Imaginary Creatures (watercolor) preclass

Welcome to the preclass lesson!

Let’s talk about the supplies needed for this course – you may already have plenty at home you can use! I always encourage trying out what you’ve got whenever possible. In the video below, you can see how you can take a full sheet (22″ x 30″) and turn it into 18 bookmarks and 2 cards! (The math is below the video.)


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.


As with all my classes, use supplies you love, being prepared for different results. (Which is not a bad thing!)

Daniel Smith Watercolors:

    1. Nickel Azo (or any cool yellow like Hansa Yellow Light, Lemon Yellow, etc)
    2. New Gamboge (or any warm yellow like Hansa Yellow Deep, Hansa Yellow Deep, etc)
    3. Aussie Red Gold (or mix New Gamboge with Quin Rose)
    4. Quinacridone Rose (or cool red like Quin Pink, etc)
    5. Anthraquinoid Scarlet (or warm red like Cadmium Red, Organic Vermillion, etc.)
    6. Imperial Purple (or Carbazole violet or other purple)
    7. Sap Green (or any green; we’ll also be mixing greens)
    8. Iridescent Electric Blue (or a blue like Cobalt)
    9. Indanthrone Blue (or an indigo, or mix French Ultramarine or Cobalt with Paynes)
    10. Cobalt Teal Blue (or a thin wash of any teal/bluegreen)
    11. Phthalo Blue Green shade (or any phthalo blue; they’ll all add something special to our mixes)
    12. Titanium White Gouache 



The first brush in each of these is the one that’s used in the demo; but the second is a much less expensive one.

  1. Winsor Newton flat 3/4 sable one stroke brush OR Silver Brush Black Velvet 3/4″ square
  2. Da Vinci Maestro Kolinsky Sable Round 8 OR Silver Brush Black Velvet Round 8
  3. Da Vinci Maestro Kolinsky Sable Round 4 OR Silver Brush Black Velvet Round 4
  4. Utrecht Synthetic Sablette Round – Size 1 or Silver Brush Black Velvet Round 2


  1. If using a brush: Plaid Color By Me cheap brush set, mixed
  2. Pebeo drawing gum• Blick or Amazon
  3. Grumbacher Miskit masking fluid Blick or Amazon
  4. Daniel Smith Masking Fluid w applicator tip Blick or Amazon
  5. Grafix Rubber Cement Pickup 


You’ll need one sheet from a 9×12 pad, or cut down a sheet; the images we’ll paint are 2″ x 2″, but you can also resize them as desired. Demos will be on rough paper but cold press will work great too.

  1. Arches Cold Press sheet or pad

  2. Arches Rough sheet or pad

  3. Ampersand Hardboard to tape down my paper

Prepping supplies

You need not create a grid for this project, though it will be taught that way; you can also create a grid with any size tapes between the boxes, but 1/4″ is recommended.To create the grid as shown in the lesson, you’ll need the following:

  1. Artist tape, 3/4″
  2. Artist tape, 1/4″
  3. Ruler or T-square 
  4. Pencil
  5. Kneaded eraser
  6. Light box (optional; you can also tape art to a window on a sunny day to trace)


About masking


Quick links to share your work wherever you like:

Artventure Community

Artventure is an active art community of thousands of artists that I run on Mighty Networks via an app or the web. You’ll be right in my pocket for quick feedback and answers to questions and bonus zoom calls! Free to join.

Social media & blogs

Post wherever you like to share, and tag @sandyallnock – I love to see your work!  Posting lets your friends know which class you’re taking. They might enjoy learning as well!