Arctic Bear Watercolor Preclass

Welcome to the preclass lesson!

Let’s talk supplies! Getting the right colors will be more important for this painting than for others on this website; the sky colors make a big difference in their depth, and the texture in the bear is delicious. Note which colors are optional in the list below.

Before we start…a little housekeeping

I retain the copyright to the content you are learning in class. That means…

  1. Do not sell or give away the concepts from my classes – you may not re-teach my instruction contained or created within these lessons.
  2. Do not post a video tutorial or step by step photo tutorial of your own redraw of class content.
  3. Do not repost any handouts you receive in class.

However…I love to see students making strides and taking this teaching and personalizing it with your own skills.

  1. DO make your own designs and develop your own style! I love that!
  2. DO gift your creations made with these techniques, of course!

At the bottom of each lesson you’ll see some ways to share your homework and ask questions, so that’ll be handy for you.


Use what you’ve got for sure! If you’re picking up some extra colors for class, consider just getting a tile at the hardware store or a plate at Goodwill rather than worrying about a palette and pans to fit in the colors. You can decide later if the colors are ones you’ll use ongoing. But since folks ask – my palette is by House of Hoffman  and the one I recommend for most people though is a Whiskey Painters palette. It has wells that dip down at an angle that helps move the paint into a mixable puddle, which can assist in mixing enough pigment for large washes.


I used Arches Rough sheets  and recommend getting yourself a sheet if you haven’t before. This painting was created to be a 1/4 sheet piece – that means you’ll fold a sheet in half and tear it, then in half again.


My favorite brushes of late have been natural hair brushes: a Winsor Newton Kolinsky Sable Series 7 Round #8  and a Da Vinci Maestro Kolinsky Sable Round 4  and a 0 by them as well.With a Da Vinci Mottler Flat Wash  brushes for good measure.

However you can use brushes you have(Round 8, 4, and 0, with the mottler or a mop),  but watch the way color lays down in the videos. If it takes you a dozen brushstrokes to do what one does in the video, ask Santa to bring you one for Christmas!


  1. Indanthrone Blue
  2. Indigo
  3. Lunar Blue
  4. Jane’s Black (Blue Orange) 
  5. Green Gold
  6. Sap Green
  7. Anthraquinoid Scarlet
  8. Quinacridone Rose
  9. Transparent Red Oxide
  10. Cobalt Blue
  11. Phthalo Blue Turquoise
  12. White Gouache 


You’ll need something to tape your paper to; I like the Incredible Art Board by Grafix. Lightweight but sturdy!

White artist tape is a must at your level of painting; being able to see the color you’re using without being surrounded by a blue or green “frame” will really help. I use a 3/4″ width.


Quick links to share your work wherever you like:

Artventure Community

An active art community run by Sandy – and you’ll be right in her pocket for quick feedback and answers to questions! Free to join.

Student Facebook Group

Our closed group is a safe place to share for those in all our classes who love the ‘book! Activity isn’t as high there, since most moved to Artventure.

Social media & blogs

Post wherever you like to share, and let your friends know which class you’re taking. They might like it too!