trade, how to set your subject lighting and about using simple photography methods to help.
Learn about the different shading techniques, where to use them, continuous tone, stipple (in graphite and ink), hatching and cross hatching, with examples.
Create form in your drawings using light and shade with graphite by understanding the approach to layering graphite.
Suitable for all levels. This tutorial has 19 videos and a downloadable 16 page PDF with a range of exercises to carry out.
Tutorial 4: Painting Feathers
Cost £55 Coming soon
Who doesn't want to draw and paint feathers?
Capture the different textures from the shiny irridescent surfaces and those lovely floaty parts
This mini tutorial will teach you about the structure of feathers and will show you how to draw and paint then on paper and vellum with beautiful soft results.
Tutorial 5: Drawing More Complex Forms
Cost £55 Available soon July 2021
In a tangle with roots, confuses by cones and Fibonacci sequences or maybe you just lost your way in a flower centre or multi petalled flower?
This tutorial will help you to break down those complex forms in to achievable subjects. With no complicated math!
Tutorial 6: Achieving the Depth and Detail
Cost £55 Available now
This tutorial is ideal if you have already taken the Watercolour Techniques tutorial or have some watercolour experience and want to push your work to the next level by learning more in-depth techniques.
Learn how to:
Paint rich colours, highlights and shadows
Transparency in petals and other parts
Create texture, such as velvety petals
Add surface patterns and markings
How to add hairs
Paint bloom, such as on certain fruits
Negative space, such as roots and flower centres
This tutorial guides you through the process of painting of actual subjects in longer videos, showing the as much of the process as necessary in a painting. Often the first stages are essential in establishing the depth and detail in the latter stages of a painting and multiple challenges may be present in a subject. In this tutorial I will demonstrate my approach to the topics mentioned above from start to finish so that no steps are missed.
The materials are delivered on a dedicated web page, which can be printed as an 18 page PDF along with 8 full videos of subjects, totalling over 9 hours of video, all are mostly in real time with dialogue explaining the process. More videos will be added at a future date, so you will benefit from these too.
Once purchased you may keep access indefinitely and will benefit from future updates to the page. You will receive an email with the password following your purchase, please check your spam folder. If you wish to have the tutorial sent to another email address, please contact me using the contact form or using email@example.com
Tutorial 7: Keeping a Sketchbook
Cost £55 Available Now
Do you want to keep a sketchbook but find it daunting and don't know where to start?
This course gets you started with:
Identifying and describing subjects
Colour matching and notes
Layout and how to decide what to include
Observational drawing and measuring for accuracy
Using different media and approaches from graphite to watercolour
When and how to use photography
Working with limited plant material
Different approaches, e.g. double page spreads, mixed composition pages
Working away from home
There is a 26 page printable document
Plus, for the first 4 weeks further step-by-step videos will be added each week showing my latest sketchbook work as it progresses, which reveals the process that I use -
taking you from the ideas stage, to drawing, tonal studies and a complete watercolour sketch pages, complete with dissections and annotation.
Available now cost £110
If you find leaves the most challenging part of your botanical work, this new tutorial could be for you. It's a longer tutorial than others with 15 hours of video and more to be added. There are also three supporting pdf documents, totalling 30 pages, which is all accessible on a dedicated web page.
This tutorial replaces the previous leaf course but is not personally assessed, sadly I no longer have time to assess a full course on this subject. So I've made more videos with suggested leaf painting exercises. Much of the video material is new. Here are some of the areas covered.
Learn about and understand the structure and types of leaves
How to measure and draw
Understand the tonal values and effect of light and shade on leaves
Underlying colours: how to see and interpret them in your painting
How to use photography to assist the process
Leaves in perspective
Colour mixing for leaves
Green leaves, from light to dark,
Autumn and coloured leaves
Variegated and patterned leaves
Blemishes and nibbles
Natural accurate veins
Surfaces and textures: glossy, matt, hairy...there are many types of leaves etc.
I've tried to include as much of the process as possible in the videos and will be adding more! Once you register, you keep your access for as long as you like, so you can work at your own pace, revisit when it suit to benefit from updates.
Available cost £75
This tutorial is slightly different than the others as its delivered over a 4 week period, thereafter there will be an optional 90 minute Presentation Q and A Zoom session, which you can participate in or watch a recorded version of later. You still keep the access to the rest of the tutorial indefinitely, as with other tutorials but I'm offering this additional support as vellum is a little more complex than other topics and you are bound to have some questions.
If you love the traditional approach and beautiful translucency of vellum and want to try it but don't know where to start, this is it! This non assessed tutorial will give you a good start as it introduces the basics.
Learn about and understand the different types of vellum
the tools of the trade and suppliers
How to prepare vellum
Learn the watercolour techniques to paint on this beautiful surface
Troubleshooting and repairs
a variety of suitable small subjects are demonstrate in full length videos
I've tried to include as much of the process as possible using many video tutorials and will be adding more! Once you register, you keep your access for as long as you like, so you can work at your own pace, revisit when it suit to benefit from updates.
Available soon cost £65
Do you want to illustrate flowers and learn about their form and function. The Tutorial will introduce you to the incredible life of flowers from their formation, purpose, reproduction to senescence and seed formation. In this tutorial you will learn about and illustrate flowers in various stages of development as well as undertaking and illustrating dissections.
In this tutorial you will
Learn about selected flowers from different plant families
Their various structures
How to dissect , scales and illustrate
About reproductive strategies and stages
How to illustrate these different flower stages and forms
Includes many hours of video tutorials, a presentation on flowers and a downloadable pdf
More to follow