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How to Colour a Flower

There are lots of different techniques for colouring flowers. I have chosen one from Worlds of Wonder to colour and show you.

To start with choose the colours you wish to use. I tend to use three different shades of the same colour. In this case pinks. I have chosen 196 Burnt Carmine, 127 Pink Carmine and 124 Rose Carmine from the 120 Faber Castell polychromos but this method will work for any brand. I have sharpened them ready.

I start with the mid shade and colour the parts of the petals nearest to the centre of the flower. I put a harder layer near the centre and lighten my pressure as I spread the colour out to the centre of the petals.

Then take the lightest shade. Colour over half of the pencil you have already coloured, where you started to fade it out and then towards the end of the petal fading as you go. To fade apply more pressure and layers of colour at the centre of the petal and less pressure and fewer layers as you go towards the edge.

You can leave it here, but I like to take my darker shade and emphasise certain areas that I feel would have a shadow. Such as where petals overlap and near the centre of the flower.

For the flower middles I take three shades to do a similar thing. You could use the same shade as the leaves but I am going to do some browns and yellows. I have picked 182 Brown Ochre, 183 Light Yellow Ochre and 185 Naples Yellow.

I start with the darkest shade and apply it around the edge. I put a darker layer right on the edge by pressing harder and applying more layers and then fade it out a little.

Then I take the middle shade and cover half of the previous colour and then take the colour towards the middle, fading it as I go by pressing more lightly and applying fewer layers.

I then do the same with the lightest shade, taking the colour right to the centre.

Then I find three green shades for the leaves and colour them in exactly the same way as the petals. I have chosen 278 Chrome Oxide Green, 167 Permanent Green Olive and 168 Earth Green Yellowish. As with the petals I start with the middle shade where the leaves are overlapped by the petals and fade the colour towards the centre. Add the lightest colour on top and fade towards the end of the leaves and then use the darkest shade to add shadow. I did this where the petals meet the leaves and where two leaves were touching.

Materials used:

Worlds of Wonder by Johanna Basford
Faber Castell Polychromos Pencils