Watercolor Classes Online – Watercolor is a wonderful art medium because it is so accessible. With just a cup of water and some paint, you can create amazing works of art.
Attending a watercolor workshop in person is ideal, but did you know that there are also amazing online classes that you can enjoy from the comfort of your home?
Watercolor Classes Online
That said, I’ve put together this list of the best watercolor classes to help you navigate the options. It draws from several online course platforms and covers a variety of themes and techniques.
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I’ve also included some resources at the end of the article with free online watercolor classes — you’re welcome! This is a little less comprehensive, but a great way to test the waters (so to speak).
Despite its apparent simplicity, watercolor painting involves a lot of technique. When it comes to choosing a course, I recommend choosing based on a theme.
By choosing a theme or subject that interests you, such as architectural drawing, children’s books, or nature, you will definitely learn how to apply specific watercolor skills to your art.
You’ll even learn a few secondary skills so you can start drawing and painting finished pieces right away!
Online Painting Classes
Before we get to the list of the best watercolor classes, it’s worth mentioning that there are different platforms to choose from.
Most of you have heard of the likes of Skillshare and Udemy (and listed below are classes from these platforms), but my favorite platform for creative courses is Domestica.
Well, each class features both a professional performer and a professional production crew to show you the ropes. These product values go far beyond what you’ll find on other platforms.
Plus, the courses are one-time purchases with no subscription required, and are often on sale for less than $10. Check out my picks for the best courses on Domestica or create a free account to learn more.
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Now it’s time to get down to business. Here are my picks for the best watercolor classes online for beginners and up.
This whimsical watercolor class is the first taught by painter and artist Ana Victoria Calderón based in Mexico City. As such, it’s in Spanish with English subtitles — but she also has other courses in English.
While it starts with the basics, the main point of this course is to learn more unique techniques by mixing watercolor painting with other materials like salt, alcohol, nail polish remover, chlorine and more.
It’s all about experimenting and getting comfortable with watercolors to create a very complex texture. The final project is creating a galaxy or nebula design, which can be adapted for patterns, landscapes, and countless other types of illustrations.
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This Skillshare watercolor class doesn’t have the same production value as the Domestica course linked below, but is in English and can be enjoyed for free with a free 1-month trial subscription to Skillshare.
For urban sketchers or architecture fans who want to add a splash of color to their works, this is the best online watercolor class to take. It’s on Domestica once again (so expect the same great production values), but this time the course is in English.
While it is not as in-depth in watercolor techniques as the course above, it does cover a bunch of other useful topics. You will learn how to create light and shadows with watercolor, the basics of perspective drawing as well as how to compose and frame your images for the best dramatic effect.
If you want to lean into more rigorous urban sketching, check out this urban sketching course by Lupine, which still uses watercolors but focuses more on creating a scene with people and other details.
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If you’re someone who loves Japanese brushwork or the artwork of Studio Ghibli films, stop what you’re doing and check out this watercolor course.
Taught by Argentinian painter Flor Kaneshiro, during this class you’ll learn the basics of watercolor with a Japanese flair you won’t find anywhere else.
You will learn ancient sumi-e techniques, which create monochromatic nature paintings with precise brush movements. Then, Floor shows how to adapt them into colorful watercolor paintings that look like they were lifted from a Japanese children’s book.
Animals can be a difficult subject for beginners to draw – even more so when you add the unpredictable nature of watercolors. Luckily, this excellent watercolor class online covers exactly that.
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This course focuses specifically on drawing birds, which is a great way to get used to working with bright watercolor paints. UK-based artist Sarah Stokes walks you through the entire process, making this an ideal watercolor class even for beginners.
Keep in mind that although the final project is four birds on a branch, the techniques can easily be applied to any other wildlife. If you want a more freeform take on painting nature, check out this similar course that uses both watercolor and colored pencil.
There are many watercolor courses focused on floral techniques, but I chose this one because it goes through the complete process of painting and digitizing your work to create gorgeous custom stationery.
Unlike other watercolor online classes, this one has you painting from an actual flower so you can see all aspects of the plant in three dimensions. Plus, you don’t need any art supplies other than a watercolor set, so it’s perfect for beginners.
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If you want to branch out from watercolors, the same teacher has another course called Botanical Watercolor Sketchbook. It combines watercolor techniques with colored pencils for added detail.
Flowers are a beautiful subject, but there is much in the natural world that begs to be painted. This excellent course by artist and illustrator Rosalie Hazlett will teach you how to draw and paint mushrooms, leaves and all kinds of plant life you can find near your home.
The course is on SkillShare, a subscription-based platform. This means thousands of courses are unlocked with a single annual subscription. However, a one-month free trial is also available at the link below, which is more than enough time to finish this class and many others!
This class is on the short side, which is great for those looking to get straight to the chase. Also, the teacher has two more short watercolor classes with even more techniques for natural textures and landscapes.
Short Term How To Paint Flowers :: Ljrart
As far as the best watercolor classes on Skillshare go, this one is by far the most complete. Focusing on landscapes, it covers a wide variety of watercolor skills — but always with practical application in mind.
Once you’ve finished learning specific techniques for the sky, trees, and mountains, you’ll put them together to create a finished landscape painting. Or more accurately, four finished landscape paintings.
Teacher Zani Nabil has many more online watercolor classes on Skillshare, each with a specific focus such as pine trees, seascapes, galaxies, and more.
If you’re looking for a true masterclass in watercolor, look no further than this in-depth beginner’s course on Udemy. Taught by award-winning artist Broderick Wong, you’ll learn everything you need to know and then learn over 130 video lessons.
Watercolor 101 — Art By Lucinda
What’s great about this course (besides the nearly 7 hours of content) is how engaging it is. You don’t have to worry about boring theory explanations and you can do hands-on exercises. It is also impeccably made with perfect lighting and camera work.
Since it’s on Udemy, it’s available for one-time purchase, with no ongoing subscription required. It can be expensive (when not on sale), but it’s worth it.
If you enjoy this watercolor class, the same teacher has two more courses on painting watercolor landscapes and more advanced techniques.
For those of you who already have a well-defined art style, some of these watercolor classes may not suit what you want to do. Thankfully, this Udemy course focuses on mechanical techniques and skills with watercolor, so you can apply it however you like.
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The course is divided into three main sections: brush handling, mixing paints and applying paint to paper. Each section has several exercises to practice, although there is no really big final project.
This online watercolor course is great for beginners and intermediate painters who want to really understand how watercolor paints work. While this is the most complete, Jill has many more deep-dive courses to check out on Udemy.
The last entry on our list of the best watercolor classes goes a little further than just watercolor and gouache painting. It is also my only choice from CreativeLive, another great course platform for creatives.
Taught by illustrator and professor Mary Jane Begin, it moves away from techniques and goes deep into material options. You’ll learn about all the different types of watercolor paints, paper, and brushes, and how to choose the one that’s right for you.
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Essentially, it makes watercolor paint confusing for beginners. It’s just one course in a series called Exploring Art Supplies, and it provides a lot of first-hand knowledge about material that can be hard to find in an online watercolor course.
Although none of these are as comprehensive as the best watercolor classes above, these free videos can be one
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