Ultra Loose Watercolor Landscape Video Demo

Experience an exclusive demonstration by Watercolor Fanatic, featuring a vibrant urban scene captured in a loose watercolor style, revealing the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Inspired by a photo reference, this painting undergoes transformations, allowing artistic freedom while eliminating constraints.

Let’s get started painting a loose watercolor urban landscape

Let’s embark on an artistic journey into the heart of the cityscape! Join me as we delve into the vibrant world of loose watercolor painting, capturing the essence and energy of an urban landscape. Through spontaneous brushstrokes and a fluid approach, we’ll bring to life the bustling streets, towering structures, and the lively rhythm of urban life. Get ready to explore this creative adventure as we paint a loose and expressive watercolor cityscape together!

Suggested Material Checklist

Materials can make or break the outcome of a watercolor study. Watch the video that covers the best watercolor materials if you need more specifics about color choices, brush sizes and such. Basically, it’s exactly what I use and recommend for all levels.

Watercolor Paints: Opt for artist-grade watercolor paints in a range of colors. Choose a basic palette that includes six primary colors (one cool and warm hue for each one including red, blue, and yellow) along with earth tones for a versatile collection.

If you aren’t aware of the six primary palette, then check out our in-depth article on how to mix watercolors for beginners. It has the exact hues I use for every painting. And, if I make changes, I always update the article so you know the exact hues that get the best results.

Brushes: Invest in a set of good-quality watercolor brushes with different shapes and sizes. Round brushes are excellent for detailed work, while flat brushes are great for larger washes. I’d recommend one medium and one large pointed round. Then get a large mop brush that will handle those initial washed that are applied in the very beginning.

You only need three brushes to do most of the heavy lifting! However, I do recommend having a dagger and possibly and Motler on hand as well. Check out the article I wrote on how to choose the best watercolor brushes if you have questions on the exact brands, sizes and such.

Paper: I highly recommend selecting watercolor paper specifically designed for this medium. Look for papers labeled “cold-pressed” or “hot-pressed” to suit your preferred texture. Experiment with different weights and brands to find the one that suits your style. Most beginners choose 140 lb. cold press to start their journey. Hot press tends to be a little slick and most used for highly detailed work and portraits.

Avoid cheap, wood pulp papers as they don’t react properly to washes and other techniques. These cheaper papers tend to break down quickly and don’t age well either, basically yellowing over time. Be sure to read the how to choose the best watercolor paper article when you have time.

If you aren’t aware of the six primary palette, then check out our in-depth article on how to mix watercolors for beginners. It has the exact hues I use for every painting. And, if I make changes, I always update the article so you know the exact hues that get the best results.

Palette: A palette is essential for mixing and diluting your watercolors. Choose a palette with wells to hold different colors and a large mixing area. Small palettes tend to get dirty too quick and I found it difficult to have enough free space to mix enough colors without having to stop everything to clean up. The Masterson Pro palette works great and available at Amazon and Blick Art.

Water Containers: Have at least two containers for water—one for rinsing your brushes and another for clean water. Make sure the containers aren’t too small, and I would recommend plastic over glass. I’ve had plenty of studio accidents and cleaning up shattered glass isn’t ideal when in a creative mode.

Masking Tape and Drawing Board: Masking tape helps secure your paper to a drawing board, keeping it flat and preventing it from warping. The tape is optional and depends if you prefer the clean edges. In the beginning you will most likely focus on sketches and studies, so maybe pass until you determine later on if you need it.

A smooth, firm board is a must! I recommend Gator foam board as it’s very sturdy, smooth and durable. Fairly inexpensive and light weight to boot. That covers materials, let’s move on to skills you need to start watercolor painting.

You can see all suggested watercolor materials I use and hight recommend for all levels.

Ultra Loose Watercolor Landscape Video Demonstration

Discover my top five tips for creating loose watercolor urban masterpieces:

  1. Use Large Brushes: Opt for larger-sized brushes to encourage broad strokes and fluid movements. These brushes enable you to cover larger areas swiftly, promoting a more spontaneous and loose painting style.
  2. Embrace Wet-on-Wet Technique: Experiment with wet-on-wet painting technique. Apply wet paint onto a damp surface to encourage colors to blend naturally. This technique allows for beautiful, organic transitions between colors and a softer look to your landscapes.
  3. Work Quickly: Stay agile and work swiftly. Try to complete your painting in one sitting, allowing the colors to blend and merge on the paper. Avoid overworking details, as this may tighten the painting’s appearance.
  4. Focus on Values and Suggestive Detail: Simplify your landscape by focusing on values (lights and darks) rather than intricate details. Suggest forms and structures with minimal brushstrokes, allowing viewers’ imagination to fill in the gaps.
  5. Practice and Experiment: Embrace experimentation and practice regularly. Loose watercolor painting requires practice and a willingness to explore different techniques. Experiment with various brushstrokes, color combinations, and textures to find what works best for your style.


These tips aim to encourage spontaneity and freedom in your watercolor landscape paintings. Experiment with these techniques and adjust them to suit your artistic preferences and vision.