Tutorial: How to paint carrots in watercolour

Tasty, healthy and vibrant orange – carrots are a striking vegetable to learn to paint. I especially love to add unsual colours like yellows, reds and purples.

Did you know that carrots were naturally purple? The Dutch bred orange varieties in their national colours in honour of their monarchy. Incredible, right? Let’s get going with this watercolour tutorial.

tutorial how to paint carrots in watercolour

Supplies you will need

Colours to try

  • Cadmium Orange
  • Cadmium Yellow
  • Dioxazine Purple
  • Sap Green

All the watercolour paints I use are from Winsor and Newton’s Professional range, but you don’t need these exact colours.

Painting watercolour carrots – step by step

  1. Mix up a weak orange colour with lots of water. Outline a long, tapered triangle with a rounded top and fill in with a watercolour wash.
  2. While still wet, load up with a darker orange and run your brush along the right-hand side of your carrot, creating a shadow and allowing the paint to blend out.
  3. Repeat the process with a second carrot, ideally in another colour like yellow. Let them touch together for bleeds between them.
  4. Add a third carrot, I’ve gone for a purple shade. Pull the tip in the other direction to create visual interest and difference between your carrots.
  5. Using a very light green, pull up some straight lines from the top of your carrots to add the greens. Then touch your brush down in places, leaving marks to suggest the leaves.
  6. Load up with a darker green colour and touch the brush down again between the previous lighter strokes, letting it blend out. This creates some variation in colour and value but still with a loose style.
  7. Finally, when your carrots are dry, you can add the line details on top. Using a slightly darker shade the the tip of your brush, add rounded lines that emphasise the cylinder shape. Use light strokes and break them up to avoid them looking like tiger stripes.

Now you can paint tasty carrots in watercolour. Why not paint a full page like the image at the top, where they alternate colours and directions?

More fruit and vegetable tutorials

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