5 Principles of Watercolor Flowers

jenna rainey

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I’m an artist, self-taught designer, and multi-faceted creative entrepreneur who is hell-bent on teaching everyone how to find their inner creative voice.

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5 Principles of Watercolor Flowers

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Do you struggle with painting watercolor flowers?

If you’ve been watching tutorials on YouTube to help you paint flowers and you’re not pleased with the outcome, you’ve come to the right place. I want to tell you about my top 5 principles that will transform your watercolor flowers.

5 principles of watercolor flowers

  1. Shape: Before you even start painting, you want to think about the basic shape of that flower—whether it be a bell-shaped, cone-shaped, star-shaped, fan-shaped, etc.
  2. Anchor Point: If you’re painting a star-shaped flower, your anchor point is where that center stamen is. All the petals should be pointing back to this anchor point!
  3. White Space: This is SO important, especially for loose-style watercolor. You need white space—not too much!—to differentiate petals and and layers so it doesn’t look like a blobby cloud.
  4. Detail: Add detail at the right time and the right place. Think about an anemone and its dark center. If we add that blackish purple center too soon while the petals are super wet, then it will just bloom and blob. You need to wait add just a touch. Another way to add details is to come back after painting the watercolor layers and finish your piece with details in white gouache!
  5. Perspective: Flowers aren’t always facing you directly! You could be looking at them from the top-down or from the side. You want to add different perspectives so your piece has more movement and dimension.
  6. Composition: My best tip is to split your paper into quadrants and paint floral shapes that follow an S-curve.

See these principles in action in the video below and remember them for your next painting session!


Music license acquired from Artlist



00:00 – Intro
00:39 – First Principle of Watercolor Flowers (Shape)
01:53 – Second Principle (Anchor Point)
03:05 – Third Principle (White Space)
04:46 – Fourth Principle (Detail)
07:09 – Fifth Principle (Perspective)
08:30 – BONUS Tip! (Composition)


Links & Freebies

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Get access to my list of favorite art supplies and business tools here.
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My Floral Watercolor E-book 


Related videos

The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Watercolor
Icelandic Poppies
Wet-on-Wet Technique
How to Set Up a Watercolor Palette
10 Tips to Improve Your Watercolor

… and for even more tutorials, subscribe to my YouTube channel!


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