44 Distinctive Watercolor Painting Ideas

Watercolor painting is gaining the spark and interest of many painters today. Whether you’re an expert painter or a beginner, there’s so much to bask in the beauty of watercolor paint. In fact, with watercolor painting, you can employ many techniques than you could with any other type of medium. You can go for effects that run from dry brush effects, richly colored transparent paint, and even wet washes. We recommend artists to always have custom bottled water near their workplace to keep their brushes clean all times.

As beautiful as watercolor painting is, however, this generally takes years to perfect and to master; it’ll take so much practice for you to do it well. 

Add some colourful strokes on paper using watercolor. Then, don’t forget to go layer upon layer of light strokes. Before you take out your colors and brushes, have a look at this stunning collection of paintings.

Here, you’ll see portraits, animals, flowers, landscapes, and many more ideas. Browse through below to find inspiration on some watercolor painting ideas that you may also want to get started with.

First, Watercolor Portraits

With portraits, it’s as if you’re taking a photo of the face of your muse or your model. But, instead of using a camera, you’re going more detailed through watercolor. There’s a magical quality in the images that watercolor portraits produce. This is expressed effectively through the harmony of the colors used and the details of the face of your model.

Here you’ll see portraits, animals, flowers, landscapes and many more ideas.

Image Credits: Woman portrait Watercolor painting from Anna Ismagilova/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Beauty, girl, watercolor – Illustration from Hopeful.ya/Shutterstock
Image Credits: abstract woman face. watercolor illustration from Anna Ismagilova/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Style woman with sunglasses from Anna Ismagilova/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Abstract fashion watercolor illustration from Anna Ismagilova/Shutterstock

Watercolor Paintings Of Animals

Image Credits: Fawn watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: horse head watercolour from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Girl feeding a horse watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: White horse runs watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Elephant watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Watercolor Red Fox Hand Drawn Portrait from Maria Stezhko/Shutterstock
Image Credits: bald eagle watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Little tiger watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Sea turtle floats watercolor drawing from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Cat & Dog watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Ginger kitten playing the guitar watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Tiger watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Two killer whales in the ocean from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Polar bear watercolor painting from Lorri Kajenna/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Funny pig. Cute watercolor illustration from Gribanessa/Shutterstock
Image Credits: watercolor drawing of a tropical parrot from socrates471/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Hornbill bird watercolor painting illustration on paper from socrates471/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Set of beautiful watercolor butterflies from Anastasia Lembrik/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Beautiful watercolor butterflies from Anastasia Lembrik/Shutterstock

Watercolor Painting Of Plants

Image Credits: watercolor painting from Akarin Chatariyawich/Shutterstock
Image Credits: watercolor painting persimmon hand drawn from Jinxi/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Watercolor painting. Flower aster from Elinka Malinka/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Magnolia watercolor painting illustration from DeepGreen/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Sunflowers with watercolor painting from Keep Going/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Retro blue bike with flowers in basket from Guy’ s Art/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Spring Blossoms Flowers hand painted watercolor from Maria Stezhko/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Watercolor Roses Flowers In The Vase from Maria Stezhko/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Abstract floral watercolor painting from pluie_r/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Hand painted White, Yellow and Red flowers in soft color from pluie_r/Shutterstock

Abstract Or Landscape Watercolor Paintings

Creating watercolor paintings of various landscapes is a common favorite among painters. This is especially true for those that are still mastering or getting the hang of watercolor painting since it’s exciting to go out and create stills of beautiful landscapes. It’s like freezing memories in the moment of time through delicate strokes of the brush.

When you’re painting landscapes directly out of life, be ready for a sense of spontaneity. A butterfly might suddenly appear or a bird might perch. These give more life to a beautiful artwork. 

Below are some examples of the most beautiful landscape watercolor paintings for you to gain inspiration from.

Image Credits: Watercolor painting of fantasy colorful houses from Elena Schweitzer/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Watercolor painting of colorful fairy houses from Elena Schweitzer/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Hand drawn watercolor vibrant feather set from krisArt/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Ships in the sea, watercolor painting from Regina Jershova/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Painting watercolor landscape pink red flower of Wild himalayan from Painterstock/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Painting watercolor seascape colorful from Painterstock/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Landscape watercolor painting of snow covered mountains with a lake from DeepGreen/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Watercolor landscape from helgafo/Shutterstock
Image Credits: girl in white dress with palm leaf from Archv/Shutterstock
Image Credits: Red rose on the piano. Watercolor flower from unicorn_purple/Shutterstock

With the landscape paintings above, you might want to create your own inspiration for your very first watercolor painting. As an additional tip, you can also opt to go for a sun and moon painting. The stark contrast between the life that the sun and moon bring can best be displayed through the tiny brushes that are used in delicate painting with watercolor.

Final Word / Conclusion

Painting with watercolor comes from a state of mind of the artist. You must be willing to pay keen attention to details. With watercolor, you’re creating brushes and layers of light strokes that put to life an otherwise still work of art. 

When in the process of creating an image, don’t be afraid to make mistakes. These are all part of creating that beautiful watercolor painting that’s uniquely yours. 

Give yourself time to practice. Soon enough, you’ll also get the hang of creating watercolor paintings.