Landscape Foundations: Watercolor Rocks and Ripples


Landscape Foundations (level 4) classes teach the elements needed for landscape watercolor painting, but one at a time. This course covers the painting of rocks and ripples – small streams, puddles, and interactions of water! These classes build skills to grouped together for more advanced paintings at Level 5. Some experience with watercolor is needed to study successive lessons taught the way Sandy would have liked to learn!


From the instructor: Students have asked me to translate my in-person watercolor workshops into online courses. The in-person workshops are usually $300-500, and include days of demos by me of foundational techniques in watercolor, then you. Not everyone can afford these, nor get to them — especially since the pandemic has caused many art stores to put events on hold indefinitely.

Now you can take one of my workshops the comfort of your own studio…and for a lot less money!

What is a Foundations Course?

Foundations courses methodically walk through many techniques to get artists started on larger artworks (not card-sized); no one was around to help ME make that transition, so I’m going to teach YOU all the things I wish someone taught me, and in an order that makes sense. Each one will build on the last, growing skills and knowledge throughout a watercolorist’s journey through the series.

What experience is required for a Level 4 class?

Some basic facility with watercolor is important for Foundations courses. Whether small paintings as sketches or cards, or attempts at larger works, having some comfort level with applying pigment to paper is all that’s needed! These classes are designed to help artists make the jump from small to large format, or to give the experienced larger-format painter new ideas for approaching painting techniques.

These courses are not for complete novices; I would recommend beginning with Watercolor Jumpstart if you’ve never done any watercolor at all, as that class deals with basic pigment mixing and management. And prior to taking this, you may want to start with Watercolor Trees I, as that serves as a basis for this course too.

Do I need to know how to draw?

For this Landscape series, only limited drawing skills are needed. That’s deliberate – I wanted to make watercolor accessible to those with limited drawing experience! So no buildings will be included in these aside from very minor elements so that perspective experience isn’t required. Trees, hills, rocks, and skies are easy and forgiving subject matter, and photo resources are carefully selected to help keep the focus on subjects that are doable.

(Note: In the next few years, an Architectural Foundations series will begin in which Drawing 101 will be a prerequisite so that perspective needn’t be taught again in a painting class.)

  • Intermediate/advanced Level
  • 6+ hours of video! Teaching video is sped up for efficiency, and full realtime video is also provided.
  • Supplies are found in the free preview lesson
  • Language: English

See the video preview of class below:

The lessons can be viewed anytime and at your leisure; there are hours of instruction that you can watch again and again for years to come:

  1. FREE Pre-class Lesson with supply list (8 min video)
  2. Negative Painting River Rocks (16 min + realtime 55 min)
  3. Gentle Swells (19 min + realtime 49 min)
  4. Capillary Waves (15 min + realtime 55 min)
  5. Disruptive Raindrops (18 min + realtime 60 min)
  6. Submerged Rocks (16 min + realtime 53 min)

Click the preclass lesson below to see the supplies and exercises – and set a reminder for yourself to return to your account on Black Friday for the lessons! (You don’t have to be here on that day, but that’s just the first day the lessons will be there.)

View free pre-class lesson.


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