Easy Sunset Over Water Watercolor Painting

Easy Watercolor Sunset Over The Ocean For Kids And Beginners

Artists say that watercolor painting is almost a performance art. 

A lot of happy accidents occur together to create a watercolor painting. A watercolor sunset over water painting reflects that creatively.

A sunset in water painting is a brilliant idea for both kids and beginners. The reason is you can never go wrong with it if given simple tutorial tips. Therefore, we have teamed up with Art Teacher: @LissArtClass to  bring you a guide on easy sunset watercolor painting. Let’s start!

Simple Watercolor Sunset Painting Guide

The process of sunset over ocean watercolor painting is easy. However, it can be helpful to be aware of a few simple painting techniques any beginner can use.. Let’s start this tutorial by learning the painting techniques to make easy watercolor paintings of sunsets. 

Techniques for Easy Sunset Watercolor Painting

The Wet-on-Wet Technique

The wet-on-wet technique provides a soft yet complex effect in your paintings. You apply watercolor on a painting paper after moistening it with clean water. It creates beautiful watercolor washes. All you have to do is paint water on the surface first and then your chosen color. 

The same technique helps blend two or more watercolors and create an amalgamation effect. Paint the paper with a wet watercolor. Before it dries, paint another color over it.

The Wet-on-Dry Technique

The wet-on-dry technique results in a managed design and features of a painting. It results in crisp and defined edges. It involves painting on dry paper with wet watercolors. You have better control of your brush strokes, and the color does not spread.

You can also use it on dry paint to create thicker textures or more saturated colors. Once the first layer of paint dries on the watercolor paper, you can paint with wet colors. You’ll end up with rough and highlighted effects.

The Lifting Technique

The lifting watercolor technique is only possible if you are painting on a paper surface. It does not work on a canvas surface. This technique removes or erases the watercolor from the surface. 

Load your painting brush with water. Paint the water in the desired areas. Take a paper towel and blot the area with it. You will end up with either a lighter shade of paint on the surface or a completely white surface. 

The Chinese Brush Painting

Chinese brush painting technique is famous for contemporary paintings or nature-themed paintings. It is a distinctive art where you need to use easy and effortless brush strokes on the surface. 

Supplies Needed to Paint Watercolor Sunset Ocean

You need to accumulate different materials to start painting watercolor sunset over the water. Following is the list of all the art supplies you would need – 

  • A high-quality set of watercolors
  • A sheet of watercolor paper
  • Flat and round paint brushes in small, medium, and big sizes
  • A pencil
  • Painting palette
  • A tissue or a paper towel
  • Masking tape

Steps to Easy Sunset Watercolor Painting

The Preparation

Take out the watercolors you are going to need for an easy sunset watercolor painting. You will need the following colors- 

  • Yellow
  • Orange
  • Pink 
  • Purple
  • Light Blue
  • Dark Blue
  • White/ Cream

Take your watercolor paper and place it on a clean and plain surface. A room with good lighting will help you see the correct color shades.

Step 1: Creating Borders For Your Watercolor Painting

Tape the borders of the paper with masking tape. We mask them off to get the sharp edges of the painting. Our painting also looks more presentable at the end.

Painting A Simple Sunset

Step 2: Sketch Outline Your Watercolor Sunset 

Begin your artwork by drawing a rough outline of the elements similar to the painting above with a free hand. Using a pencil, draw a horizontal line to depict the sea. Above the line, draw a semi-circle for the sun. On both sides of the semi-circle, make lines to portray mountains. 

Step 3: Start With The Yellow Watercolor Of Your Sunset

Use the large flat paint brush for this part. Using the wet-on-wet technique, moist the upper half of the paper with water where you are supposed to paint the sky. 

Take the yellow color and paint the area where you drew the sun. Leaving the space for mountains, paint yellow in a horizontal line above and around the sun.

Step 4: Painting The Sunset Sky With Watercolors

Starting from the bottom near the yellow outline, paint horizontal sections of color ranging from orange to blue upwards toward the top of the paper.

Make broad horizontal lines with effortless strokes as done for a Chinese Brush painting. Start with the orange watercolor over the yellow, move on to pink, purple, and then light blue. Paint the remaining upper area with a darker blue shade.

The Beginners Way To Paint An Ocean With Watercolor

Since the ocean is the mirror image of the sky, we will use shades of blue color. You can use the wet-on-wet technique here as well. We will start painting the ocean below the horizontal skyline you drew earlier. 

Step 5: A SImple Blue Ocean Watercolor Painting Technique

With the same large flat brush, take the dark blue color and paint either side of the ocean in short horizontal strokes. 

Next, use the light blue color in the same pattern.

Step 6: Painting The Sun’s Reflection In The Sea With Watercolor

After painting the sides, we will paint the sun’s reflection in the middle of the ocean. 

Paint the orange color and let it blend with the blue. At the center below the sun, paint a yellow color.

Then, Let the colors dry for a while.

Enhancing The Elements Of Your Watercolor Sunset

Step 7: Adding Highlights With White Watercolor Paint

Paint the inner area of the sun with a white or cream color. It will make the sun look shining bright. Change your brush to a medium-sized, round paint brush.

With the dry-on-dry technique, paint clouds in the sky with the same color. Paint it on both sides of the sheet.

Step 8: Easy  Watercolor Mountains Painting

It is time to fill the space you left in between the sky and the ocean. We chose to  paint mountains in dark blue color to keep the “mood” consistent, but you can choose any watercolor you would like. 

Use the small, pointed paintbrush and paint slanted-shaped hill on either side of the sun. 

Step 9: Purple Watercolor To Make A Majestic Sky 

By now, the clouds must have dried up. Use a light purple color on top of the clouds to make shadows. Change your brush back to the medium-sized round brush. 

Step 10: Painting The Sun’s Reflection Part II

To depict the sun’s reflection on the ocean, paint white in the middle of the water on the yellow color. Then, take the yellow and orange color and make little lines over them.

Step 11: A Simple Techniques For Adding Definition To Your Watercolor Ocean Painting

Load your brush with orange and yellow watercolor paint, and add thin lines over the orange and yellow colors from your sun’s sea reflection.

Next do the same, but this time with light and dark blue watercolors over the ocean’s blue water.

While that dries….

Add more white to the sun and clouds to increase the light’s exposure and enhance the reflection.

To give a more warm look to your painting, use orange and pink colors to make a shadow on the white part. 

Then let everything dry again.

The Finishing Touches

It is time to touch up all the colors to increase the intensity of your simple sunset watercolor painting. 

Begin at the top by painting over the same colors. Cover the whole sky except for the clouds. Do the same for the dark and light blue color of the ocean.

Keep the painting out in the open for a few hours to let it dry completely. 

Once it dries, you can outline the elements with a black marker. You can do this step for a part of the clouds, hills, and the blue, orange, and yellow lines of the water current on the water.

Remove the masking tapes from the corners. That is it! Your easy sunset watercolor painting is complete.

Check out our companion Youtube video on ‘how to paint a sunset over water with watercolor’ as a reference while painting. This video tutorial will help you visualize each of the steps more completely.

Show off your sunset ocean painting by showing it to your friends and family. You can also get it framed and hang it in your living room. 

Also, do not be disheartened if you do not get perfect results on the first try. Painting with watercolors is an art. Keep practicing, and you will get better. 

If you are short on painting supplies, let RiseBrite help you. We have quality watercolors and acrylic paint sets in our store. Visit our website right now to shop and let your creativity bloom!