This tutorial will teach you how to make a simple greeting card that you can personalize to suit any occasion. In addition, you’re going to learn how to use masking fluid effectively to create some lovely effects with watercolor.
The best way to think about using masking fluid, is to think of your painting in terms of layers. Read our review on Pebeo Drawing Gum – the masking fluid that’ll we will be using – for instructions on how to use it as well as some tips for beginners.
The specific brands I used in the tutorial are listed in the brackets
- Watercolor paper (Bee Paper Company Watercolor Paper 140lb)
- Watercolor paints
- Masking Fluid (Pebeo Drawing Gum)
- Pen (Kuretake Disposable Pocket Brush Pen – fine)
- Optional: eraser
- Wet your old, cheap brush, and dot some masking fluid on to your paper. It can be random or you can make a pattern. Add some small hearts in there as well. Be careful not to use too much masking fluid, or it will not dry properly.
- Allow the masking fluid to dry. You can speed up the process with a hairdryer while holding down the paper (or tape it down). I put mine near my heat vent to dry quickly.
- Once it has dried, wet the surface of paper with some water. Choose 3 colors that you think would go well together. I chose coral, yellow, and sap green to bring a bright, summer theme to my painting. Apply the lighter colors first (coral or yellow first, then sap green). Don’t think too much about where to paint, and just try to keep a nice balance of the 3 colors. Let it dry.
- Apply more masking fluid in the shape of some bubbles. Don’t completely fill some of the circles. Let it dry.
- Layer on another wash of paint using the same colors (Or if you choose a darker color, the areas that are masked will pop even more!). Let it dry.
- For the last layer, paint some curved leaf stems using olive green (or any darker green you have available). Paint some flowers using a darker pink (I mixed the coral color with a deeper pink). Use some of the same yellow color you used earlier to dot the centers of the flowers. Leave the middle somewhat empty, so you can write your message there.
- Remove the masking fluid by rubbing your fingers or an eraser on the paper. I used a kneaded eraser that will not product eraser clumps and can pick up to drawing gum easily. It takes a while to remove all of it.
- Using a pen, or with some watercolor paint, write your message in the center. Be sure to use a saturated color that will stand out from the background. I used Kuretake’s Disposable Pocket Brush Pen (review here) to write “Happy Birthday” on my card.
Enjoy the cool, negative space, effect obtained by using masking fluid!
Comment down below if you like using masking fluid or if you followed this tutorial and have any questions. We would love to see what you’ve created!