• Shayda Campbell

How to Paint a Floral Letter


This beautiful floral letter artwork is beginner-friendly, and easy to personalize! This one can look a little intimidating but we will work through it step by step to create an easy process. I have my watercolor paper ready, my favorite paints and brushes, and I am ready to get started.


Follow along with the video:

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The final thing you need for this project is a print out of the letter you want to use. Print it out in a font you like, I used one of the classic serifs, and the size you want. On the back of the paper use a pencil to cover the outline of the letter in graphite to transfer it to the watercolor paper. By flipping it over onto our watercolor paper, and tracing the outline with a sharp pencil, you will have a graphite transfer of your letter!



If it is super faint, feel free to go over it on the watercolor paper. Either way, you now have a clear outline that is easily erased so it won't interfere with your watercolor painting. Now we need to plan out our flowers. I've started with three circles to place the flowers, one large and two medium, and a few lines that follow the shape of the S where I will do some tiny flowers or leaves. You can also plot these out on some scrap paper and add more details such as the type of flowers so you have something for reference. When I start painting I am actually going to erase my pencil guide.


I want to keep my color palette really subtle and started by mixing up some beige and gray. I have a few greens prepared and am ready to start with the larger flowers. Once you paint over the pencil you won't be able to erase so I got rid of those lines. Starting with the creamy beige and my largest flower, it is made of just five simple petals and then some darker brown for dotting in the center.


To the right, I started with the center of the daisy, dotting some yellow ochre for the stamen. I used gray for the petals but left a lot of white showing through, the gray should indicate just the shadows and texture to create a white flower.


The rose is basically a broken spiral. If you want to recreate any of these specific florals I have videos that break each of them down into simple steps. Adding darker cream in the middle and bordering it with leaves finishes it off very loosely. The blue flowers are simple splotches of color, they will get their definition as we add leaves and from the shading. Using a little green while the blue is still wet I join them all with delicate little stems.



I am also filling out the area on either side by adding leaves of different sizes. Depending on your letter and the space, you can add more florals, curve those lines, or add different leaves. If things look washed out, add some darker color for contrast and dimension. I will add some periwinkle to the blue, darker green on the leaves and darken up my beiges and grays to add shading to the large florals.


When I am using a lot of one color, I like to use my tube paints as well, it allows you to mix a lot more really easily. For the S I am using payne's gray, so I have that and some fresh water ready to go. It can be a very steely gray so I've mixed in just a hint of magenta to warm it up, as well as water. Of course, you can use any color!



Now, it is time to paint in the letter, and our outline is already there. The pointed round brush is perfect for the large area, the fine tip can create a sharp edge and the belly of the brush will hold lots of the paint and fill in the wider area. I went in very light and then darkened it after, keeping it light by the flowers. To take the pressure off yourself, you can add some darker paint to the wet and let it seep in naturally instead of painting with the darkest shades.


You can see I only darkened it slightly, keeping the gray pretty light overall. Turn and rotate the page as you need to make is easiest to fill in your whole letter. And then it is complete!


I don't know if there is any better gift than personalized artwork and this one is so fun and easy to create. Get creative with the color palette and florals, and make as many letters as you want!



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