Composing a well balanced Watercolor Posy

Updated: Feb 22

When we start a painting the worst fear is just taking out that paper and have that white page just staring back at you. How are you going to approach it?

It's always a good idea to start out with a sketch on a different paper. Cheap copy paper will do. And then you just sketch the ideas you have in your head. In this case I want to paint a Posy.

The sketch will help me position the flowers next to eachother and I will be able to catch the flaws before they happen on the good paper.

I have a few tips for you when you paint bouquets. Let's have a look at them.

Different sizes of flowers

When you choose your flowers you want to make sure you have 3 sizes of flowers.

Statement flowers

These flowers are the focal point of your posy. You want to keep these to a few so they dont overpower eachother. A focal flower could for an example be Roses, Hydrangeas or Peonies.

Medium Flowers

Have flowers in the medium range to fill up the space and give the posy character. This could be Daisies, Tulips and a ton of other flowers.

Detail flowers

In between the big and medium sized flowers you want to add details. This will give your bouquet some texture and give it that extra pop of interest. Choose small flowers or flowers with a lot of texture like Queen Annes Lace, forget me not's or maybe even Berries when we get closer to fall.

Placement of the Flowers

When you sketch your flowers you want to consider a few things.

Start with the big flowers

Start big

Start out with the biggest flowers, then add the medium sized and fill up the empty space with detail flowers for texture.

Odd numbers is your friend

When it comes to compositions odd numbers is your friend. I always choose to have 1, 3 or 5 of a flower in my bouquet. For some reason 2 or 4 flowers just ruins everything. So let's not go there.

Different angles

Make sure to show of your flowers from different angles. It's the combiniation of a subtle sideview and a full on frontal portrait that creates a beautiful combination. Also try to include a bud and a withering flower. That way you honour the flowers life and at the same time gives your posy interest out of the normal perfect posy.

Feel the Rythm in the lines

Think of the rythm in your piece

Put on some sweet tunes while doing this excercise. The music will get to your pencil and help you sketch with music in mind. All beautiful art have a rythm that you can almost see in the brush strokes and in the lines. See if you can create that. And it is totally up to you if it is Mozart og Beoncé - it's all a styles choice.

Now that you have your sketch all ready you can go on sketching on your nice watercolor paper with no fear. You can totally sketch on there as well with your pencil, just make sure you dont press too hard. You want to able to get rid of the lines afterwards..

If you want to see this whole process from sketch to final posy you can check out my newest Class right. You can find it in 2 ways:

Camilla Damsbo Art School


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